5 ways to use colour and pattern on walls from Tricia Guild

Afraid to use colour and pattern on your walls? Style guru Tricia Guild shares her top tips ...

It’s time to dare to be bolder when it comes to your walls with patterned wallpaper, intense paint colours and wall treatments. These tips and trick from Tricia Guild, founder and creative director of the iconic Designers Guild, will show you how to use your walls to their full effect.

Go on, be brave.

1. Make small spaces seem bigger

“Some say that colour and pattern are hard to use in smaller spaces, but I would say that a large-scale patterned wallpaper could work in a compact room as it tends to draws the eye in and visually elongates the room.”

2. Say no to neutral

“Similarly, using an intense colour in a small space transforms it into a jewel box rather than an unimaginative box room, which would happen if it were painted simply in a neutral colour. Bolder schemes work especially well in a guest bedroom, where behind the door the colour is a surprise and creates a more intimate feel.”

3. Get some light relief

“Panelling can be given a dynamic contemporary look by using a wallpaper design within the frame of the panels. Add visual interest to woodwork by painting it a hue other than the typical white or cream – it can still have a great visual impact in muted shades of green, blue or cool grey. Personally I prefer not to highlight dado rails, cornices or picture frames in different colours, however, as the finish can be rather disjointed.”

4. Go silky smooth

“If you decide to opt for fabric wall coverings such as silk or hessian, these are delicate materials to have on your walls and need to be treated as such, so I would say that they are best used in spaces where the possibility of damage is much less, such as a formal dining room. They are an excellent way of dressing walls that may not be smooth enough for papering or paint.”

5. Set the mood

“When choosing an appropriate wall treatment for a space it’s best to start by looking at the structure of the room, the shape and the amount of natural light. Then spend time thinking about what you want to achieve within the space – is it a place where you will entertain and where you would like to feel energised, or it is a space to relax and escape into?

Colour is emotive and I would suggest spending time researching your own colour sense by discovering which shades you are drawn to and the effect they have on your mood.”

For more decorating ideas, visit the Homes & Gardens website.

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