In the middle of or thinking about re-styling your home? Create your perfect interior space with a simple touch of colour.

Adding a touch of colour to a room or just a bit of personality and flair can make a world of difference when it comes to styling, you’ve just got to know how to do it right!

We spoke to Homemaker The Valley’s resident stylist, Morgan Braithwaite to find out what’s trending in the home this summer and to get her tips on creating the perfect interior space.

So Morgan, what’s trending in the interior styling world?

Right now, there’s a huge emphasis on materiality and layering of textures to create a warm atmosphere in the home. Things likes using a combination of different timbers to stone, including marble and granite and mixing these materials with elements, such as glass, metal copper and brass, metallic like finishes.

The layering of materials continues in soft furnishings too, accessorising with the use of other textures such as jute, linens and some fresh green foliage will finish the styling.

For the colourful personality types out there, how would you incorporate colour and flair into your home without going overboard?

There’s no such thing as being too crazy with colour!

The only way I believe that you can go overboard with colour is when you try to colour match or colour co-ordinate everything around the room, it makes the room seem to posed and over styled.

Just take a few colours and further develop it by looking into different shades and tones of the same colour.

What colours work well together?

Neutral colour palettes always work well when styling a room. Start by creating a base colour palette with materials already used in your home. Finishes and larger furniture items can be a great way to develop a colour palette. For example, the grey tones in sofa fabric or floor tiles, to the use of soft pastel nudes and pinks inspired from copper or brass finishes.

You could even introduce different shades of green and emerald through plants and foliage!

If your house has more monochromatic internal finishes, continue this palette with black, white and different tones of grey. Bring in some bold, deep tones of midnight navy and dark khaki to slightly soften the use of black and white, and to create depth and interest in your scheme.

What rules should you follow, when it comes to styling a darker room?

Try to go with warmer tones if you have a dark house as dark spaces often mean that they’re not getting enough sunlight and warmth. However, remember that warm tones does not mean you have to stick to cream and beige, there are warm tones of greys and white and it’s just a matter of getting the right advice from your local paint counter.

What about a lighter room?

Rooms that are light mean that there’s a lot of sunlight coming through, which also means that the room can be very bright. Therefore, it is important to not introduce colours that are too white or stark, which can make the room even more bright and reflective on the eye.

What if you’re styling on a really tight budget?

The absolute cheapest and quickest way to re-style and refresh your home is to look at bringing some of the outside in. It’s amazing how much of a difference pot plants and displays of foliage and flowers can make to a room. Anything from cheap pops of colour by flowers, to statement, more sculptural plants in large, interesting pots.

Another great way to re-invent your home is to start some DIY projects with small second hand furniture pieces like small side tables, chairs and benches. Give them a coat of paint or a varnish and then style them with some of the latest patterns or colours.

Do’s of styling?

  • Do make sure you inject personality into a space and make it your own. Some of the most sophisticated home interiors are the ones that speak about the people that live in it.
  • Do display that special vase that you found overseas, those family heirlooms and collectables around your home.
  • Do play with palettes that you love, from bold and bright to soft and neutral.

Don’ts?

  • Don’t get too caught up on styling rules, beautifully styled spaces are ones that look effortless and creating interest by testing the rule book.
  • Don’t style your home like a ‘display’ or showroom, make sure it looks more comfortable and ‘lived’ in. People get too caught up in how great displays look in merchandising, photography and in display homes and think that it needs to look that way in their home.
  • Remember what the space is used for, homewares are displayed in a shop for sale and when you put it in your home it now has a purpose for you, make sure that you re-create what you buy with your own style and how you like to live.

Lastly, what are your top tips for the aspiring home stylists out there?

  • Think about flow of space within in the room and the use of larger items such as furniture within the room. Once the floor plan and flow throughout the room is sorted then you can think about adding smaller items and then finalising the scheme with accessories.
  • Cluster your accessories into little groups to create a feature and impact with layering of different shapes, sizes, finishes and colours. A great way to cluster is to style accessories on different sized trays or large platters, which are everywhere at the moment.
  • Make sure that you have positive and negative spaces visually, with clear focal points paired with empty spaces.

If you are in need of some styling advice, Morgan Braithwaite is available for free styling sessions at Homemaker The Valley – located on the corner of Ann and Wickham Streets, Fortitude Valley.

For more information or to book a session visit www.homemakerthevalley.com.au/stylist

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