Here we are in October already. I know it’s a cliche of aging that time seems to speed up but someone said the other day that September had lasted about 10 minutes – in contrast to January which – as everyone knows – lasts nearly a year. But here we are, it’s officially Autumn and while the leaves still look green from my window I’m sure they will start to turn soon. Has anyone put the heating on? We’ve lit the fire a couple of times and I’ve definitely put the t-shirts away in favour of evening sweaters but I’m not ready to concede defeat yet.
So we’ll start with this lovely summery bathroom belonging to Jules Haines, the founder of Haines Collection, which has featured on these pages many times before. For those of you who don’t know, Jules salvages textiles from designer brands and leftovers from projects (once grabbing armfuls of unopened silk wallpaper rolls from a skip) and sells them on her site for a fraction of the original price.
This bathroom, from a feature on her whole house in yesterday’s You magazine, is utterly gorgeous and full of thrifty ideas. If you fall in love with a gorgeous but expensive wallpaper then, rather than a familiar feature wall, why not use it all round the room but only halfway up (or down)? Panelling like this can be made from strips of MDF and painted or you could just paint one half of the wall and add a length of wooden architrave between the two.
Blinds use less fabric than curtains and Jules sells in tiny amounts so if you just want a single metre to cover a chair or still then she’s the place to start.
Staying with bathrooms and this is the designer Flora Soames‘ childhood bathroom as featured in World of Interiors. An accomplished designer of both wallpaper and fabric, Flora’s first book is now out. Her fabrics – parchment Dahlias above, are sumptuous and, if budgets are tight, I just had a quick look on Haines and she has some Soames fabrics in stock.
Now clearly this bath in a nook is a whole design feature that most of us don’t have, but the splashback (is that the name for it when it’s a bath?) is a way of making the bath feel more luxurious. There are lots of beautifully shaped tiles around these days so rather than filling in a rectangle block you could make more of feature of it by arranging your tiles to make a statement or choosing tiles in more unusual shapes. Robyn Donaldson has done that beautifully in her kitchen using a mixture of shapes.
A similar palette of dusky pinks in this bathroom but stripes instead of florals. This time the panelling is thin stripes of wood which you can find if you search for half dowel wall panels. If you feel you need tiles then there are lots around at the moment – here’s one example from Ca Pietra. It’s a really simple way of just adding a little bit more detail.
If you want to keep your colour palette fairly pared back or neutral (and no-one needs that much competition in a bathroom) then remember to add different textures to keep it interesting. Here the wooden table brings warmth, the marble floor brings luxe while the wooden panelling links to the striped towels and this is achieved within three basic colours of black, white and pink.
More panelling and wallpaper for you this but this time in a much darker and more dramatic colourway. The basin is almost skeletal – in that you can see all the workings – and that makes a great contrast to the opulence of the decor. I’m sharing this image as it was posted by Gemma Moulton of East London Cloth, who also makes fabrics and has just launched a new range called Sottofondo – a collection of sumptuous textiles that are designed to be subtle enough to work in all manner of schemes while still remaining a presence in the room.
Finally, the cafe curtain is a trend that shows no sign of disappearing and textile designer Tori Murphy has now expanded to dresser curtains to hide pots and pans where there might not be room for doors to swing open. She has a beautiful range of stripes and checks of all sizes and you can leave the curtains loose at the bottom as in the image above or fix them top and bottom which works well on a door or window.