Social media is a great source of inspiration, if kept in perspective.

Social media has some of the best places for finding inspiration – we love it! Instagram and Pinterest are probably two of the most commonly used social media platforms used by ourselves and our clients when sourcing inspiration for homes. Searching for ideas has never been easier and the content keeps getting better and better. Social media freely offers up-to-the-minute trend alerts and access to a wide range of styles. There are useful digital tools to help you collect your ideas and the inspiration you find online. However, very few people get to build with an unlimited budget and using every great idea found on social media may not be possible.

It’s important to maintain perspective when relating these images on social media to your own new home build. As explored on the SBS documentary, “Like, Subscribe, Follow,” many posts on Instagram are designed with the intent of engaging viewers to sell products. Furthermore, some “influencers” are given paid sponsorship or free products from businesses in return for creating content that leads the viewers to purchase the featured products. Essentially, it’s advertising. This means the influencers may be able to include more expensive products in their home build than would be affordable for most people.

It is also important to remember that people tend to post only the best on images social media. The “perfect shot” doesn’t necessarily depict real life. Plenty of time, effort and preparation may have gone into creating that shot. Photoshop, filters, specialised lighting and cropping are just some of the tools that photographers use to make beautiful images. In fact, some images on social media literally are not real, but rather computer-generated image renders that look incredibly realistic. These renders are commonly used by builders, architects and designers to give clients a visual representation of the concepts for their new home. The technology has become so advanced that it can be very difficult to pick a real image from a rendered image.

The design and construction industries face a challenge set by the standards and ideals of social media. People’s expectations of what they want their home to be like – as depicted on social media – doesn’t always stack up to what is actually practical, physically possible or within budget. So while social media has some fantastic ideas, when you do find something you like, it’s a good idea to have a chat with your builder about how achievable the look is and the costs involved. This will help you to make informed decisions and keep in budget. Designing and Building with one company can greatly help with this process. Using your social media photos as inspiration, your design and build team can create a building plan that reflects these ideas in a practical and affordable way.

We know the best approach to designing a build is achieved through balance. We advise and help our clients identify and prioritise the items they need to include in their homes and equally, where they can be prepared to make compromises. When using social media for inspiration, this could be choosing the key ideas from the image and finding better value options for the less significant features within the room. It can be finding a less expensive product which can create a similar effect as the product within the inspiration, or forgoing an unnecessary item in order to include another item that you really want. Having built many homes for ourselves and other clients, we have first-hand knowledge and experience of how to effectively balance a build for great results.

10 Instagram accounts we love:

Zephyr & Stone

Norsu Interiors

Mon Palmer

Homes To Love

Exotic Nurseries

The Palm Co

Cedar and Suede

Stritt Design and Construction

Porter’s Paints