Top tips for restyling your living room this year
Does a summer pass where you don’t renew your warm weather wardrobe? This year cat-eye sunglasses replaced oversized celebrity shades, cycling shorts replaced denim, and boiler suits boomed. For the spattering of summer we seem to have had, this obligatory wardrobe refresh was perhaps a weak investment. In fact, this summer I for one have spent more time relaxing in the comfort of my living room than strolling in the sunshine. My attention turned to interior design, discovering exciting styles of the season which I could gain more enduring pleasure from than a pair of shorts, which I may or may not be brave enough to try and pull off.
Autumn is on its way
Mid-August it may be, but autumn is well and truly in the air. One way I resigned myself to spending more time in my home during the summer, was by bringing a little of the outside in. Fresh flowers quickly have a slightly dejected aura, wilting within a few days and tending to depress rather than uplift a room. Dried flowers, on the hand, maintain an ethereal delicacy with pastel shades lasting for the duration of summer. Plus, as a longer-term investment, they are far better for the environment. As we grow increasingly more aware of the fragile state of our planet, staying in tune with nature is not only a temporary relief from the technological world we inhabit, but a reminder of the earth that supports us. Handmade sustainable items are a big yes all round.
This focus on the beauty of nature can also be achieved through colour. Living Coral is the season’s shade of choice, bringing the feel of the tropics to any home. It is also an achievement for our times – by rooting a stereotypically ‘feminine’ colour in its natural origins, it becomes ungendered. As boundaries in the fashion world are being broken down through androgynous clothing, it is exciting to see this complimented within interior design.
The strong shade also encapsulates the heat of the summer, for me, far better than cloying pastels. Emboldening curved lines of tub chairs or soft wingbacks, it makes for an elegant addition to any style of living room. Tapping into the minimalist characteristics of the lingering fondness for Scandinavian design, take a peep at designer-inspired brand Jack Stonehouse for on-trend furnishings and bold colours.
Minimalism and the elegance of simple design
Although minimalism may not be everyone’s cup of tea, there is something to be said for the elegance of simple design, especially when accenting your living space. During this disappointing end of summer warm lighting can brighten the rainiest of days, so it is worth paying attention to your light fittings. Although the trend for mid-century everything has waned this year, when used sparingly it adds a retro feel combined with timeless elegance to a living space. Jack Stonehouse’s range of light fittings embody this; from deskside to wall or stand alone. Matt copper finish, simple shades and tripod stands haven’t gone out of fashion in sixty-odd years, so they’re a safe bet for any refurb!
Both useful and beautiful
William Morris once advised not to have anything in your home which you did not believe to be beautiful, or know to be useful. This is a sentiment I have always rejected, because who wants something useful, if it is not beautiful? Why does utility have to be mutually exclusive of stunning design? I’m a sucker for a pretty bit of usefulness, from antique discoveries of oak storage boxes, to the aforementioned sleek light fittings.
Another current favourite find is Jack Stonehouse’s Chester Industrial Wood and Metal Wall Shelf. It is more akin to an antique wall hanging; a piece of art rather than a mere shelf. Plus, it capitalises on the ‘now moment’ of simple layering and open shelving. This juxtaposes the streamlined utility we are seeing in our summer wardrobes, so if for you more is more, do not fear – channel your creativity into your living room instead.