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Living in a Material World

17/05/2018

When we think about our perfect homes, we dream of colours, layouts and furniture. But materials play an important role too, not just in how homes look but how they feel. The right materials can speak to one another and create warm and tactile environments worth spending time in.

SHIPLAP PANELLING

Invite texture into a room with shiplap panelling, and character and charm will come along too. The material boasts quaint qualities but is not out of place in a modern setting. If you feel a full bedroom wrapped in shiplap could become overwhelming, give yourself just the right amount with a custom headboard.

MARBLE

Thoughts of marble often take us to luxurious bathrooms, but this material is as versatile as it is robust and can complement the visual language in living rooms and bedrooms. An accent wall constructed from marble tiles is a stunning way to sign-off a room with personality. If you’re on a budget, accessories like marble-based lamps or coffee tables are clever ways to showcase this beautiful stone.

LIVE PLANTS

2018 Milan Design week has hinted at the impact of live plants within the home, but materials that live and breathe never truly go in or out of fashion. Not only are they beautiful, they’re great for the air quality of your home. If you don’t feel like building a palette frame to house your greenery, create the impression of a living wall by layering plants over one another and letting them grow freely. This way, you can easily add or swap out plants to suit the seasons, and more importantly, your mood.

USED

Recycling, upcycling and using reclaimed materials has never been more popular, and unlike the other materials in this blog, the only thing they’ll cost you is time. What they lack in ‘shiny new’ smell, they make up for in history. That’s why it’s often better to leave vintage patterns and lettering on display rather painting over. Salvaged wood makes for great cupboards, drawer fronts and shelves – all you have to do it cut them to size and add a little varnish.

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METAL

Just a touch of this glimmering material can make a space infinitely more glamourous. But don’t go overboard, getting the best out of metal relies on striking a balance. Natural brass and gold finishes look particularly striking in darker, moodier rooms and work best when paired with softer, more organic materials. So, if you’re adding metal accents to an elegant drawing room, don’t forget to introduce some warm wooden chairs or velvet cushions to achieve that all important balance.

COPPER

A metal sure enough, copper gets its own entry due its popularity and versatility – it can be introduced into any room of the home with stunning effect. From dangling penny pendant lights, to foiled French mirrors and fancy faucets, the material’s gleaming accents offer endless possibilities for divine design. Copper pipes are currently trending. Cut and mould them to create incredible lighting spectacles, perfect if you don’t mind getting your hands dirty.

MIRRORS

They’ve had a place in our homes for as long as we can remember, but as a decorative material mirrors are extremely versatile. They can extend the end of a room to help it feel larger, and reflect light to make it feel brighter. Mirror tiles are cost effective and can be used as a backsplash to instantly add luxury to kitchens or bathrooms. Alternatively, a gallery wall featuring lots of mixed and matched mirrors in different frames can add a focal point to your home. The frames can complement each other or even be painted to match the rest of your home.

CONCRETE

Grey isn’t the most inspiring colour, and you could be forgiven for believing that concrete is a ‘cold’ material. But when wielded well, this material can be a stylish addition to any home. Complement earthy wooden tones in your kitchen with a polished concrete floor or worktop, or add effortless charm to bedrooms with a concrete wall backdrop. Concrete is both humble and show-stopping, no wonder it’s trending in both residential and commercial design.

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