a way of life...

Category: Colour (Page 1 of 8)

Navy Blue & White Interior Schemes

This past week I had the pleasure of constructing a navy blue and white mood board for my Instagram Grid and Reels post.

Blue mood board
Blue mood board

I ventured to explain how the use of these two hues can create totally contrasting schemes.

These first two images have a similarity inasmuch as both have added a rich mohogany brown to the otherwise blue and white scheme.

This adds a warmth and richness which is what I eluded to in my description of the mood board.

Cosy

Here a squishy leather sofa and textured scatter cushions against the dark blue walls create a lush, cosy feel. Autumn ready?

Navy walls with white accessories; optional cat!

Contemporary

The white walls and light coloured furniture present a contemporary style that is enhanced by the use of the navy accessories and dark wood highlights. Scandi influence?

Modern Fall Living Room Decor
White walls with navy highlights

Kitchens

These two kitchens have a completely different look and feel despite the matching colour palette.

The one on the left is ultra modern with its high gloss work surface and navy blue scallop shaped tiles. By contrast the one on the right if far more rustic with its all navy blue cabinetry and brick style tiles.

All embracing

This monochromatic scheme is brought to life with the use of different textures and patterns. The continuity of paint colour across the book shelf, wall, window frame, and shutters makes it almost feel cocoon like. The patterned ceiling is an interesting feature.

Monochromatic
Monochromatic

Striking

The hallway below might be considered an odd mixture of styles. The artwork, however, pulls the whole scheme together which otherwise might look quite disjointed.

Striking
Striking

The addition of the red cabinet and zebra rug make a striking combination against the navy blue and white wallpaper and Japanese vases.

Sydney Armchair
Sydney Armchair

Ultimately, navy blue and white can look trés chic and ultra sophisticated. The clever use of patterns and textures is key to achieving a cohesive look.

For more ideas how to use blue in your home read about Pantone’s 2020 colour of the year here; Classic Blue

  • 📸 Pinterest
  • 📸Carolyn Hayter

Orange & Green

Virgin Radio DJ Chris Evans claims that shades of orange and green are abundant in his house and garden even though it seems to have come about organically rather than by a conscious thought process. He also realised that is wardrobe shared a similar colour palette.

When you look at the colours of nature it’s not surprising that this is such a winning combination. Whether it be fruits, flowers, or vegetables, the leaves and the fruit compliment each other perfectly.

Like all colours though there are many, many variations and as such will suit a whole host of interior styles.

The more subtle hues would work well in a rustic environment like this kitchen below. The softness of the green herbs offsets the pale reclaimed bricks and their earthen coloured pointing.

Rustic isn’t for everyone, especially in the 21st century when the has been a revival of mid-20th century trends. The paint chart below picks up on the more popular shades of orange and green.

Lush velvets in teal and a tomato soup orange light up this monochrome interior. They are a complete contrast to the geometric patterns on the flooring and scatter cushions and as such add a touch of drama.

Blocks of teal and a more subtle shade of orange make a statement in this kitchenette. The block of white tiles bring some much needed relief from the otherwise completely dark wall and again a monochrome floor grounds the whole scheme.

When you have a high ceiling you can afford to add a colour that gives the impression of bringing it down a tad. The kitchen featured below is a real eclectic mix of different periods in time. The stainless steel range and overhead extractor hood sit surprisingly well amidst the antique mirror and enamel bread bin.

Whatever your style there will be a colour that makes your heart sing.

However, f you’re not sure whether a paint colour will match existing finishes Little Greene paint and paper produce a colour chart with flying paint chips.

Simply bend the card along the ready-made creases to reveal each hand-painted colour chip without the white background. Genius!

As Chris Evans proved fashion invariably overlaps with interior styles. See my blog a Dash of Orange for an inspired example of this in action.

📸Pinterest 📸Carolyn Hayter

A Different Perspective

I imagine the COVID-19 pandemic has touched all of our lives in one way or another and forced as to look at everything with a different perspective.

Instead of going for a run last night I went for a leisurely stroll. No longer rushing due to time constraints I was able to amble through my local village and enjoy the peace and quiet that the reduced amount of road traffic has created.

I smiled as a saw a number of skips on people’s drives as only last week our dustcart drove past as it was full to overflowing. It did return a while later explaining that as so many people were clearing out their garages there was a lot more refuse than normal.

I also raised a grin when I saw a lady jet washing her paving and a gentleman painting his fence. Oh my, what lovely clean and tidy homes we will have by the time the lockdown comes to an end.

There was another chap hacking at a hedge. I’m not sure if this was out of sheer frustration as there didn’t appear to be any rhythm to his attack on the innocent leafy bystander.

