One of this summer’s biggest trends, pastels are the perfect way to inject some light, life and colour into your home. But forget pale, wishy washy shades, this season’s pastels are brighter and punchier – think candy pinks, mint greens, sky blues and calming lilacs.
I was thrilled to style up a room for a feature in The Sunday Mirror’s Notebook magazine recently, showing readers how to get the pastel look. The brief? The sofa/armchair were to be from DFS, and everything else had to be affordable and from the high street.
The end results are above and below. To help you recreate the look, here’s my tips on being pale yet interesting…
- Take a wow factor wall canvas or cushion as a starting point; then pick out colours from the print to use elsewhere in the scheme. The wall art I used is from Australian website Urban Road, who’ve recently started selling in the UK. Check them out for huge contemporary canvases at really decent prices:
- Pale pastel paint is a fresh alternative to white. Mix things up by pairing green and blue or pink and yellow on different walls.
- Light natural wooden furniture in oak or ash will warm things up; then add a colour-popping metal side table or two:
- A grey sofa is a good investment. It will ground the room – stopping it from feeling too girly – and should work with almost any other scheme should you wish to redecorate in a couple of years’ time! I loved the retro-feel of the DFS Mira sofa and accent chair I used in the shoot.
- Add retro accessories – an old skool radio (the one I used is a steal from Argos) or phone, or a vintage-style armchair will give your room personality:
- Avoid colour overload by keeping curtains sheer; then add a white or neutral blind if you need more privacy.
- Use flowers to accessorize all areas Go big and bold with pink or white blossom and catkin branches; or dainty and delicate with pastel freesias, peonies or tulips. The flowers you want not in season? Cheat with fakes from Bloom or John Lewis – these days they’re so well made you can hardly tell the difference unless you get up close.
- Pale wood flooring will keep the scheme looking modern, while a pale candy-striped rug will help subtly define your seating area. The one I used is from an amazing website called CarpetVista – if you’re after a large rug on a small budget, they’re well worth checking out.
AND HERE’S WHERE TO BUY EVERYTHING…
Mira 3-seater sofa £999 DFS; Mira accent chair £669 DFS; Ben de Lisi set of two metal tables £95 Debenhams; Wire table £75 Oliver Bonas; Cotton stripe rug from £70.84 Carpetvista.com; Tuscany sideboard £159 Very.co.uk; Tuscany ready assembled large bookcase £199 Very.co.uk; Spring Rain canvas from £64.34 UrbanRoad.com.au; George Nelson blue block clock £65 Bluesuntree; Wall print £19.50 for pack of four Marks & Spencer; Green scandiphone £41.95 bloomsburystore.com; Lavender patent pocket Filofax £28 Filofax.co.uk; Bamboo gloss lacquer bowls £5 (small) £12 (large) Oliver Bonas; Bush Retro DAB Radio £69.99 Argos; Aqua wire fruit bowl £15 Debenhams; Superliving candlesticks from £17 each Northlighthomestore.com; Maxi tealight holder £2 Tesco; Beehive throw in rose £49 Welshblankets.co.uk; Herringbone throw in apple green £49 Welshblankets.co.uk; Blue Brakig cushion £10 Ikea; Heron cushion £20 Magpieline.com; Diamond cushion £8 Tesco; Balloon cushion £8 Tesco; Quilted Diamond Persimmon cushion £35 Nitin Goyal; Graduate Collection Geo Pastels cushion £40 letitreign.co.uk; Dulcie frame £14 Oliver Bonas; Soy Wax scented candle no.3 £9.95 Dotcomgiftshop.com; Cockatoo on perch £16.95 Rigby & Mac; Meow storage tins £12 for three Magpieline.com; Lavender Knitted Pod £70 Next; Artificial blossom and catkins £15 each Bloom.uk.com
Above: Me, working my (ahem) magic!