A couple of months ago we began work on a family home that was mid-way through an extension and reorganisation of layout. The flow of the rooms wasn’t working for the family and needed to be reconfigured to fit the needs of work, leisure, and growing children. We came on board to help turn the reconfigured space into a warm, colourful and inviting family home!
The brief was for a contemporary and colourful look that was elegant but practical. Long term the plan was to renovate most of the house, but it would be done in stages. Our immediate priority was a new entrance hallway, a family room, a bedroom, and a games/homework/hang-out den. We have an extra soft spot for clients who love – and want – colour in their home, so it was a real thrill to put together mood boards, colour palettes and fabric swatches mixing bold colour, gorgeous textures and beautiful prints and patterns!
When it comes to sumptuous fabrics and bold colour, the French designers are second to none so we recruited the oomph and clout of design heavyweights Pierre Frey, Boussac, Casamance, Christian Lacroix, and Manuel Canovas. Unsurprisingly, these went down a treat with the homeowners. (FYI: Once you’ve seen and touched beautiful fabrics and products, you’re positively ruined for anything else!)
As you can see, the first stage of meeting clients is akin to being like children in a toy shop excitedly perusing all of the wonderful colours and shapes and glossy boxes! We presented our ideas and poured over sample cuttings and began to build a better picture of 1. what the clients were drawn to, and 2. what worked in the space. Sometimes we work with clients who are unsure of their style and what kind of space they want to actually live in, and we like to to give a little direction and prompting without losing a sense of their personality and aesthetic. These clients were very sure of what they liked which made the process much easier and quicker!
After a series of meetings with the homeowners and a few tweaks and changes to the schemes, we began to finalise a plan and schedule of work. We’ll be posting about all of the schemes and plans we’ve made, and over the next few months we’ll keep you up to date with how this project is coming to life.
First up is the Family Room. Here are the finalised moodboards and palette for the space:
Did we mention that we like colour and pattern?… As you can see, this scheme POPS and we love it! we’re laying a gorgeous, reclaimed parquet wooden floor throughout the space which will add serious warmth and character to the space. We’ll be using some of the client’s existing furniture and we’ll add a few pieces to fill out and finish the room – a bespoke new sofa, an armchair, a couple of tub chairs and we’ll be using a couple of gorgeously rich large rugs to zone and break up the room. The moodboards show all of the fabrics we’ll be using for the chairs, curtains, cushions, rugs and the paint colours we’ll use throughout the space. With a stunning view of the garden and the countryside beyond visible through the large windows and sliding doors, we decided to play up the green in this space with sumptuous shades of blue-green. We’ve combined it with touches of warm yellow, rich purple, and little splashes of red and pink (which is a tint of red).
In Colour theory (don’t worry, we’re not going too scientific or theoretical here!), there are basic techniques for combining colours to create a balanced, harmonious look. What we’ve utilised here is a square colour scheme – which basically means using four colours spaced evenly around the colour wheel. Obviously not all colours are used in equal measure – the blue-green is the dominant colour here and the other three colours appear as secondary colours and accents (again, for balance!). With a square colour scheme, you get variety and a mix of both warm and cool colours (yes, again…for balance. It’s all about balance and harmony!).
Here we’ve sketched the basic floor-plan of the Family Room. It’s a large space for watching TV, reading, and relaxing which leads into a space for games, drinks and relaxing. We’ve “zoned” the room (which is basically breaking a large space up into sections or zones for certain uses and tasks. This helps divide up a large space, ensure it’s functional and allows for some fun dispersal of colour and design elements). There’s a natural divide between the lounging space and the games/hang-out area and we’ve utilised rugs in the lounging space to “divide” it into two areas: the TV area and the reading area. We’ve also grouped little units of seating and tables together to facilitate conversation.
Right now, we’re in the midst of getting the work schedule underway and we can’t wait to show you the next stages of the process! Be prepared for oodles of swoon-worthy colour, pattern, texture and sumptuousness coming your way!
If you’re planning a home renovation – whether that’s just one room or a whole overhaul – don’t hesitate to get in touch. We love to talk and we’d love to discuss ideas and plans! We value family, history, personality and lifestyle and are intentional about drawing out your style and personality and creating a beautiful, functional home for you! You can reach us on: 02825 880012 or email email@example.com.
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.