With our beauty salons closed for business, manicuring has a whole new meaning, as I witnessed endless lawns mown and strimmed to within an inch of their lives.

I have to admit that Staying Home has provided endless opportunities for me to titivate our house and garden. There is barely a weed to be seen in the allotment and my tatty garden furniture has been given a whole new lease of life with a coat of Neptune Old Rose eggshell.

Similarly, paint that I bought for the garage at the end of last summer has suddenly emerged from the depths of the cupboard. The wooden exterior is now a lovely rich barn black whilst the window frames are F&B’s Light Blue gloss. Even the garden gates and picket fence that I had condemned look brand new after a lick of black paint.

I have taken delight in the fact that I no longer plan according to the day of the week but more according to the weather forecast. So here I am today back in my “she shed” catching up with paperwork as the raindrops lightly water the newly planted beans and sit proud on the freshly painted chairs.

Stay Home – Stay Safe

HACK

Now that our local recycling centre is closed I have not been able to dispose of my grass cuttings. I learnt recently that these can be used as a mulch around trees, shrubs, roses and even amongst some vegetables. Apply in thin layers and top-up weekly to suppress weeds.

The Savill Garden

A visit to the Savill Garden visitor centre earlier this week ticked all my boxes.

A lovely stroll in the tranquil wooded gardens, followed by a nice cup of tea, and finally a wander round the gift shop. What’s not to like?

This architectural gem was designed by Glen Howells Architects, Buro Happold and Engineers Haskins Robinsons Waters.

It was opened in 2006 by the Duke of Edinburgh.

Not unlike the shop at Wisley Gardens in Surrey it is stocked with colourful homewares and children’s toys and books.

Soft furnishings by Weaver Green

Seasonal silk blooms mingle with an assortment of environmentally friendly soft furnishings.

Pastel pinks and cool greys provided a clear direction for my post-festive house styling.

The Savill Garden gift shop is open from 9.30am to 6pm during Summer, and 9.30am to 4.30pm in Winter – every day apart from Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Blue’s The Hue

Monday has received some very bad press this past week. It is perceived as one of the most depressing days of the year due to the post-Christmas blues. We are given to believe that credit card debt, festive weight gain, and the long wait to the next pay day adds up to “Blue Monday”.

Personally I would rather not dwell on the negative aspects of the new year but embrace what it has to throw at us.

Pantone has announced this year’s colour as Classic Blue and, as such, my mailbox has been full of positive spins on this timeless tone.

Classic Blue evokes a sense of stylish serenity...

The Announcement

Pantone’s 2020 colour of the year is Classic Blue.

Pantone announced that its 2020 Color of the Year is Classic Blue, a shade reminiscent of the sky at dusk. “It’s a color that anticipates what’s going to happen next,” said Laurie Pressman, the vice president of the Pantone Color Institute, which selects the Color of the Year.

The Selection Process

The Pantone Color of the Year selection process requires thoughtful consideration and trend analysis. To arrive at the selection each year, Pantone’s color experts at the Pantone Color Institute comb the world looking for new color influences.

This can include the entertainment industry and films in production, traveling art collections and new artists, fashion, all areas of design, popular travel destinations, as well as new lifestyles, playstyles, and socio-economic conditions. Influences may also stem from new technologies, materials, textures, and effects that impact color, relevant social media platforms and even upcoming sporting events that capture worldwide attention.

Houseology have described Classic Blue as

A timeless and enduring hue, Classic Blue is elegant in its simplicity, from dusky skies to indigo oceans, Classic Blue evokes a sense of stylish serenity. Cool, calm and confident, Pantone’s Classic Blue hue is a universal favourite, a shade sure to make an impact on fashion, interior design and textiles alike…

Garden Trading

Pantone’s 2020 Colour of the Year is Classic Blue. A calming, confident hue used to create a foundation to build from in this new decade. Whether you’re ready to go bold or prefer a muted outlook, we have a blue for you.

Here’s how Garden Trading suggest you use blue hues in your home:

Extend to exteriors; blue works just as well outdoors to add a welcoming brightness to your home
Colour pop; just a hint can bring colour to any room
Tactile textures; ease into adding blue without the commitment
Go bold; choose a feature wall and dive right in
Mix it up; pair with warm neutrals and soft woods for a more muted look

Farrow&Ball

Discover our best-loved blues

Stone Blue No.86
Dix Blue No.82

Today’s bright blue skies go a long way to bringing cheer to this otherwise bleak time of year giving a whole new meaning to The Blues!

