Good morning friends and followers! It’s August already! Anybody wonder where this year has gone? We’re well into the second half of 2018 and we’re excited for what the rest of the year will bring. Have you any plans, goals or things to look forward to in the next few months?
Today we’re showcasing a wonderful house we worked on over the last couple of years, and we finally got our photography through and we’re thrilled to share this colourful, eclectic, contemporary home! Grab a cuppa and swoon over the gorgeous colours, prints and shapes in this bright, spacious home! (we’ve wiled away MANY an hour doing this!)
To give a bit of background, the house was a contemporary new build in a fabulous rural setting in Co. Down. The homeowners were a couple who had recently sold up their family home after their children had flown the nest, but wanted a space for visiting friends, family, and guests. The brief was to create a completely different style from the previous family home which had been much more traditional in its design. What really thrilled us was that this was a couple who weren’t afraid to embrace colour, pattern and a whole new style!
Some of our projects involve a single room or a couple of rooms in a house and the challenge is to maintain cohesion between the “old” rooms and the “new” rooms. We enjoy the challenge of working with what is already there – sometimes boundaries bring out some really creative ideas! But we love whole house projects because they’re a different sort of challenge – to create a unified cohesive look from the front hallway right through to the top room of the house. We don’t really like to stick rigidly to design “rules” but interior design theory dictates that there should be unity and harmony in any space we create – and this is especially important when it’s our home; a space we spend a lot of time in. Nothing worse than an unbalanced, uncohesive space making us feel uncomfortable or uneasy!
But enough design theory for now, let’s crack on with photos!
We decked out the hallway in a STUNNING Elitis beaded Panel – it’s essentially a piece of art for your walls painstakingly made up of tiny coloured beads to create an incredibly eye-catching, gorgeously textured, and rich statement piece in your home! Perfect for using in a front entrance hallway to make an epic first impression! The Hall Chair has been covered in a fabulous Christian la Croix cotton featuring a gorgeously detailed digitally printed butterfly print. The Light Fitting (mimicking the lines in the Elitis Wall Panel!) is from our friends at Moy Lighting in Dungannon – they stock a huge range of beautiful lights for all budgets and the service is second to none so be sure to check them out!
The Living room is a sumptuous cacophony of aquamarine blue and orange with touches of royal blue, citrus green and warm grey. Blue is a perfect colour for a living space because it creates a soothing, calming and tranquil space – perfect for relaxing in! We’ve knocked it up a notch by using a bright aquamarine textured wallpaper with a vibrant warm yellow stripe though it and paired it with blue’s complementary colour, orange for a bold, vibrant look. Have a look at the details!:
The Living Room leads into the Dining area and Kitchen where we’ve utilised a similar palette: orange, citrus green and blue to ensure flow and cohesion between the two spaces. How gorgeous is it looking across the living room and picking up the similar tones and hues in the dining space?? We’ve used another stunning textured Elitis Panel on the wall to create a bright, statement-making space! Certain to brighten up any dull morning or gloomy winter evening!
Gorgeous! (..if we do say so ourselves!)
In the Study we carried through the orange from the living and dining spaces with two sets of curtains from one of our favourite French designers: Manuel Canovas – particularly renowned for his sumptuous use of colour and quirky designs. We love that embroidered curtain draped across that single window – so rich! We’ve complemented the curtains with tones of violet, crimson and grey in the cushions. An informal but sophisticated space to read, play music or catch up on work!
In the Bedrooms, we carried through the violet, blue and citrus green tones from the ground floor rooms to maintain the flow throughout the whole house, but we changed up the style and look to give each room its own character. First up is the decadently cosy violet bedroom!
On the Curtains, stool, scatter cushions on the bed, and wrapped around the back of the armchair are the fabrics of ‘Earthed by William Clarke’ – designed, made and printed in the oldest surviving linen factory in Ireland. It’s a real joy for us to find and us local designers, artisans and makers; they add such a special touch for us as interior designers. They’re also a special touch for the client – to essentially have a piece of local history and artistry in their home…it carries so much more weight than a room crammed with mass-produced products. Have a look around their site and explore their work – they fuse traditional and modern design, utilising bold colour and meticulous craftsmanship.
We love how fresh but cosy this room is! Purple is a tricky colour to use – it can easily look cheap or dated, but we love how its turned out here: warm, contemporary, bright, sharp and grounded by pops of taupe and icy blue. Once again, our friends at Moy Lighting provided the wall lights which are just the perfect finishing touch to the space!
