This month, we’re all about the funky interiors. And when we say funky, we don’t mean 70s, or interiors you can dance to (but these are definitely rooms for dancing around in). When we say funky, we mean interiors full of personality, that are unique – that floor you with how innovative they are.
With the arrival of Pinterest, Instagram and online design and decor blogs in the past decade design has exploded and it’s easier than ever to promote and share personal design online. You might ask how it’s possible to have rules for an individual look. Think of these more like ideas or prompts for your own creativity. The most important element to a funky look is of course being yourself.
Add a curveball
You know how some of the best-dressed people have that unexpected element to their look? It’s true of rooms, too. While it’s easy to tick off the trend boxes, a truly stylish, personal home that feels like ‘you’ is much more fun to get.
‘But wait, it sounds like too much work!’ we hear you say. Don’t worry – a sense of originality is easy to cultivate. Just add a curveball. Look at an item you might need for a room – whether that’s a new sofa, coffee table, mirror or dining chair – and try the opposite of what you’d usually go for. So if you’re more subtle and like neutral colours, experiment with a bold orange set of dining chairs. If you like rustic furniture, try adding one modern touch to a room (like a glass-topped table or a mid-century pendant). Most stores offer a return policy, so if you don’t like something, you don’t have to be trapped with it!
Change the scenery
The best way to make a room look funky is by experimenting with the surroundings – especially if you’re on a budget. That Scandi, minimalist or industrial-style furniture can gain a whole new lease of life with a new backdrop, whether it’s patterned wallpaper or painted walls.
Recently these have seen a huge resurgence on social media. Aligned with the pastel trend and now the 70s, jewel-tone trend, coloured walls are no longer about subtle elephant’s breath grey or that much-maligned classic, magnolia. The new coloured walls incorporate bright pop hues, or even literal blocks of colour – say, outlining a single wall, around a fireplace, or in a fireplace. Try echoing the colours in a chair, sofa or lighting piece with a contrast or complementary colour on the wall.
Or try wallpaper or wall stickers – with the jungle trend so big, palm prints and bamboo are huge, especially in unexpected colours (v. funky). Or think psychedelic marble prints, ombre and colour-drenched flowers.
Embrace the unexpected
We’re often told to step out of our comfort zones, and it’s no different when it comes to your home. It’s often easy to say what we like and what we don’t like, but when it comes to interior design it can be a little harder.
Similar to the curveball, try something completely opposite for the room. Think of a rule and break it: try a huge mirror in a small space, super-modern furniture in an old-fashioned building, or lots of eclectic objects clustered on a small space.
Even better, try grouping your furniture in ways you hadn’t expected before; who says you can’t have a living room full of armchairs and stools instead of a sofa? Try a chandelier in the kitchen for unexpected glamour, or a huuuge statement lamp in a small hallway to make it feel important. Who says you can’t have a sofa in the bedroom, especially if that’s where you sit and read the most! Use stools as planters, or add a huge amount of clashing cushions to a sofa – if it looks good, try it out!
The great thing about this approach to decor is that it evolves over time. It’s never really ‘finished’, nor should it be – just keep adding to it with new items and try scheduling time each month for a ‘mix-up’ and go round your house, deliberately testing out new ideas.
Choose a new palette
We will always love the minimal look – white walls, natural floors and all – but recently the interior design world has had a shift towards a more adventurous cluster of colours, inspired by similar shifts towards brights in food, fashion and architecture.
It sounds silly, but the colours of say a macaroon or a plate of fruit can translate just as well to a room as they do a painting. Use paint samples or even a bit of photoshop wizardry to test out ideas – bright colours look good with at least one darker neutral like grey, taupe, or this season’s most on-trend, petrol blue.