Its Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas…

My decorative theme this year is very much about bringing the outside in…

Ornamental birds, stags, polar bears, and hares adorn the surfaces, whilst leaves, twigs, and flowers are found on the curtains, tablecloths, and cushions.

The colours of the golden beech tree’s leaves are replicated in the porch with the installation of these Neptune pillar candles. Alongside an oil based Huxley Reed Diffusor emits a subtle blend of landscape scent from a gorgeous matte brown glass bottle. The simple handmade willow wreath was my first attempt at this particular craft.

This natural theme extends into the entrance hall. Here I have used this stunning brown/cream Indigo & Rose throw and cushion to dress my John Sankey slipper chair. The orange rug from Ikea and lampshade from RHS Wisley add a cheerful glow to this otherwise subdued scheme.

On the window cill in the background an Ikea glass vase is filled to the brim with a combination of green, yellow, and orange painted baubles and a wooden star wreath. A choir of angels play their version of “Santa Clause Is Coming To Town” when the music box on which they stand is wound up.

Leading from the hall are the lounge and the dining room. The colours in each are quite different although both rooms are south facing so both enjoy the benefit of the low winter sunshine when it chooses to appear.

In the lounge I have chosen a frosty white colour scheme with highlights of forest green and gold. The handmade paper pinwheels, interspersed with a ski-holiday themed paper chain, set the scene. Fastened to the beams above the fireplace their shapes reflect in the two above-mantle mirrors.

The dining room is dressed with red patterned fabrics in the form of a table cloth, runner, and curtains. The Christmas tree is covered with a mix of gold decorations, white berries, and fir cones (both real and faux).

Red Amaryllis bulbs planted in glass storm lanterns are beginning to shoot out and will hopefully be in flower over the next week or so.

Gold, white, and silver painted fir cones add decoration to glass domes and dishes placed on shelves in the dining room.

Faux stems of Eucalyptus and silver painted berries sit happily side-by-side in this lovely storm lantern. These, and the wintry characters on skis, add a hint of the season to the upstairs landing.

With skiing in mind I have converted my home studio to a “cosy mountain lodge” for the duration of the holiday.

My voluntary work with my local Wildlife Trust enabled me to cut my own pine trees to put in pots outside the window. A toboggan and penguin sit outside the door to evoke a sense of a winter wonderland.

Inside the “lodge” sheepskin rugs and large scatter cushions provide a warm welcome. An ornamental antelope’s head on the wall, and a frosty white tree decorated with glass icicles, are both in keeping with the mid-winter story that is being created here.

I hope you are enjoying the loveliness of the season too and wish you much happiness into the new year and beyond.

Dare To Be Different

Everywhere I look I see images of interiors decorated in daringly dark colours, mostly to great effect.

It takes a huge leap of faith to paint a wall, ceiling, or even a whole room in a deep tone so it is perhaps worth considering a more restrained approach.

Inky blues and charcoal greys have proved very popular, particularly in Scandi and mid-century schemes. I have, however, enjoyed the more recent emergence of charred-wood browns and forest greens.

In my own home I’ve not had the courage to paint whole walls in dramatic colours as I think it would make it feel too depressing with its low ceilings and small windows.

I fully support the Farrow & Ball philosophy that sometimes painting a small, poorly lit room, in a deep dark colour can have the effect of creating a cosy, cocoon-like space. In some instances this is indeed far more successful than trying to make it into something that it is not ie. bright and airy.

For a mere mortal like myself I have settled for splashing the dark shades around in a more refrained manner.

A favourite example of this is my lovely old clock which sits beside a pretty little wardrobe in my hallway. Both are finished in Neptune’s Walnut eggshell whilst the walls against which they are set are painted in Fired Earth’s While Mulberry matt emulsion.

Leading off from the hallway is my dining room which I only recently restyled. I invested in these OKA Stafford dining chairs in Charcoal velvet to compliment my John Sankey slipper chair. The overall effect is that of a more cohesive scheme.

Once again the walls are finished in White Mulberry to ensure that the dark colours do not overpower the room.

Green is considered to be a restful colour which makes it ideal for a bedroom. I’m not sure that this theory applies to the current fashion for Forest green which is a dark hue commonly found in nature. The almost black background of this bedding below adds an air of intrigue to this otherwise calm scheme.

Taking this a step further the en-suite bathroom very much embraces shades of black. Whilst the flooring is a checker board of black and white vinyl the Clawfoot bath is painted in Farrow & Ball’s lead grey Down Pipe.

I’m really happy with my choices but realise there is certainly scope for being a bit more adventurous. That said, at least I can see the spiders against the light coloured back drop!

Whoopee It’s Winter

Sitting on the floor in my studio, surrounded by magazines from over ten years ago, I decided it was time for a serious clear out.

