The Golden Age trend draws on the grandeur of the Dutch masters to deliver a sophisticated take on luxurious decorating
Looking for a style update to take you into the new season? If you’re a fan of dark colours and a sumptuous feel to your home then the new Golden Age decorating trend should be a feast for the eyes.
This trend pairs sumptuous fabrics such as velvet upholstery in rich jewel tones with brighter accent colours like coral and chartreuse. Embroidered motifs, lacquered wood and still life floral compositions add to the period feel, while modern shapes bring this look up to date for the new season.
Our Shopping Editor, Tamara Kelly, explains how to create the luxe look of the Golden Age trend at home:
“Be inspired by the Dutch Masters and create a striking background with dark walls painted in tobacco, inky blues, and gunmetal greys. Metallic touches are still key this season but have a burnished finish to suit this more sophisticated style.
“A velvet sofa is the hero piece for this season – opt for a Mid-century shape in 1970s tobacco colours and complement with lacquered wood finishes for console and occasional tables. Soften the look with large-scale floral accessories that have accentuated painterly effects in dark colourways – a circular rug or statement cushions would be perfect.
“Accent lighting is key to creating a nostalgic ambience and it will bring out the shimmer in the lustrous materials – think brass lamps, candelabras and wall sconces for an authentic glow. This look goes all out and is a great choice for a dramatic bedroom or a luxurious retreat from the colder months.”
Key colours: Gold, coffee, dark peacock blue
Accents: Green gold, coral and chalky pink
Velvet, tarnished brass, lacquered wood, embroidery
Hero products: Velvet sofa, brass side table and atmospheric paintings
Margot two-seater sofa, £499, Made.com
The Margot sofa is a golden girl through and through, from her luxe velvet upholstery down to the tips of her elegant brass feet. The creation of British designer Matt Arquette, the Margot’s sensuous, curved back and unusual button detail conjure up images of cocktail hour circa 1974.
Set of three copper-effect hanging mirrors, £40, Laura Ashley
The copper trend may be on the wane, but the russet frames of these classically-inspired mirrors have a timeless appeal that will never go out of style. Group them close together in a hallway where both the mirrors and the copper will cast a reflective glow on the room.
Berlingdot Long Velvet Cushion, £55, Iosis at Liberty
Want to add instant allure to a bed or sofa? You can’t go wrong with a velvet cushion. This plush little number by cushion couturiers Iosis positively glows with glamour. But flip it over and the golden tones are balanced with rustic linen – a combination the Dutch Masters would certainly have approved of.
Lady Kristina in Film Noir Vintage Velvet Cushion, £135, Liberty
Speaking of the Dutch Masters, they didn’t half love a floral still life – the darker and moodier the better. This ties rather nicely into the dark botanics trend that’s currently blooming in contemporary interiors. Liberty’s Lady Kristina fabric seems a suitably decadent way to work it into your scheme, and this opulent cushion would make a striking sofa mate to the Berlingdot cushion above.
Alexander Gold Curtain Fabric, £50, Laura Ashley
The flattened florals of Art Nouveau underwent a bit of a revival in the 1970s and can still cut a dash on modern wallpapers and fabrics. That said, the retro tendency towards colour clashing may not be to everyone’s taste today, so stick to subtle, tonal hues that will enhance the design without being too in-your-face. Laura Ashley’s gorgeous gold curtain fabric gets it just right.
Leather Pouch Chair, £350, French Connection
This stylishly distressed chair would look right at home in an artist’s studio – be it Hockney’s or Rembrandt’s. Made of iron and 100% real leather, this is a piece of forever furniture that will only get better with age.
Diamond White Wine Glasses in Amber, £50, Out There Interiors
These elegant glasses could have been plucked straight out of a 17th-century painting… that or a 1970s cocktail cabinet. Either way, we’re smitten. The white wine glass (pictured right) is slightly smaller than the red wine glass and is sold as a set of six.
Arc Mid-century Sconce in Antique Bronze, £59, West Elm
If there was one thing the Dutch Masters understood, it was the value of good mood lighting. This refined-looking wall light is the embodiment of chiarascuro, with its sleek, dark sconce and contrasting bronze detail. Plus it offers up a quirky combination of traditional and mid-century modern design.
Bedford Brown Emulsion Paint, £33 per 2.5L, Abigail Ahern
What does every dark and dramatic design scheme need? A dark and dramatic backdrop, of course. This rich brown paint by Abigail Ahern will make the perfect blank canvas to set off opulent jewel tones and lustrous glimmers of burnished gold.