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So… colour. Possibly one of the most important parts to getting it right when it comes to interior design – and also fiendishly subjective. It’s also something that clients can have strong views on or be completely ready to start anew with. We’ve been involved with the painting of 32 rooms this last year.

Here are our thoughts:

It’s about using colour to make people happy at home given that our world is about helping people have better homes (…better of course meaning different things to different people). We spend around 80% of our time in buildings which highlights how important it is to get interior environments right.

Colour is queen, storage is king. With both of these things taken care of there’s a fantastic place to layer everything else both in and on.

The paint products we use in our homes have changed a lot. A lot of colours we use today in the more premium ranges have a little bit of black in. It can seem an odd development but take away harshly bright colours and fits well around the colours we often surround ourselves with these days (in Northern Europe anyway).

Feature walls… we do often get asked about these and tend not to recommend simply coloured feature walls. They can really break a room if the space is not fully considered. We tend to think of feature walls as one wall having actual features, and not just one wall a different colour. More thoughts HERE:

If a client so desires we also love to work with nature outside, so not necessarily exactly the same colours, but making it feel like we’re roughly in the same environs as the spaces outside our windows. Having worked with homeowners in both London and places closer to home (Bristol) like Gloucestershire / Wales and the South West it has been interesting to learn from a fine artist that more people out this way seem to love colour more and are less keen to use grey. That said it’s obviously not 100% cut and dried, perhaps more a reflection of what we see see around us.

It’s not colour alone that will make a house a home… it’s about creating a scheme and layering colour with texture, light, with furniture, and with unusual items favourite items. In our work look at all surfaces in a room alongside each other to make these decisions and then add some fun things.

We’re personally often drawn to blue which we seem to treat almost as a neutral (…not that we would force a specific colour on someone!) There’s such a huge range of shades to work with from grey to teal to cyan to powder blue. It just seems to work in the UK. Most of all it’s about reflecting personalities and the direct link between them and the way people like to live.

Here are a few interesting ideas if you’d like to try something different:

Paint all the window frames in your house in one strong colour. It’s a very Dutch way of decorating and makes the windows feel bigger. This can be a particularly nice way to frame a view
Move away from painting both your skirting and dado rails in white, as this makes the room spin in white lines. Instead, try painting your woodwork a darker colour than the walls, rather than the other way round. By doing this you’ll create the effect of more light and space

Other than the architectural trimmings, use one colour throughout the whole room – paint the walls, window frames, ceiling, woodwork all in the same colour. This gives the room strength, has a calming effect and makes unsightly additions (like your basic style of radiator or build in cupboards) vanish.
paint over a dado rail rather than leaving the top half the same colour as the ceiling, otherwise your ceiling height will completely drop.
And a couple of ideas from Farrow and Ball:
Paint the ceiling a colour sympathetic to the wall colour in the same colour group. This makes the wall colour ‘bleed’ into the ceiling instead of there being a harsh stop-line. Think of the ceiling as being your 5th wall.
Let your kids paint on one wall or provide a surprise by painting inside of a cupboard / drawer