A spare room gets bedecked in fresh florals and velvets from Designers Guild. We love paying attention to small details in design and over the years, many clients have returned to us because of our attention to the details and often-overlooked finishing touches. Note that gorgeous metal pole finished with an acrylic finial and acrylic rings? Just perfect for the curtain and for the look of the room. Note also the fun pom-pom trim around the scatter cushion…you really can’t go wrong with a pom-pom!
Another spare room is furnished with Designers Guild, Sanderson, and Osborne & Little (again, picking up the blue, citrus green and purple hues from the rest of the house!). The Designers Guild Floral used throughout the space is so fresh and adds such vibrancy and cheerfulness to the space. It’s a fresh and sharp space but also incredibly soft and cocooning.
Note again the trimmings on the scatter cushions and the throw on the bed – they just finish off the pieces impeccably! Details matter!
As you can see, this house is a wonderful cacophony of colour and pattern – but all utilised thoughtfully and cohesively. We love how each space has its own personality and look, but all of the rooms work together and make use of similar tones and hues. Next time you’re redecorating, consider your house or apartment as a whole rather than a lot of separate rooms. Consider how you can create a cohesive, harmonious flow between the rooms, whether that’s using similar colours throughout the house as we have, or utilising the same flooring materials throughout, or using similar artwork throughout the house.
If you’d like any more help with redesigning and decorating your home – whether it’s one or two rooms, or a whole house overhaul – don’t hesitate to get in touch! We’d love to advise, listen to your ideas and make your home fit your needs and aesthetic. Call us on 02825 880012 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also find us on Houzz, Instagram and Facebook!
All photographs by our wonderful photographer Andrew McMillan. You can find more of his exquisite film and digital work here.
Every March sees a flurry of activity from Design Houses and Retailers around the world as preparations are finalised for the release of Spring/Summer collections.
Paris starts the year off with a bang with the iconic ‘Maison Objet’ and ‘Paris Deco Off’; with London picking up the mantle with ‘London Design Week’ at the beginning of March. As ‘the beast from the east’ unleashed its fury across the U.K. and Ireland, we nervously packed our suitcases and geared ourselves up for snow, blizzards, and monstrously high drifts. Thankfully, the snow had cleared up and the sun was even making an appearance by the time we had landed! We dropped our suitcases at the hotel and dashed to the Chelsea Design Centre which was magnificently bedecked in fresh mint greens, soft pinks and lilacs, vibrant foliage, and an abundance of blossom spilling out from every surface, nook and cranny.
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Fuelled by an plethora of tea, Krispy Kreme doughnuts and incredible Thai Food, we delved into magical worlds of embroideries, silks, exquisite trimmings, lustrous wallpapers, sculptural light fittings and sumptuous textures over the next three days. So many wonderful companies and products! But we’ve collated some of our favourite companies and collections from the week. Have a look at what’s tickling our fancy this season:
We’re familiar with the quirky designs of Jim Thompson. He draws a lot of inspiration from Eastern cultures, history and motifs. We love his collection of richly coloured silks but it’s his collaboration with Dutch designer Gert Voorjans that bowls us over. It’s fun, bold and fearless!
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We may have mentioned before, but we love Pierre Frey. A total French powerhouse! You’re guaranteed fun, unusual, beautifully made designs and their most recent collection ‘Araphos‘ doesn’t disappoint!
SAMUEL & SONS
We’re firm believers that details matter. What often makes a space really special and interesting are the little details that are often overlooked – a beautifully pleated curtain, a colourful trimming on a cushion, or upholstery stitching in a contrasting thread. Samuel & Sons are masters of beautiful trimmings which create the most beautiful details for soft furnishings. We fell in love with their gorgeous window display featuring their distinctive trimmings!
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Etamine is unmistakably French with a Mediterranean touch. We love the bright, fresh, romantic feel it brings to a space; utilising both soft, dreamy colours and splashes of stronger hues. So versatile! So easy to use and love!
William Yeoward is a long standing name in Interior Design and we love the eclectic, modern British feel of his fabrics and furniture. It’s superb quality, versatile in traditional and more contemporary spaces, and it always guarantees a sense of wit, fun and colour! It never fails to make us smile!
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A powerhouse in Interior Design, Designers Guild is a master brand of colour, pattern and zing! Their iconic florals bedeck interiors the world over; adding freshness, romance and extraordinary colour. They never fail to create a beautiful collection and this season we’re delighted to see their collaboration with American artist John Derian – feast your eyes on that Chaise below…utterly sumptuous!
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There are MANY manufacturers of light fittings and shades, so it’s wonderful to come across a British born company creating colourful, quirky and whimsical Light fittings to spice up every interior! We’ve posted a few snaps below, but make sure to check out tho whole range on their website! Decorative items add such character to a space so we love investing in unusual pieces!
