As we move into autumn the natural look with cosiness and sustainability prevails, says Carol O’Callaghan.
In spite of the fact that by August every year I’m spouting forth about winter topics, it seems almost profane to talk about hunkering down for the chilly season when we’re still enjoying a real honest to goodness summer — hello sandy beaches and long, cooling alfresco cocktails.
But tempus fugit and before we know it, more familiar temperatures will descend without warning. For autumn and winter, there are some stylishly wholesome interior prospects emerging to curb the post-summer melancholia and get you excited about sprucing up your home.
First up is the bohemian house
Stop right there: Before you attempt to move on quickly to the next trend, thinking boho veers too much towards clutter and new age hippy-dippy themes, there’s not a bit of either.
The bohemian house gives all the signs of casual chic, taking inspiration from vintage objects with contemporary twists along the way. It seems laid back but it’s actually a deliberate accumulation of new pieces to reflect the needs of modern living, alongside treasures picked up from family and vintage outlets.
There’s a lot going on in this look, especially with textures, so think everything from furry sheepskin rugs to 1970s peacock chairs, with a practical modern and neutral IKEA sofa. Add in the inevitable accessory for 2018, the leafy outsize potted houseplant, and you have the look to create a relaxing environment which prompts visitors to slow down to look at the finer details among your arrangements of objects.
Next comes a look which has grown out of an ever-evolving environmental conscience. Retailers who have the wit to realise the need to respond to this, are directing us to neutral tones and natural materials.
With so many companies jumping on the worthy sustainability bandwagon, finding products made from recycled wood, plastics, and 100% cotton and linen textiles is no longer such a challenge. It’s guilt-free shopping with an emphasis on buying less but buying better. Greengorgeous.ie makes kitchen textiles from ecologically sustainable materials with low environmental impact manufacturing. Heybulldogdesign.com makes furniture and homewares from salvaged materials.
It’s time again for the Danish invention, Hygge
At its simplest, it’s a cup of hot chocolate after a brisk walk in the chilly air, and lighting the fire, before curling up with a book. For 2018 the trendsetters are getting plenty of mileage out of this one as they channel the idea of making winter living as cosy as possible.
This season — especially if you have a Scandinavian inspired interior with white and blue or a completely neutral palette — the new approach introduces trending colours including mustard yellow, pink and grey for a soft approach to achieving a winter warming layer.
Now for a challenge
Dark walls made an appearance about three years ago, and while the stylists were having fun experimenting with indigo blue, deep emerald green and burgundy after boom years of brilliant white and pared back furnishings, few of us were willing to darken down in the interests of fashion.
Haven’t we been indoctrinated into the belief that light colours and neutrals are the way to go for space-enhancing qualities?
It’s true, but there’s an alternative notion where we might be persuaded to go dark in small spaces which are challenging to decorate and furnish, and where it seems embracing the dark and using these rich pigments to foster cosiness, also yields the spin-off of adding depth and character.
As someone who is neither in the mood nor the market for a decorating project or major purchase any time soon, the coming season will have me eager to indulge my favourite activity — looking at spaces to see if there are new ways of laying them out.
And this can mean creating fresh arrangements of favourite objects on the mantelpiece or a kitchen shelf, so it not only refreshes a space, but reflects my personal tastes and interests.
Ask yourself if the focus of the sitting room is directed at the television? Maybe the furniture could be rearranged for freer flow of conversation, or the focus redirected towards the fireplace. Sorry, folks, but the fireplace will be running at full capacity before we know it and we’ll welcome its return to take the chill off the season.