Unconventional colours: new shades for the bold and brave
Never ones to shy away from a splash of colour, we’re pleased to see that the trend for brighter, bolder interiors shows no sign of slowing down any time soon. If you’re tired of seeing the same old shades, then you’ll be happy to know that we’ve compiled three of our favourite looks that bring together unexpected combinations of colours with surprisingly harmonious results. Whether you’re a lover of all things retro, a modern minimalist or lean towards more classic style, there’s always a place for colour in the home. And don’t forget, the beauty of a new paint job is that it’s incredibly easy to rectify if you’re not one hundred percent sure about the results. So we say… be brave!
Pair Jewel Tones with Dark Shades to Pull Off Modern Glamour
It might not be a new trend, but we’re still loving all things luxe, and if you ask us, there’s no better way to channel a little modern decadence than with a fresh take on old-world glamour. This means looking to materials and finishes that offer a dash of opulence – such as marble, brass, velvet, marquetry and smoked glass – and shapes inspired by bygone eras, like clean Art Deco curves.
Colour is the key to making these elements work in a contemporary setting: a dark and moody palette is the perfect foil for this lavish look. Here, the deep blue-grey backdrop is a sobering influence, softening the impact of the bright jewel tones of our Berlin sofa and Quin armchair, and proving that you can mix competing colours without overpowering a space. And, contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a large, bright abode to pull of a scheme like this, as dark shades are a great way to make a feature out of a small space or a room that doesn’t get a lot of natural light.
If you’re still debating taking the paint plunge, it’s worth noting that, with winter looming on the horizon, now is the perfect time to luxe up your living space. Everyone knows that as the days get shorter and the weather turns, staying in swiftly becomes the new going out – and we’d much rather be sipping a cocktail on a sumptuous sofa than braving the cold, thank you very much!
Complete the look
From top: Mira Smooth & Storm Grey Pendant, £99
Salina Marble & Antique Brass Bar Trolley, £399
Banner Mango Wood & Brass Cabinet, £599
Mix Cool Greys with Burnt Brights for New Take on 70s Style
It’s fair to say that 1970s-inspired decor isn’t for everyone, and there are a good few looks that are probably best left in the past. If psychedelic patterns, rainbow hues and whacky accessories aren’t your thing, you’ll be pleased to hear that there are other ways to embrace the care-free, bohemian spirit of this decade, without throwing taste out of the window.
Again, colour is your friend. Nothing says 70s style like rich, warm tones, such as burnt orange, ochre or dark caramel. Here, we’ve opted for a particularly vibrant shade of red-orange for the walls – a bold nod to this decade’s over-the-top aesthetic. To temper the exuberant backdrop, we’ve kept the furnishings deliberately low key, choosing the sleek Seattle sofa and our Marcia armchair in complementing cool-grey shades.
Sharp-lined shelving and an industrial-style coffee table add a graphic touch, while the Penfold stool brings a cheeky pop of bright, tone-on-tone colour. We love the combination of loud walls and quiet minimalism, but if you’d prefer to soften things up a bit, try a geometric-print floor rug and some statement lighting… lava lamp optional.
Complete the look
From top: Ilias Natural & Black Rug, £399
Kin Gold & Black Wall Lamp, £199
Hamilton Dark Mango Wood Sideboard, £649
Channel the New Nordic Palette with Muted Hues and Warm Neutrals
There’s been a lot of talk about the ‘new’ Nordic colours of late, but as Antonia AF Petersens explains in her book on the subject*, Scandinavian interiors weren’t always a white out. The monochrome aesthetic grew in popularity in the post-war period, when British and American design became particularly taken with ‘Scandinavian Modern’.
It’s true that the lack of light in the Northern Hemisphere makes white a popular choice for Scandi homes, but a broader look at design history shows that the Nordic countries have always had a knack for colour, too, from Gustavian-era pastels to the warm, natural palettes of the 1990s. This space takes the latter look and steps it up a notch to earthy effect. Brown walls might seem a bold choice, but are actually incredibly classic, and make for a seriously cocooning living space.
With our Sutton sofa anchoring the look firmly in timelessly elegant Scandi territory, we’ve layered in more warmth with accents of amber and sand. If the brown walls feel like too much of a commitment, consider a softer tone, or a plaster-like hue for an easy route to the desert-inspired colour trend that’s been having a moment of late.
Complete the look
From top: Houdini Mango Wood Shelving, £299
Pero Black Mirror, £179;
Aleyna Taupe Rug, £299
Opener image: Terning Rosewood TV Stand, £249