Spring Decorating - Bringing the outside in

April 23, 2018



It's that time of year when the evenings are starting to lighten and the mornings feel fresh instead of down right chilly... and we start to wake up from our interior cocoon. I for one have taken off two of the blankets that have been weighing down my quilt this long dark winter - lets face it, it has gone on a bit hasn’t it? Three rounds of getting snowed in got more than a little tedious.


What I love about this time of year is the promise and the change that hangs in the air and for me that has to do with whats happening outside in the garden or on the moors and beaches around when I live and work in Devon. More than anything though I want to bring those changes inside my home and allow my home to open up and bloom along with the garden outside. So while I am taking off a few layers on the bed I might be cutting some magnolia stems from the tree along the road, I’m also having a little luxury five minutes of unadulterated internet shopping and purchasing some fresh new zingy cushions to brighten up the sofa. 


Siobhan Hayles Interiors

Sofa in Bumblebee Clever Velvet from Loaf and Cushions Abigail Ahern from Debenhams


Spring can be the time when we all feel really energised into doing bigger jobs which we may not feel like doing in the cold months. So it could be the perfect time to do a little (or big) paint job. It doesn’t have to be a full room make over either, a bit of spring time yellow can be added anywhere as expertly demonstrated by the talented Karen of Making Spaces, she has used the zingy paint colour to expertly highlight the architectural details of this room.

 Making Spaces used Trumpet by Little Greene used to accent the architectural details in this period property


Fellow Interior Design Collective member, Emma Gurner of Folds Inside proves how applying little changes in the smallest room in the house can really have the greatest effect. The downstairs loo or 'Water Closet' is usually a small tucked away space but all members of the family, friends and visitors use the space frequently so its a place you can really have fun with and show some of the true inner you!


Folds Inside


Try painting the woodwork in a contrasting bright pop of colour and the trend for floral wallpapers which is still going strong can be applied to a feature wall or even the ceiling of this little space. I love how Emma has used paper on paper for a truly powerful and fun look and then adorned the window sill with blooms and greenery to enhance the tropical and summery scene.


Bringing plants, greenery and flowers into the home at this time of year is the obvious, easy and least costly decorating idea. House plants have become increasingly popular again of late and its as easy to pick up a couple of faux numbers as it is to get the real deal. They really can make a difference to a room, blurring the edges and filling blank voids to add character to a room.


Emilie Fournet Interiors - Photograph: Rachael Smith


Fellow IDC colleague Emilie Fournet does a wonderful job of creating a simple, elegant and incredibly effective statement piece in the dining area of this London home. Check out her latest Podcast all about how to add greenery to your home here: Plants and Interiors with Emilie Fournet.


And Caroline Firth from Cheshire Interior Design has added abundant greenery to this bathroom scheme where the plants will also thrive in the humid air. 

 Cheshire Interior Design


The garden is the other area of the house we can’t ignore at this time of year but with it still being a little too cold or wet to properly enjoy it a garden room is the ideal solution if you have the space. Any old building or shed can easily be transformed into a “garden room” and any budget however big or small applied.


 The Wood Shed Before


At a recent project I seized the opportunity to turn a wood shed into a garden room and as the house was having a major overhaul I managed to re-use some of the old furniture and create a cosy outside lounge using the old sofas, rugs and furniture.  I even went as far as to put in a log burner (purchased from a house clearance sale) and a string of oversize fairy lights and lamps so that at night it has a wonderful glow, by sweeping the decking into the room too it helped create a cohesive look to the exterior design at the property too and makes a great spot to relax after an al fresco meal.


The Wood Shed Afterwards by Siobhan Hayles Interiors 


This one has no door or window and the forth wall is open to the elements but with the fire on your warm enough to enjoy the space all year around, even when it's raining! 


So, what will you achieve with all that extra spring time energy at your house this year?




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