By Rebecca Lovatt – My English Country Cottage
Summer is officially over…small sob! However much we may try to continue sporting our flipflops it is time to accept that Autumn has arrived and we need to embrace it (mainly because my feet are freezing).
This doesn’t have to mean banishing flourishing florals and covering our rooms in pumpkins, we just need to adjust the colours and tones – move away from pretty pastels and towards richer, warmer hues. We need to let go of the lace and wicker and envelop our homes in linen, wool and rattan.
September has smiled upon us and granted us a period of warm sunshine with the turning of the leaves. This is our starting point for Autumn colours: think lowering soft orange sunshine, dark pinks and purples filling the sky at sunset and highlighting the burnished yellowing leaves on the trees.
It doesn’t need to be typical Autumnal reds, oranges and yellows decor, by embracing more vibrant colours, we can visually allow ourselves to look forward to this next season, to move on from that dastardly good for nothing summer and turn to a new love – a passion for layering, for soft blankets, squidgy cushions, feet toasting fires and romantic candles. We can use jewel tones to excite and inspire. Add pops of emerald green, turquoise and gold, bright pinks, deep purples. Use mustard and ochre yellows but add rich reds and sultry greens. Focus on visually warming the cooler days and evenings with joyful colour.
Pickled Pears creating a warm glow and autumn flowers for a neighbour’s rustic wedding recently
The harvest is over, crumbles are bubbling in the oven and we are eyeing up the Damson gin, take inspiration from these colours of foraged nature and bring some spice and warmth to your kitchen. Channel cinammon, nutmeg, cloves, mulled wine. Fill the room with candles and cover your table in a hot pink tablecloth. Pink is a sign of hope in colour psychology, it is a positive colour inspiring warm and comforting feelings. As we return indoors, allow the kitchen to regain its place as the heart of the home.
Tables can be laden with darker pink or rich green tablecloths. Add chunky wooden accessories – maybe an antique dough bowl filled with Dahlias and Hydrangeas), use heavier rattan placemats and candle holders to inspire thoughts of harvest and add thick linen brightly coloured napkins for more texture and interest. Use silver cutlery to sparkle and reflect the candlelight.
Use brightly coloured candlesticks in jewel tones, break out from classic cream and use coloured candles to add height and radiance to the table. Run riot with foraged delights – add garlands of freshly berried bright green ivy punctuated with dried hydrangeas, blackberries and rosehips, tie jolly ribbons to the back of chairs, carve out windfall apples and place tealights in the top, use fir cones as place name holders. Scatter little acorns across the table. Give your guests an indulgent evening filled with colour and luxury and a sense of cosseting autumnal indulgence.
Seasonal sitting room
The simplest way to create a cosy room is through layers of soft furnishings. Use blankets, throws, even vintage eiderdowns on the back of sofas to allow a form of sense of indulgence. Pick darker colours and warmer textures- perhaps it’s time for tweed and a splash of tartan? Whatever the pattern, make sure that it is soft. My blanket of choice this Autumn comes from the Natural Blanket Company . It is 100% wool, super soft and simply to look at it makes you feel warm! I am also sneakily craving a Kantha quilt from Faro home who I have had the pleasure to work with this month. These quilts look super stylish so they can layer happily on the back of a sofa and are so heavenly to grab in the cooler evenings when it’s time to snuggle up on the sofa with candles lit and hands clasped around a warm mulled cider.
The next simple Autumnal addition is cushions – yes – I am aware that I have a problem with cushions but they are so useful!! They add comfort, texture and colour to our lives as well as being a super simple way to change your decor and you can never have enough cushions. This is a fact. Pick velvets, tweeds, checks, even florals but use rich, warming colours – russety reds, conker browns, moss greens and ochre yellows.
I asked Farheen Allsopp from Faro Home (who specialise in exuberant colourful home interiors) to explain how our interior choice change with the Autumn shift:
“With the seasons changing we are noticing an uptake in sumptuous fabrics and deeper, stronger colours. We have been working with our artisan makers in India to create a cosier warmer pallet, colours like Geranium red, Forest greens, warm golds, amber and navy blue in products like tablecloths, wool throws, quilts and bedspreads. Although we are also die-hard pink fans and there is a shade for everyone, from fresh young blossom pinks, crazy fuchsias to elegant magentas. We find that at this time of year we can add stronger colours and layers to a room, bed or indeed ourselves and move effortlessly into Autumn keeping our sunny dispositions intact with colours, prints and textures.”
This beautifully illustrates why we should change or add to our decor with the new season – I refuse to lie in front of my woodburner bewailing the passing of summer (my usual annual mourn), I have filled my home with rich colours and soft, comforting textures and have refound my sunny disposition – and my furry slippers!
Happy Autumn Cossetting x
Rebecca is lifestyle writer and content creator on Instagram and very important assistant stylist for interiors magazines
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