Revamp your living room with daring prints, deep blues and luxurious finishes
It’s time to stop playing it safe—this year’s trends embrace bold prints, deep blues, and earthy materials such as cork and terracotta. Incorporate them into your living space in these clever and luxurious ways
1 LOOK: JUNGALOW CHIC
Los Angeles-based designer and author of bestseller The New Bohemians: Cool and Collected Homes, Justina Blakeney’s design studio and blog The Jungalow has spawned a trend of the same name that’s all about decorating with wild colours, patterns and plants. “Jungalow is a fresh take on what we traditionally think of as a bohemian lifestyle,” says Blakeney. “So many creatives work from home these days, and there’s increasingly less of a distinction between work and play— those blurred lines have allowed people freedom to use their homes in new and exciting ways.” Her suggestion for the timid is to start with a colourful wallpaper and a few potted plants. In Singapore, Bode carries a stunning selection of jungalow-patterned home textiles and furniture from brands such as Timorous Beasties, Liberty Art Fabrics and Spring Rhythm. “Jungalow is a melding of several trends that have been increasingly popular over the past few years. These include tribal, botanical and kinfolk, which use fabrics made from natural fibres such as textured linens and colours dyed using artisanal techniques—plenty of greens, blues and earth colours,” says Bode’s owner, Jenny Lewis, who thinks that the trend might be a reaction against the controlled and formal spaces that most city-dwellers live in. “It allows one to be more creative when decorating. The foliage, botanical and forest motifs of jungalow are ideal for Singapore, as they bring the outdoors in.”
“THE FOLIAGE, BOTANICAL AND FOREST MOTIFS OF JUNGALOW ARE IDEAL FOR SINGAPORE, AS THEY BRING THE OUTDOORS IN”
2 MATERIALS: CORK AND TERRACOTTA
Sustainability is a growing priority among designers and homeowners, so it’s no surprise that eco-friendly materials such as terracotta and cork are making their way into living rooms in new, sophisticated ways. Terracotta gets a modern makeover by lighting designers such as Pott, which combines traditional pottery techniques with contemporary lighting arrangements for its popular Sponge and Flame pendant lamp collections. “People tend to use terracotta in earth-tone decor, but I’ve seen some really impressive combinations of our terracotta lamps with cold colour interiors and industrial themes,” says Pott’s designer, Miguel Ángel Garcia Belmonte. “When using terracotta, don’t be afraid of contrast—the results can be very interesting.” Portuguese cork flooring manufacturer Wicanders’ range of cork floor and wall coverings are a great alternative to parquet or tiled flooring. “Cork flooring reduces noise from walking by up to 53 per cent compared to other materials,” says the brand’s marketing director, Pedro Pinho. “Its low conductivity assures optimal room temperature at any time, translating into energy savings. It provides greater walking comfort, and thanks to its inner flexibility, also reduces body tension, offers superior impact resistance, and has a longer life span.” Also innovating with cork is Portugalbased French designer Toni Grilo, whose Cut and Ypsilon collections of avant-garde furniture designed for Portuguese brand Blackcork are great conversation pieces in any living room. “Cork is a charismatic and versatile material,” says Grilo. “It is environmentally friendly, improves acoustic quality, and is available in a multitude of finishes and colour variations.” She suggests using cork in combination with wood, stone or metal to bring out its natural warmth.
“WHEN USING TERRACOTTA, DON’T BE AFRAID OF CONTRAST—THE RESULTS CAN BE VERY INTERESTING”
3 COLOURS: MIDNIGHT AND DUSKY BLUES
The spotlight is now on dusky and midnight blues, which are calming colours that balance our hectic lives. Norwegian paint manufacturer Jotun offers the youthful Retro blue that, when combined with warmer colours such as orange, can really energise your living room. There’s also the slightly muted Evening Light, which works well with relaxed, earthy materials such as cork and terracotta, and the modern and sophisticated St Pauls Blue, which is ideal for interiors that incorporate finishes such as velvet or brass. Jotun’s special-effect paints, such as its Sophisticated Blue, glazed over with Majestic Design Pearl, can soften the ambience of your living room. “Glazed over with the pearlescent effect, this mysterious dark shade evokes the calming feel of morning mist,” says Kimmy Lim, regional colour manager of Jotun Southeast Asia Pacific. “It’s great for feature walls, and for adding texture and depth to a room. Psychologically, blue is a calming and relaxing colour. It’s also a colour that encourages productivity.”
4 FINISHES: HINTS OF LUXURY
This summer, luxury whispers softly through finishes such as velvet, brass, marble, marquetry and lacquer, as seen in UK sofa brand Loaf ’s voluptuous velvet sofas and armchairs, which are available in a variety of lively colours. You could also introduce a touch of luxury with complex pieces that tell a story. “Some finishes, like marquetry, may require several months to complete,” says Marianne Fabre, co-founder of Singapore design studio Akar de Nissim. “Nowadays, people are more appreciative of objects with stories behind them.” The brand’s Art Deco-inspired Facet floor lamp and its Iris coffee table are perfect examples of these sorts of pieces. “Use luxury finishes sparingly,” says Fabre. “Brass accents will give a stronger personality to interiors. A unique slab of rare marble could be the focal point in a living room. A touch of luxury in one place is more effective than using it in large quantities in too many areas.”
THIS PAGE Bode’s selection of home textiles includes ethnicinspired details such paisley and ikat from brands including Spring Rhythm and Liberty Art Fabrics OPPOSITE PAGE A jungalowstyle print from Timorous Beasties, also carried by Bode
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP Pott’s terracotta pendant lamps; Wicanders has a range of cork floor and wall coverings; Toni Grilo’s eco-friendly furniture which pairs cork with wood and glass
LEFT TO RIGHT A wall clad in the youthful Retro blue by Jotun; Akar de Nissim’s Iris coffee table is made with marble and buffalo horn marquetry, and paired with either a Tahiti shell or lacquer finish; Loaf’s velvet curved sofa range comes in lively...