1. Confident shades at Crown Paints
The paint giant had lots of creative techniques at its show. Judy Smith, its colour consultant, says: ‘This season is all about confidence and expression. We have used vibrant shades to create adventurous combinations and balanced them with calm tones.’
Its three key looks are: Freedom of Expression, which shows how to mix super-bright and rich tones; Playtime, using the prettiest of soft sherbet shades in a graphic style; and Organic Discovery, which offsets bursts of energetic colour with cooler tones.
Walls painted in Bowling Green (left) and Flagon (right) matt emulsion, £25.99 for 2.5ltrs, Crown Paints
2. Super stripes at Little Greene
Painted Papers is a comprehensive compendium of striped wallpapers from the heritage paint and paper specialist. More than ‘just plain stripes’, all 10 designs have been reworked from historic patterns from archives, such as those at English Heritage and Manchester’s Whitworth Art Gallery.
David Mottershead, managing director at Little Greene, says: ‘In reviving these designs we have created a collection to serve homes of all ages and styles.’ Try its decorating trick of contrasting horizontal and vertical stripes for an on-trend look.
3. Top-end tiles at Fired Earth
The new Iridescent glass mosaics range from Fired Earth will be at the top of the wishlist for my own bathroom makeover. Its collections are always high-gloss and high-end, but if you’re only tiling a small area then it could be worth stretching the budget for one-off tiles.
This Spectrum tile design has so much going for it: the quality, the finish, the timeless appeal, and the fact it will work beautifully with traditional or contemporary bathroom fittings.
4. Bold contrasts at Ecos Organic Paints
‘The passion for inky blues is an existing trend that will grow in 2015. Our Artistic Blue is perfect as an accent or feature wall,’ says company founder Ian West.
Colour consultant David Gill also added: ‘Pretty pastels made a return in 2014, but this year there is a twist: they are more muted with a touch of grey. Don’t be afraid to combine these dusky shades with brights such as green or purple.’
5. Modern pastels at Occa-Home
‘This spring, pastels are back, with a particular focus on pinks, yellows and floral patterns,’ says Kate Mooney, CEO and founder of Occa-Home. Her prediction is summed up perfectly with the divine Fiori wallpaper from Cole & Son in collaboration with iconic designer Fornasetti. I can just see this in a light, bright master bedroom or as a grand ‘hello’ in the hallway.
6. The future of colour at Dulux
At Somerset House, Dulux revealed its Colour of the Year 2015, Copper Blush, a versatile shade that works with warm or cool tones, and shared its key new trends. Creative director Marianne Shillingford shared her thoughts about one of the looks, Big Nature, Small Me: ‘It reflects how people are connecting with nature. These are storage-heater colours: they heat up when the sun’s out and release it through winter.’
Another trend that wowed me was Him + Her: ‘masculine’ colours paired with feminine touches.
7. New wave at Graham & Brown
The industrial look is set to become even more popular this season and it’s one of the main trends from Graham & Brown. Paula Taylor, pattern and colour specialist, says: ‘We are reworking traditional brick and stone designs into greyed off-tones, and concrete textures are moving from the cool bar arena into an urban backdrop.’ One of its other trends that feels very new is Surface, which ‘combines the rough with the smooth,’ says Paula. ‘In this trend we will also see the illusion of texture — things appearing 3D when they are actually flat.’
8. Subtle glamour at Superfresco Easy
Superfresco Easy is the name behind the wallpaper that you just stick or unstick to the wall — no faff involved. I caught up with brand manager Nicky Jepson about its new collection. ‘We have seen homeowners drift away from bold feature walls, picking softer colours, prints and textures instead, which can extend around the room,’ she says. ‘Anything with a metallic shimmer gives the home a subtle glamorous feel.’ I loved the Origin print — perfect for a light-filled space.
9. Oasis of calm at Farrow & Ball
Relaxation, reflection and sanctuary were the key words at the Farrow & Ball press show. Its key colours for 2015 are Pink Ground, Light Blue, Breakfast Room Green and Tanner’s Brown — all created to help our rooms free us from the stresses of modern-day living. I think they’re delightful, especially Light Blue, which has silvery, smoky qualities and would look amazing contrasted with a dark grey or even Farrow & Ball’s ever-popular Blackened shade (which looks how it sounds!).
10. Fabulous fabrics at Clarke & Clarke
One of the leading ‘home fashion’ fabric and wallcovering specialists, Clarke & Clarke has launched a bang-on-trend collection of fabrics called Traviata. With a mix of stripes, global, and geometric styles in co-ordinating colours, they all create a striking look, whether used individually or teamed and toned with two or three others.