And so we come to Wales in our tour of the country. And it’s true that styles seem to change a little as we go round. The North, according to Instagram at least, was all about dark and dramatic tones. When we go to the South West, there was still some dark but you were bored by then and wanted something new. When we hit the Midlands, there were complaints from some of you that you were too on trend – blush pink still being a strong colour. So much so that I was compelled to write a post about it last week. Others messaged me privately to say how thrilled they were to be fashionable. Nothing truer that that saying you can’t win ’em all. Damned for being on trend, damned for not being. So what will we find in Wales? Well let’s find out.
First up Reena, from Cardiff, whose images regularly garner thousands of likes; this one of her kitchen was over 9,000. There are many reasons why I love this kitchen – not least the patterned floor. A punchy move but one that elevates from a sea of well-bred grey tiles and really brings in the personality. Also won’t show the dirt and as the mother of three daughters I’m guessing that has turned out to be a bonus.
Staying with muted colours (and no I don’t think we can say it’s a Welsh thing) is this kitchen at Harp Cottage on the Welsh borders. It’s available to rent by the way so do have a look around if you fancy it. Sticking with natural and neutral is the Cardiff home of Beth from Cardiff and I love her modern rustic kitchen.
Moving to a mix of light and dark with the home of Cissy at House Penlan. I love images that allow glimpses of other rooms but also you can see how a dark landing or hall immediately draws the eye to the room beyond and will make it seem lighter.
Now dark walls but with a splash of unexpected colour. These cobalt blue chairs from Libby are a surprise choice and they look almost sculptural against the dark walls. The joy of these scheme is that the walls could stay the same and the chairs could change as often as she can be bothered. Although on balance might be easier to paint walls than chairs. The point is – be brave. In small doses. Don’t be afraid of using a colour – you can always paint over it if it turns out to be not what you expected.
Sticking with navy blue, it’s really having a moment but will be here for a while. Two years ago those that know started talking about the demise of grey and the rise of the dark neutral. Grey, while now a classic, they said was just part of the design lexicon and while it will always be there – waxing and waning in all 500 shades, it has given us the courage to try other colours on our walls. Navy, green, plum and brown. It has taken a little while but it’s definitely true. So we haven’t seen the end of dark walls but from now on they won’t always be grey. Experiment with some of the others.
And so it is with this clever bathroom with its tiles by Marrakech Design and its navy blue sliding doors behind which is a laundry room complete with wall hung radiator, drying rail and extractor. I’m guessing Railings for the colour by the way. And also – sliding doors – brilliant in small spaces or narrow entrances – as long as you’ve got somewhere to slide it too. Just bear them in mind next time you have a project, they can make a huge difference and I don’t think we remember to think of them enough.
Over to Pati’s house and I wanted to include her garden because a) it’s always lovely to see some outside space at this time of year and b) it’s been snowing all week and the garden has become a distant memory and c) just look at that green and black combination. It’s just heavenly.
I don’t often feature children’s rooms. They so polarising and often in blue and pink shades that don’t really work for me but, having said that, if you like this (and I love it) and would like me to do more children’s stuff then let me know. I totally can.
Now that’s the end of Wales so to finish off, we will still get to 10 Beautiful Rooms but we will have one from Ireland and one from Scotland. Seems fair. So this is from Ireland – a classic combination of dark walls, natural wood and leather and lots of plants.
And this, one of my favourite rooms – not least because it’s very similar to my new favourite colour for a sitting room is Scotland and the home of Fiona Cameron. It’s actually Farrow & Ball London Clay if you were thinking of having a repaint but I would advise you order a tester because it doesn’t look that appetising on their website. Like many of their paints it’s one you need to see in real life before you choose.
And those coffee tables are from La Redoute, if you’re wondering. Good aren’t they – especially in a dark room as you can see through them and they counteract the dark walls.
Right that’s round the edges done. Add comments below and remember these are real pictures taken by real people living in real houses.