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Phew! We made it to the end! This is just a quick snapshot of bits and pieces that caught our eye during LDW, but over the next few weeks you may see a few other faves pop up here and there. We can’t help it – when we get excited about a fabric design or a wallpaper or a beautiful trimming, we feel the need to share the love! We’ve loved sharing these pieces with you and we hope it’s sparked an idea of something to inject in your own home this season!
If you are planning a renovation – whether that’s a complete overhaul or just a room update – and you fancy some advice or help in making your space more functional, beautiful and unique to you, don’t hesitate to contact us. Send an email Catherine@mcmillaninteriors.co.uk or Ruth-Anne@mcmillaninteriors.co.uk. Alternatively you can phone us on 07808 959212
FINALLY, the sun has made an appearance! It feels like it’s been a long Winter doesn’t it? We’ve wrapped up, hunkered down and tried to ride out this cold, dark and very snowy season; the hope of milder weather, budding flowers and brighter evenings carrying us through! And Winter definitely put up a fight but I think we’re seeing a much needed shift – there’s been blue skies and sun warming our skin. It’s wonderful!
If you’re like us, you may have spent the majority of the last few months under layers of fleece and throws, hesitant to move from the fireside. But it’s March and we’re heralding in a new season! Time to shake off the cobwebs, open the windows and do a thorough Spring clean! An orderly home will mean an orderly mind, will mean an orderly outlook and attitude. So let us help you set your home and your intentions for the next seasons.
This is an obvious one but one we’re often poor at – clear the clutter! Yes we mean old toys, deflated cushions and ornaments that are on their last legs. But this is also the time to cull the wardrobe and decide what furniture, accessories and décor you can dispose of, what you can give to the charity shop, what needs updated, and what you want to keep. Be ruthless but be clever – what can be updated and repurposed? What things are really meaningful to you and your family that should be kept? (Always remember to dispose of unwanted furniture and items thoughtfully!)
2. LET THE LIGHT IN
This is something we do everyday but don’t underestimate its importance. Draw back curtains, open blinds, clear away obstacles from windows; it can still be dark for the next month or so and it’s easy to feel a bit blue when it’s dull. Light will lift your mood and make things feel bright and fresh.
Also consider artificial light in the house – make sure there’s lots of light fittings in every room. We love lots of lamps and clusters of candles in dark corners, on side tables, lighting up hallways; all adding light and warmth and cosiness.
Another trick is to hang mirrors in dark corners and hallways to bounce light around!
3. MOVE THINGS AROUND
We told you this was easy didn’t we?
A great (and inexpensive) way to update is to consider what pieces of furniture, accessories, and furnishings you can move around – within the same room or to another room. Maybe that chest of drawers that’s hiding in the back room would look fabulous (and would be practical!) in the living room? Move around framed art and cushions and throws. Move an armchair from the window to a corner to create a little reading nook. Moving things around will keep it fresh and may surprise you how much you like the new layout!
4. EASY UPDATES
Sometimes a total interior overhaul is necessary, but sometimes you can make quick, cosmetic updates. Here’s some of our favourites:
A pot of paint will instantly change the look and feel of a room (and here’s some free advice: embrace a good dose of colour!)
Change up your cushions and throws to inject colour, pattern and texture.
Hang art and photographs, add a big patterned rug, inject some greenery with plants, change your lampshades, upcycle something to give it a new lease of life.
All easy changes to make but will give your home a fresh new look.
With Spring and Summer approaching now is the time to inject bright colour, crisp whites, fun pattern, uplifting shades and tones to carry the freshness of the outdoors in!
5. MAKE A STATEMENT
After all that you should have your house in good order! So let’s be clever and intentional, take it to the next level and give it some ‘wow’ factor. One of the best ways to add a punch is to create a statement – hang an oversized and eye-catching light fitting, use a fabulously patterned wallpaper, hang a striking piece of art, paint the ceiling in a bright glossy colour! Statement pieces add fun and style and lift a nice room to become a WOW room. However, too many statement pieces will fight and become too busy so keep it to just one or two pieces.
There you go! Five easy ways to get going with a Spring clean up and refresh. It will take time and thought but you’ll be so glad you did it! Shake off the dust and cobwebs of winter and let’s ready ourselves, our families and homes for a bright, colourful and warm Spring and Summer!
Should you require any help with Interiors Projects, whether it’s a room refresh, a few furnishings or a complete overhaul, don’t hesitate to contact us: Phone Catherine – 07808 959212 or email Catherine@mcmillaninteriors.com. We’d love to help.