We all want to enjoy being at home at the weekend or after work, but how? From pendant lights to cosy furnishings at the dining table, adding personalised, softer touches to your interior design can help to create a room with the ideal character, atmosphere and mood for you.
Choosing the right shade
Did you know that, when we walk into or spend time in a room, the colour of it can have a true effect on our emotions?
Selecting the décor colour is important but there are a few aspects to consider. Firstly, how big or small is the space? If your kitchen is small, you’ll want the space to be bright and airy. So, you might opt for predominately lighter shades for the walls or cabinetry. That way, cooking need not be a dark and isolating experience! A pale palette also makes for a sleek aesthetic that can be personalised with splashes of colour and will have you staying on trend for 2018. Ideal Home has aptly named this the ‘Unicorn-inspired’ trend featuring pale blues and pinks, personalised with glinting bronze and metal. Have an open-plan, handmade kitchen with plenty of space? Then try darker hues. Large, airy, bespoke kitchens can handle a stronger, darker palette without making the space appear restrictive or oppressive. Dark blue cabinets are set to be the most popular colour choice this year for modern kitchens.
Secondly, consider where your home gets the most natural light. The personal palette will vary from client to client and it is important for kitchen designers and interior designers alike to use their expertise to help their clients make informed choices about colour schemes. The option of hand painted cabinetry allows you to experiment with changing trends, but also gives you an authentic texture on the wood that you simply can’t achieve with a spray-paint finish.
Why not use Pinterest to virtually decorate your home? When pulling together ideas, keep a few questions in mind such as How do I want to use this space? What impact will lighting have on these colours? Or What is the psychology of this colour? The kitchen or living room (usually whichever is the biggest room in the home) is the best place to start, as these are likely to be your most centrally located rooms and all other palettes branch off from here. Paint this larger room in a bold colour, and work around the home either complementing the first shade, contrasting it or matching with a soft, neutral hue.
How do different colours make us feel?
- Red: passionate and dangerous — suited to a warm, sociable environment, such as the dining room.
- Pink: love and peace — suited to a restful space in the home, such as the bedroom.
- Yellow: warm and positive — suited to a bright and lively space, such as the kitchen or dining room.
- Orange: stability — suited to a lively space in the home, such as the living or dining room.
- Green: calm and natural — suited to a restful space, such as the bedroom or living room.
- Blue: soothing and peaceful — suited to a cool and calm space, such as the kitchen, bedroom or bathroom.
- White: bright and pure — suited to a light and airy environment, such as kitchen, bedroom or bathroom.
What textures should you use?
Play around with the varieties of textures in your home to create a truly bespoke decor. If you’re looking to achieve a cosy setting, then steer clear of a regimented list of restricted textures and you’ll find textures that marry well irrespective of their feel or material. Mirrors and glass objects are a good accent to any texture. To create a broody feel, consider rich, dark veneers. For a softer touch, incorporate silk upholstery, velvet floor-length curtains and hints of aged brass and copper.
The type of lighting you select can also impact on how your home makes you feel. Different rooms around the home require different styles of lighting due to the nature of tasks and activities that go on in each space. Even in a room, it is vital that you use more than one type of lighting if you are to achieve any sort of ambiance.
Let’s start with the lounge or sitting room. This area is generally dedicated to watching TV and will need ceiling lights, possibly on a dimmer, so that the right light can be achieved throughout the day and when the curtains are drawn. One corner may serve as a dedicated reading spot. If so, then a floor lamp that provides a softer light closer overhead will make a world of difference.
When you’re cooking or socialising in the kitchen, lighting plays a key part in creating the right ambience. Invest in pendant lights, perhaps in varying heights and with a warm temperature to the bulb. Plinth lighting is also a clever way to add warmth as well as a focal point to the design. This has a particularly striking effect on an island, giving the illusion of ‘floating cabinets’.
The right atmosphere is, of course, subjective. Everyone has a different idea of the ideal home decor. Other ways to improve the ambiance in your home include transforming a space with scent and layering different aromas. Changing colours, textures, smells and lighting are all simple, inexpensive ways of changing how a room feels.
*This is a collaborative post*