SAYING IT WITH FLOWERS

4   6

Throughout my home there is one thing you can’t fail to notice … my use of florals. Big and bold or small and ditsy, I use gloriously colourful blooms to tie each room together.

Every space in my home is filled with flower paintings, patchwork throws, barkcloth cushions or feature wallpaper that burst with an array of roses, hydrangeas, primulas and pansies. Some date back as far as the Victorian era, but there’s a few sneaky Cath Kidston favourites in there too.

For me, flowers bring a real beauty to a home, adding instant bursts of colour and interest. It doesn’t matter how grey and dank it is outside, inside it’s always summer! I like to mix different shapes, patterns and textures – just think how wonderful a traditional cottage garden looks, filled with a mix of delphiniums, foxgloves, hollyhocks and lupins.

To get the look in your own home, start by grouping similar items together – a selection of Vernon Ward prints or a collection of different sized jugs , for example – that create a real floral focal point. Then layer different textures and patterns using cushions and throws. One of my favourite piece in my home is probably my giant 1930s rug that completely fills my lounge. It was the perfect finishing touch to a room that was already blooming!

To be honest, I don’t worry if all my floral pieces are the same style, time period or colour; I figure that if I love them all, they’ll somehow go with each other. It’s very much a feminine home, without, I hope, being too girly.

 

3   1

BEING BOLD AND USING COLOUR

4  3

As someone who literally lives in “fashion black” the fact that my home is a riot of colour can come as a bit of a surprise. But each room bursts with a vibrant palette of blues, greens, reds and yellows. And yes, it all happens by accident.

As a vintage collector I have, over the last decade, filled my home with treasures unearthed at car boot sales, flea markets and charity shops. Because so many of these finds are different colours, inevitably my rooms became a mass of rainbow brights.

So when I decorate, I don’t have a specific colour theme in mind. I don’t think “I’m going to have a blue bedroom or a green kitchen” and I don’t chose a wall colour because it matches a painting or a sofa. Instead I build a room around my favourite pieces and just throw them all in together. If something doesn’t quite work then I’ll try it in a different room.

I do like to have pops of the same colour around the room. For example, in my bedroom a wonderful 1950s chest of drawers, picture frame and a duvet cover in yellow help draw your eye around the space.

I know so many people are afraid to use bright and bold colours in their home, but painting a feature wall in a fabulous deep blue, or kitchen units in a playful red add instant interest to. And let’s face it, if it’s only a tin of paint it didn’t set you back too much money and you can easily cover with something a little “our there” it if you hate the results!

1 2