Beach chic with splashes of cool

Summer’s evocative design ethos focuses as much on Noosa’s lush hinterland as its stunning aqua backdrop, writes Helen Flanagan

by @helenflanagan on Friday, 11 Dec, 2015

What are the hot trends for a cool summer? Think edgy yet refined and bright open contemporary spaces, a nuance of cool designs with light timber, blue hues, colour pops and water features inspired by the beach and bush.

Soften the mood with subtle hues

It’s all about muddy pastels derived from nature and living matter, delicate shades such as greys, dirty pinks, nudes and natural greens, celebrating the perfection of imperfections, and heavily influenced by the concept of a bespoke creation.

“Calling on nature not just to inspire but to collaborate, flesh tones, lichen, moss and stone influence the subtle hues of the palette, derived from chalky brittle elements rather than soft textures,” says Dulux colour expert, Andrea Lucena-Orr. “For those not bold enough to transform an entire room, try using colours in smaller volumes on accents, trims and accessories or complement colours in soft furnishings.”

Dare to be different? Counter balance soft hues with striking angles and soften paint lines between colours by creating a rough brushed edge for a playful trend detail.

Borrowing from the world of glitz and glamour, dreamy pastels work well in neutral or even masculine settings, and you needn’t bother about giving the space too much of a feminine vibe. If pink seems way too sweet, opt for breezy mint green.

…dreamy pastels work well in neutral or even masculine settings…

Inspired by the beach

Scandi aka Scandinavian and Hamptons, a town north of New York, are synergistic popular design styles.

Scandi with its quiet, understated aesthetic and flair for affordable, functional furniture using natural materials and traditional craftsmanship is back. Think classic 50s and 60s chairs, bold prints and warm timbers. By adding colour to a room, it’s all about moderation, careful planning and curating a look so colour doesn’t dominate.

Hamptons is defined by casual, relaxed beach living but in a classic, very sophisticated way. The look is bright and breezy, lots of natural light with sheer window treatments.

Meld, mix and match the two minimalistic designs with panache, nautical décor items, recycled timbers, cool shutters, and feature plants such as cacti, succulents or bromeliads. Invest in cushions of different sizes and shapes for balance, harmony, texture and fun, also watercolour prints which are all the rage, plus combine favourite colours with touches of blue, turquoise, coral and yellow, for spaces which reflect the cheerfulness of summer and are the epitome of Beach Chic style.

Indoor water features

Gone are the days when waterfalls, green walls, ponds and fountains were solely outdoors. Indoors is an aesthetic addition, proponents ofFeng Shui say water brings balance to an interior dominated by other elements such as stone, metal and glass. Ponder a pond in the foyer, cool waterfall below a contemporary staircase, or a green wall with edible plants.

According to John Scomparin of Outside Noosa, water features can be focal points in a room, cover background noises, and conversely a melodious trickle of water can transfer silent rooms into a soothing environment.

Read more articles by @helenflanagan

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