How to make your home sing with colour by interiors blogger Bright Bazaar

holding image will taylor

It's feeling very cold and grey outside, which is why we asked Will Taylor, author and founder of popular interiors blog Bright Bazaar to give his tips on bringing some much needed warmth to your home.

Colour is not a science

There is a popular misconception that you have to be an expert to add colour to your home. A lot of people talk about the science of colour, they have made it very technical, which turns people off. It makes people afraid to try it. I understand that it can be a struggle to find inspiration but I think it's important to encourage people rather than tell them 'this is how you do it'. 

They think they need to be an expert but colour is very personal. It’s not about following the latest trends, it's nothing more than what you like and want to bring into your home. Red makes one person think of passion or anger, another warmth or comfort. It’s what you feel like when you think of a colour that matters, it’s not one size fits all. And it is so important to introduce colour around us. It expresses who you are, how you feel and your personality. 

Join forces to maximise impact

To make colour have impact just look around you. It could be as simple as teaming the spines on your bookcase by colour - so all the red ones together and all the blue ones together - to create a rainbow of reading material. Or it could be teaming various different glasses of the same colour together to add more impact. You can make a statement out of the every day. Join forces and use colour to tell a story.

People think to sell your home you need to keep it bland and magnolia but how are you going to make your home memorable? You need to bring colour into it and not make it look like everyone else's. An all-white space layered with brights is my favourite approach to decorating. But black can also be a beautiful foil for bright hues, introduce black in a frame or furniture and it can anchor the colour and make the space feel more sophisticated. It also has more punch than white. (Image: Andrew Boyd).

Test the water with bright blooms

There are so many ways to bring a smile to your home and flowers are a great way to dip your toe into a new palette. Put yellow and pink tulips or roses in a vase and together they will bring a fresh, energising burst into a space. Their intensity really works.

If you are feeling unsure, you can test the waters slowly. I like to swap out a pillow or get a pink throw for the bed before I go ahead and wallpaper the whole room. Swap it out gradually and build it up and you are more likely to enjoy the results for longer.

(Image: Andrew Boyd)

Build your colour confidence

You can build your colour confidence by focusing on where your interactions are with colour elsewhere in your life. We make colour-based decisions every day, even before you pick up a magazine, you stop to look at the colour of an advert or the colour of the typography. The best place to start is to make a moodboard of these interactions. Ask yourself, ‘What colours do I regularly turn to?’

From a sock or a blouse to the colour of the packaging on your groceries - which hue is catching your eye? The reason people don’t have confidence is that they aren't conscious of their choices. You use the same principles when buying fashion that you use when decorating, it's just that you buy beauty and fashion more regularly and are more conscious of the colours that appeal to you. By asking people to create a colour moodboard from their life, the story suddenly appears before their eyes.

(Image: Andrew Boyd)

It doesn't have to be forever

Add a colourful cushion or chair and when you tire of it or your taste evolves you can try something different. Experiment with DIY. Create a bedside table of colourful books. Use the left-over paint in the garage and get some jam jars and dip them in the paint to make colourful utensil holders or a makeshift vase. Paint the inside frame of a door a bright neon colour so you just see a flash of colour when you open it.

(Image: Prestigious collection at Fenwick Leicester).

The eye has to travel

I always say to people, 'You aren't going to find any inspiration from a blank room. It’s not going to jump out from a white wall'. You have to take yourself out of your every day routine and discover which colour catches your eye without you even thinking about it. Look everywhere for inspiration from your kitchen cupboards to the flowers on your wedding day.

Take a bright piece of clothing from your wardrobe and hang it on the wall. If you do decide, ‘I love this jumper and I want to paint my bedroom wall exactly the same’ go for it. Valspar paint (at B&Q) will scan it to create the exact match. They offer more than two million different possibilities - more colours than the human eye can see.

 (Image: Harlequin collection at Fenwick Leicester)

And if in doubt, team yellow and blue

One of my favourite colour combinations has to be yellow and blue. I love blues, particularly as they are such versatile colours. Blue can be calming, energising, relaxing anything across the scale, and yellow I find so vibrant and positive - the two combined can be very powerful. (Image: Andrew Boyd)

Bright Bazaar by Will Taylor, £25, published by Jacqui Small. Photography by Andrew Boyd.

Harlequin is available at Fenwick Brent Cross, Canterbury, Colchester, Kingston, Leicester, Newcastle, Tunbridge Wells.

By Claire Brayford