With a rainbow of possibilities it seems a shame not to embrace more than a sliver of the kaleidoscope. The use of colour can seem a mysterious alchemy and there is certainly a lot of science behind colour theory, from the way light interacts with different textures and finishes, to the psychology of colour. But colour, like most things is instinctive above all else. We are drawn to certain palettes, and whether it's rich saturated colours, that make us feel at home or delicate, soft tones, there is every reason not to shy away from colour.
There are many things I'm not good at, running, cooking savoury food, not creating spontaneity sapping itineraries for holidays, to name but a few, however, one gift I have is a fine tuning to colour and confidence using it. The latter is as much important as the former when it comes to sticking to your gut and going for it.
Confidence is something that grows and a little experimentation is often the best way to start pushing your creative boundaries to get a good feel for what you like. To encourage others to dabble with colour I've jotted down a few of my top tips...
LOOK AT YOUR WARDROBE
It may sound daft but often, though not always, we are attracted to the same kinds of colours for our homes as our clothes and looking through your wardrobes can be a brilliant place to identify what colours you relate to. My own wardrobe is full of black, white, turquoise, coral, blue and red, so it was no surprise that when it came to decorating at home these colours were prominent ones.
BROWSE INTERIORS MAGAZINES
Seeing that something daring can be done with panache can prompt even the most reluctant colourists to give experimentation a go and interiors magazines are one of the best places to draw inspiration from, especially as there has been such a boost in popularity for colourful homes after a decade of grey.
One of the most exuberant examples I've seen recently is a sitting room by Beata Heuman in House & Garden where strong pink walls provide the backdrop to midnight blue velvet armchairs. A slightly unusual combination but a very beguiling one!
CHOOSE COLOURFUL UPHOLSTERY
If painting your walls in colour seems daunting, picking a neutral paint and using colourful upholstery to add oomph can be a wonderful way to add colour and emphasise the curve of a headboard or shape of a sofa.
EMBRACE COLOURFUL TEXTILES & ACCESSORIES
In our recently completed 'HIGH RISE GLAMOUR' project our client asked for the studio to create an elegant and serene apartment that would provide the perfect sanctuary to their busy City life. They were keen to keep things soft and pared back, preferring metallics and champagne tones, but with a little bit of gentle coaxing they plumped for carefully chosen colourful touches, such as, hand glazed celadon ceramics and vibrant Ottoman silks that provide just the right amount of drama.
PAINT WOODWORK & KITCHEN CABINETS
Another effective and joyous way to add colour is to paint woodwork and joinery, including kitchen cabinets, in interesting and unexpected colours. Whilst white kitchens are classic, there are a lot of them and by going for something unusual such a glorious mossy green you can create something that instantly feels bespoke. This gorgeous kitchen by Middleton brings leads the eye to the lush garden and despite the bold colour has a restrained simplicity when read against the whole walls and simple shaker style that has forgone wall units for a streamlined space.
Online emporium of beautiful things, LAYER HOME, recently invited the studio's Director, Anouska, to share her design tips and insight with their readers.
Check out their chat in our latest blog post below...
As a member of House & Garden magazine’s prestigious directory of designers ‘The List’ and a favourite amongst corporate clients, entrepreneurs and familiar faces, Anouska Tamony Designs is an award-winning studio. The eponymous founder, Anouska, trained at KLC School of Design before cutting her teeth working on luxury multi-million pound refurbishments. The boutique design studio creates individually beautiful spaces, merging elegant styling with charming, unexpected details. As a self-proclaimed fan of vintage furniture, Anouska manages to merge this with sleek influences to create stylish homes that each reflect their individual owners.
We’re delighted to chat to Anouska about her signature look, her favourite design classics and what makes a perfect Sunday!
Does your studio have a signature look? If so, how would you describe it?
As the granddaughter of a couture seamstress whose studio proved a treasure trove of interesting finds to me as a child, colour and pattern usually make an appearance, though the chemistry and contrasts could be subtle and delicate or playful and bold depending on the mood I’m seeking to conjure.
My designs often mix classic with contemporary and almost always include statement lighting, interesting rugs and unexpected flourishes.
In terms of furniture, what design classics standout for you?
An avowed fan of deco and oriental pieces, my boyfriend who studied furniture design, introduced me to the beauty of linear modernist pieces when we met around 5 years ago and I’ve grown very fond of the simple elegance of design classics, such as Hans Wegner’s Wishbone and China chairs (though ironically the latter was inspired by 17th century Chinese classics) and Mart Stam’s cantilevered chair.
What would be your top interior design tip for our readers?
Be daring. I understand where fitted kitchen and bathroom furniture is concerned you’ve got to be particularly prudent but where decisions are not too expensively changed, like paint colour or soft furnishings, try not to fear the odd mistake and enjoy the experimentation.
What does home mean to you?
A place for relaxing with and entertaining family and friends, as well as a place for indulging in the occasional solitary evening with a glass of whiskey and a good book.
What are your three most treasured pieces?
Our home is filled with lots of treasured bits and bobs, I jokingly call them ‘artifacts’ – some collected on our travels, some sourced from dealers and antiques markets, and some inherited.
If I had to pick my three favourites would be; The wonderfully fluffy and soft Berber rug my boyfriend and I bought in one of Marrakesh’s vibrant bazaars, an orthodox icon I bought in a basilica in Sofia, because it’s so delicately gilded and detailed I can’t help admire it and finally, a late 19th century rosewood opium table I inherited that was shipped over from Malaysia when my mother moved to England in the 1950s with my grandparents.
A perfect Sunday is…
Brunch and cocktails at Pedler in Peckham before a post-prandial stroll across the Rye.
If you could choose one piece from Layer, what would it be and where would it live?
This bobby dazzler…
Read the original article and browse LAYER HOME's tempting things at...layerhome.com/meet-designer-anouska-tamony/