Bringing The Autumn Inside with Jennifer Campbell
As the summer starts to fade away and autumn begins to make itself known, you might start to think about changing your home’s interior. Like an ‘autumn clean’ you can de-clutter and rearrange, ensuring that your home is as cosy and comfortable as possible for the colder months to come. This month, insideKENT spoke to Bidborough-based interior designer, Jennifer Campbell, about her thoughts on the upcoming trends for interior design this autumn.
What colours are on trend this season?
Navy Blue is very prominent this year from dark blue walls to velvet sofas. Currently it’s bang on trend for autumn/winter but it’s a very elegant, timeless colour. Brooding violet is the colour of the year and makes its way into autumn colour schemes through rich purples, plums and burgundy. Rust and maple shades are warming things up. Earthy shades of clay, terracotta and ochre feature on printed cushions and rugs. Global influences inspire a number of high street interiors collections this season. Metallic accents are still very popular but there is a move from copper to brass. Moody, dark wallpaper is at the forefront of design this autumn/winter.
How can you bring the outside in during autumn?
Think about bringing nature indoors. Add autumn foliage from your garden to a vase of bought flowers. This can be twigs, leaves, cones, berries. Stack some large red apples in a pretty bowl in the centre of a dining table. Scented candles always add atmosphere and then look to the catwalk for influences. Chunky knits can transfer to throws for your sofa, armchair or bed and maybe a sheepskin rug for the floor. You can buy local quality products from www.romneymarshwools.co.uk.
Your local garden centre will sell indoor autumn/winter plants; plant in pretty pots (nice pots are a good spend) and smarten your kitchen window ledge or coffee table for months to come.
How should you use autumn colour?
A fresh coat of paint can work wonders for any room but it has to be a colour that works for you through the seasons and in different lights. A quick colour fix would be investing in some new cushions in autumn shades for the sofa – try M&S or Habitat for some inexpensive options. A more luxurious change would be to splash out on some new bed linen – try Zara Home for some lovely patterns, florals or textured linen. If you want to have some fun re-decorating then pick a small, quirky room like the downstairs toilet and choose some large, moody floral wallpaper.
How did you get into interiors?
When I look back I realise that this is what I was meant to do! As a little girl I was constantly re-arranging the furniture in my bedroom or changing the posters on my walls. My parents were always house hunting so I also did a lot of house viewing in my younger years. I trained in interior design when my children were young. I wanted to work more flexibly and I loved property, interiors and art. Through my training and now my work, my love of art has expanded to a love of fabric and lighting too. I have a keen eye for colour and I am genuinely passionate about what I do.
What is it about nature that appeals to you in my work?
I am happy outdoors in nature. I grew up in Scotland and I feel very grounded by hills and lochs. I have always travelled and spent time living in California. My parents would take us on holiday to Cornwall, Norfolk and France. I love the pretty Kent countryside dotted with oast houses and vines. I’m also a huge fan of the coast. I bought a puppy last year so I’m now enjoying walks through the Weald every day. The fresh air and changing skies clear my head and I’m far more creative when I get back to the office. Nature is calming for me and that influences my interiors. I often use neutral wall colours and then add art where I can. I also use a lot of fresh flowers when I’m styling homes. I like to find unusual containers to fill with flowers from ceramic jugs to old coffee pots. I try to find something lovely to bring back from every holiday I go on. This is how my home evolves.
How have you used these current autumn trends?
I tend to use neutral background colours and then add colour through art and accessories but recently I have embraced dark blue. I used Farrow & Balls’ Stiffkey Blue for an entire living room and on another project I used Little Greenes’ Juniper Ash for a feature wall and both look absolutely stunning! Both are great colours for hanging art against. It really pops!
I’m a cushion addict so I’m always on the lookout for new cushions. You can easily refresh a room by changing the throws, cushions and rugs. I recently renovated my house and took lots of my old cushions to a car boot sale so that I could start again. I bought some inexpensive geometric prints from House of Fraser and West Elm.