Interiors: Keep the sun shining indoors with another bit of all bright
PUBLISHED: 20:00 12 September 2015 | UPDATED: 15:35 14 September 2015
Â© James Merrell
Soon, summer’s final sunset will have been and gone. But while the weather rules outside, indoors it’s easy to conjure bright rooms to keep the sun shining on the home front
Scents like cut grass, mimosa or even lemon groves can instantly bring summer days to mind, even if the weather outside isn’t co-operating.
“Our home fragrance collection helps the home to feel fresh and light, making summer last that little bit longer. Scent is all about triggering memories and creating atmosphere, and our Happiness Candle, by Jenny Packham, includes a cut grass note as well as mimosa, white neroli and lemon,” says Nicola Elliot, founder of Neom, who specialise in home and personal fragrance.
Why waste time looking up at the sky trying to work out if the weather’s going to change, when you can simply glance at the wall indoors? Bramwell Brown’s weather clock has a barometer tucked inside, and a scene on the front of the clock - depicting sunshine, showers or storms - changes accordingly.
“We British are passionate about observing and commenting on our weather and we thought this was the perfect answer for those who love to weather-watch and can be prepared for any change,” says Rob Leigh-Bramwell, co-founder of the innovative company which is reinventing classic timepieces.
Garden parties needn’t be seasonal if your landscape is always rich and colourful - inside and out. Artificial grass is ‘growing’ in popularity, and now, hot on its heels, comes faux green living wall panels, customisable with a mix of faux plants. These could look lush inside in a dining area, or outside to compensate when your plot’s lost its lustre. “People want to use their gardens all year round to entertain, and a faux living wall is perfect for providing foliage when nature starts shutting down and borders are devoid of blooms,” says Harriet Thompson at Evergreen Direct, whose green wall panels include selection of plants clad on a timber backing.
SAVE THE MEMORIES
Holidays may be over but memories of happy days can stay fresh, with a display of photos taken on trips and days out.
“As an interior designer, I find there’s no better starting point than taking a photographic memory the client loves and designing a space around it, so it has real meaning to them,” says Richard Randall. “One of the of most popular choices for wall displays are summer holiday photos, according to a recent survey, as they instantly lift people’s wellbeing and bring an informal free-spirited feel to a place, as well as injecting loads of personality.”
To make a home an inspiration space, which is always bright and welcoming whatever the season, make the most of natural light and bring nature indoors, suggests leading textile designer, Clarissa Hulse.
“I compensate in dark rooms by adding colour and designs with hints of nature, combined with layered lighting and decorative mirrors to reflect any available daylight back into the room,” she says. “Plants and flowers are essential for me, and I think being surrounded by living things, especially as autumn draws in, is wonderfully cheering.
“I love succulents and have them dotted around my home in decorative pots. Orchids are a labour of love but they last forever, and nothing beats the feeling of getting them to flower again the following year.”
Be bold with colour to brighten spirits on gloomy days, says Sachin Bagga, director of homeware specialists, Sabichi. “Colour’s such a wonderful tool, which can sway thinking and change moods, and it’s not difficult to update or simply redecorate one wall,” he says.
“I’ve used pinks, butter yellows and bright green, which are uplifting and have the effect of ‘turning up the heat’ because we associate them with the colourful exteriors of Caribbean homes. If you prefer to stay with a neutral backdrop, simply add colour in a statement chair or an accessory.”
PICK A PROJECT
Even small improvements can transform a scheme, and you’ll get a warm glow of satisfaction from being shipshape and ready for the change of the season in September.
“Everyone wants to feel at home, yet often it’s the first thing we neglect when busy schedules crowd our lives,” says Holly Becker, author of Decorate Workshop (Jacqui Small, £25), a complete guide to all aspects of transforming a home. “Decorating is an art of creative self-expression, and making something your own is the spice of life. This is the perfect time of year to start a room project, even a small one, like conjuring a creative corner where you can relax or enjoy a hobby during the autumn.”