By Chloe Shakesby


THIS MUM has shared how she spent £8,000 transforming her home into a wildlife lover’s paradise – with every zany room ZEBRA THEMED.

Paediatric nurse Emma McAllister (35) from Washington, UK, has loved zebras since she can remember, and when she was stuck shielding during Covid lockdowns, decided that she wanted to pay homage to the stripy mammals.

Confined to her three-bedroom semi-detached town house, which she bought in 2020 for £207k, Emma began to fill her time with interior design.

“I found I was bored, and to pass the time I began decorating my blank canvas home,” said Emma.

Emma is obsessed with zebra print – as well as her own clothing, she has incorporated the style throughout her home.

“I experimented with bright colours and patterns to make my home a happy place during an awful time.

“I have always loved zebras and found so many different home interiors with this pattern so decided to use it throughout my home.

“I came across a big zebra print in 2020 which I purchased and put in my bedroom.

“I loved it everytime I walked into the room and this made me want to buy more zebra things – which I did.

“Doing my home interiors gave me something to focus on and I loved seeing the transformations paint, wallpaper and panelling can make.”

Emma has spent £8,000 redecorating her home to fit into her zebra theme, and says it took about six months to complete.

“My bedroom is the biggest room and covers the very top floor as the house is a three story home,” she said.

Emma has even incorporated zebras into the bathroom.

“I always love relaxing in a bath and after previously staying in hotels which have baths in bedrooms I decided to add a bath in mine.

“I got a plumber to come and do the plumbing and a joiner to box in all of the pipe work. This was the most expensive thing I added in my home, I also panelled the walls too.

“My living room is quite small but I added a fake chimney breast wall and put a fake fire and the TV here which makes the room feel bigger.”

Emma also has a zebra-print rug in her living room, as well as a zebra vase, and in her bedroom there is zebra bedding.

The house is also painted mostly in black and white, with zebra-like stripes by the stairs and black and white block walls.

And though Emma loves her zebra decor, she says that not everyone is so enthusiastic.

“My home has a mixed response and it’s not to everyone’s taste,” she said.

“The kind of comments I get can sometimes be very negative.

“For example, one person said ‘your house would give me a headache’.

The drawers before Emma’s transformation.
A set of drawers that Emma upcycled to fit the rest of her home.

“I have had some lovely feedback though, such as people saying they would never have thought these colours and patterns would work but I’ve done a great job.”

Emma lives with her three children Noah (11), Zac (8) and Felix (7), as well as their labrador Monty.

“My kids weren’t keen on the zebra print at first but now they actually love it and always point out zebra things if they see them,” said Emma.

“I am constantly changing and redecorating the house too because I really enjoy doing it.”

As for Emma’s future plans – she is hoping to one day meet her muse.

“I haven’t met a zebra but it’s my dream to go on a safari and see them in real life,” she said.

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