Back in the embryonic days of the blog (all of two years ago!) pale pink was one of the first posts I wrote about. It’s not quite bordering on a sugar plum fairy complex … but I am a bit of a pink fan – particularly when it comes to decorating. I returned to the colour again last summer with a post on Indigo and Blush so you can imagine my excitement at recent London Design Week shows to see more interior and fashion designs emerging for 2018.
Why do we love pink so much?
As Magdalen Jebb – creative director of Lewis & Wood – pointed out when she kindly talked me through the exquisite newly launched Voysey collection, “Pink is the colour of love, compassion and nurturing and it makes us feel good.”
It was a chance discovery of a C.F.A. Voysey design in the back of an exhibition book to last year’s Josef Frank exhibition in London that caught Magdalen’s eye. This then led to the discovery in the V&A archive of some touchingly tender designs (particularly as photographs of Voysey give the impression of quite an austere man!)
In interior decorating, pale pink paint acts in much the same way as blusher does in beauty. It works as a ‘highlighter’ enhancing features of the room, showing off furniture and paintings to their best effect. Pale pink is a favourite in many a castle (Scottish), glamorous drawing room (Hamish Bowles, Rita Konig) or tea room (such as Sketch, in London) but it definitely works in small unadorned places too.
It is true, there are other paint shades that would also do the same thing such as mineral greys, turquoise, bookroom reds, forest greens and indigos etc but the effect of pale pink is less contrasty and frankly just a little bit more up and – a little bit more glam.
Paint also happens to be what the pale pink ‘look’ is all about and happily, it is a very cheap way to completely alter the look of a room. The chalkier the finish, the better it will look so if you can, invest in a shade such as Jonquil (see below) or pinkier Laylock by Edward Bulmer or otherwise opt for something like Dulux’s Party Surprise 5.
All the trimmings
For top notch trimmings you could look no further than a large selection of colours and designs from Colefax & Fowler. Alternatively, grosgrain (sometimes known as petersham) ribbon is a smart and affordable option from places like Hobbycraft and John Lewis.
Blooms in the pink
There were several exciting showstopper designs launched by Designers Guild during London Design Week and one in particular was their collaboration collection with U.S. designer John Derian. This consists of wallpapers, fabrics and accessories including his signature decoupage glass dishes.
Inchyra Design’s Trefoil linen fabric design from their Balazuc collection launched last Summer is a perfect example of elegant Scottish style. So that you can see it (very approximately) in scale to the John Derian/Designers Guild rose design I have photographed a single motif. Please click the Inchyra link above to see the full pattern repeat, it is a real beauty.
Swans is a new wallpaper design from Hibou who do some really fun designs for children’s rooms (which I have used in the past for clients such as Mothercare). Although there is a charming childlike naivity to this design, it would work equally as well in a loo or dressing room.
Blush crush in the kitchen
Just one piece of cabinetry such as this larder from Neptune Home’s Suffolk range painted in pale pink looks fab in a neutral scheme whether it be in a kitchen, a bedroom or living room. You can also achieve this look by using Annie Sloan’s chalk paints which are perfect for upcycling projects on vintage furniture – try Antoinette.
Pinky and perky
Loving the transfer of Bert & May’s Blake border design from fabric to tile (left) and the expanding pink tile repertoire.
(Left: Blake Border tile, £7.06 each; Right: Pink Pradena, £5 each/£125 sq m, Bert & May).
Thank you so much for reading! If you need any help with any photographic or personal styling projects, please don’t hesitate to get in contact. In the meantime, to receive email alerts for future blog posts, please press the large blue ‘Follow’ button either at the beginning or end of a post! With many thanks, Charis x