Interior Design: What’s the latest thing?
How big an influence should fashion be on the look and feel of your home? Stephen Dick of Residence Interior Design explains that there are other, more fundamental things to consider first.
We’re often asked about trends and fashion in interiors. What’s the latest thing? This season’s must-have look?
Fashion influences all of us of course, but the nature of our interior design projects for private clients is that they’re not making transient choices – something that’s great for now but maybe not so tomorrow.
I believe the environment in which we live can have a profound effect on how we live and enjoy our lives. Our homes are important to us, so we often make significant investments in them too. We need the results to have enduring appeal, and to feel good for many years to come.
It’s still your style
We always design for individual clients rather than having a particular look that our studio produces, or a particular look for this year. Our clients are all so incredibly different, but their unique likes and dislikes aren’t the only things we consider when designing our interiors.
It’s important to go beyond the room that’s on your mind, or just the ‘interior’ of your home. We always think about the individual property too, and even the wider context in which our clients live.
We’re based in Hampshire just outside Winchester, and we work on properties between here and central London. It’s not just as simple as ‘Town’ or ‘Country’ though, or period versus contemporary.
Styles, finishes and fittings can be brought together and combined to create a scheme that’s feels just right for you and your home. It’s still your style, but it might be tailored for your current property or location. If the design is as right for your home as much as it’s right for you then it should have lasting appeal.
Successful design is about helping you to understand your own style, and designing in a way that’s in keeping with your property and sympathetic to where you live.
Let me explain and give you a few examples which I hope will help if you’re thinking about your own home.
Consider your property
Your home itself – the property in which you live or that you’re building – is the envelope which contains the interior. The architecture of the building will influence the design inside – its layout and arrangement as well as its style.
A contemporary new-build property will feel quite different to a period property, and the design of the interior should consider this. It can still contrast with the property, but it should somehow reference it if the interior is to feel like it belongs in the property.
Think about where you live
The atmosphere of our surroundings and the context of our location affects how we live, and that’s something that can influence the inside of our homes too. Some aspects of your home’s location can have a direct bearing on the interior, such as a waterfront or riverside position.
This can affect how the property is used and how it’s arranged, its light and its views. Make the most of the location and what it can offer when it’s experienced from the inside.
Here are some examples from our portfolio of Interior Design Projects in Hampshire, plus I’ve summarised four of our projects below.
A new build in a classical style
We designed the interiors for this new-build property in Winchester. Although new, the property was designed in a classical style. Here in the master bathroom you can see a sleek, contemporary design befitting a new, luxury property. Yet in keeping with the classical style of the property, we used stone, walnut timber and marble-effect porcelain tiles so that it feels in keeping with the overall house.
A waterfront house refurbishment
For the sitting room of this waterfront home in Hampshire, we considered the views as well as the natural light. The rooms were planned to make the most of the view across Hamble water, and the floor finishes chosen to be practical, as well as to limit glare when the sun is at its brightest.
This property was built recently but it is situated in an historic Hampshire waterfront location. So, we used beautiful contemporary fabrics and subtle references to the water in the scheme, combining it with traditional upholstery and wallcoverings.
A country house in a Hampshire village
Here, the combination of a country property in a small village in Hampshire suited a more traditional style. The owner has contemporary tastes though, and this is reflected in the colour scheme and the details. The cabinetry is painted in a modern olive grey, and accented with the warmth of copper handles. Amid the period cabinetry, the rest of the room is simple and pared back.
A unique property
And if you have a unique property? Then design something totally unique for it! In this studio in Hampshire, a Japanese-style deep-soaking tub gives bathers views down the River Meon. To maintain a simple feel which never detracts from the view, we designed a custom mixer tap from simple fittings, and clad the space with materials found elsewhere in the property.
These examples show how interiors can be about far more than just your own style. The influence of your property and being sympathetic to where you live should influence your interiors too. It all needs to be right for you, and look and feel right with your surroundings.
For us, bringing these together: our clients’ needs and desires, their properties, and the wider context – are the ‘must haves’. Start from here and your interior will never go out of fashion.
If you’d like help to make your home right for you, we’d love to hear from you.
Contact – Stephen Dick – 07976 723 425
The Old Stables, West Meon, Hampshire, GU32 1LU
[Photography credit – Adrian Lyon]