With the recycling bin to the ready I started to thumb through Country Living magazines circa 2002!

I was neither diligent, nor meticulous, but as an article snagged my attention I removed it from the journal and put it to one side.

Very soon I had numerous piles covering my favourite topics; interiors (of course), gardening, recipes, and travel.

Interiors

“Exuberant” was a 2002 description that caught my eye, as the current trend for pared back style couldn’t be more different.

Warm, rich colour schemes, championing florals, nature, and cosy blankets, were at the heart of the featured homes.

I was immediately inspired to add some seasonal charm to our cottage. Putting on one side the pale greys and pinks of the summer I quickly uncovered a red, nature inspired, tablecloth with matching napkins.

Add to this heavy, interlined, Andrew Martin curtains, and suddenly the room felt warm and cosy and ready for the shorter days ahead.

Winter ready

My nod to current trends was the addition of my recently acquired cushion from ALSO Home. With its slogan, “LOVED At First Sight” I thought it added a little 21st century pizazz to the room.

Gardening

Looking at photographs of prairie planting schemes with ornamental grasses interspersed with the fading colours of autumn perennials are an inspiration for next year’s planting scheme.

Currently I am allowing our garden to die back so that the seed heads will provide additional food for the visiting birds.

I also like to collect pine cones so that I can paint them with subtle metallic colours and display them in glass vessels with fairy lights and faux candles. Oh so seasonal!

Recipes

A lot of the recipes that caught my eye were based on seasonal garden produce, such as pumpkins, carrots, onions, pears, and apples.

It reminded me that there were pumpkins in the allotment ready to harvest with which I could make a delicious, heart warming soup.

It is also time to collect seeds from the runner beans and pumpkins to dry and store for planting next spring.

I will leave the orange and purple carrots in the ground as a means of storage and harvest as required.

Travel

Not everyone wants to escape the UK for a dose of winter sunshine. People like me who enjoy the changing seasons will wish to stay firmly in this country and enjoy what it has to offer at this time of year.

Harsh frosts temporarily change the garden landscape into winter wonderlands whilst recent strong winds have removed many of the remaining leaves from trees to reveal skeletal formations.

Fireworks over the river

I love to embrace this time of year.

The excitement of the winter celebrations that start in October and run through to the New Year are reason enough to stay here, at home, and enjoy them while they last.

I hope you enjoy them too!

Blue Monday

Sometimes it’s the little things that make a huge difference and I was thrilled when I succeeded at dying a very tired candlewick bedspread.

Sadly I did not take a “before” shot so I can only describe to you the state of this item prior to its revival. It was a lacklustre shade of peach which, I suspect in reality, was a very washed out orange.

The reason I chose to regenerate it was because it was the ideal fit for the double bed in the attic room above the garage. I had bought a new cover from Ikea but it was not as voluminous as the candlewick “hand-me-down” and therefore never quite lived up to expectation.

Acting on the spur of the moment I headed to our local hardware store and rummaged through their rather untidy selection of DYLON products. I decided to buy two “pods” to ensure a dense and even coverage. I chose Navy Blue, confident that it would reform the counterpane.

Before embarking on the process of dying I machine-washed the item to ensure that it was free of dust and dirt.

The DYLON instructions read:

  1. Put damp fabric into the drum. Remove sleeve, peel off lid and put the DYLON colour pod on top of the fabric.
  2. Run full cycle (30° or 40°C).
  3. Run another cycle (30° or 40°C) – with detergent.

What could be more simple! At the end of the process I had a beautiful navy blue throw that looked brand new.

Navy blue throw

It now acts as a protective cover to my exotic Joules bed linen, as well as adding an extra layer of warmth if required.

Exotic Joules bed linen

Spring Has Sprung

Despite the frosty mornings and overcast April days spring has sprung in my garden.

This past weekend I reaped the benefits of my end of year planting as the very first tulips started to unfurl.

Although I didn’t actually manage to plant these bulbs out until after Christmas I am delighted that they have made such a spectacular appearance.

This stunning example was just one variety from the “Fill Your Vases Tulip Collection” that I ordered from Sarah Raven in November last year.

The colours of this particular specimen are reminiscent of a Guy Fawkes’ night bonfire.

They are so delicate to the eye that they appear to be made of silk organza.

With some fine weather due this week, through to the Easter weekend, I think we are in for a real treat.

I can’t wait for the later varieties to reveal their inner beings. If they’re anything like these forerunners they will certainly be a sight for sore eyes.

With this in mind I will update you with some more fabulous photos at the first opportunity.

Happy Easter!

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