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Springs hottest hues

By Waverly Atkinson

pring is here, which means it’s time to cast off the dark hues of winter and freshen up interiors with cheerful brights and softer colours. We’ve asked three colour experts to reveal which shades are trending for spring, and how you can use them to best effect in your home.

Spring is a time to throw back the curtains, freshen up and declutter. It’s an opportunity to bring new life and energy into your home and one of the best ways to do this is with colour.

“At the change of seasons, we often clean out our wardrobe, putting the dull winter things away and bringing in fresh new pieces for the warmer weather,” says Judith Briggs, principal colour designer at Colour Consultants Australia. “You can apply that analogy to your interiors: go through each room, putting away heaters and heavy blankets. Bring the outdoors in with flowers, plants and bright, zesty colours.”

Creating a spring-inspired colour palette in your home isn’t necessarily about repainting. “When you paint a room, the colour should be beautiful no matter what time of the year it is,” says Melanie Stevenson, marketing manager at Porter’s Paints. A better way to acknowledge the changing seasons, she says, is to dress your interiors with accessories: choose a statement lamp or pendant light in a vibrant, on-trend shade, hang an oversized, colourful artwork on the wall, or simply introduce colour with flowering plants and greenery.

According to Jessica Viscarde, interior designer and director of The Eclectic Creative Studio, this season designers are drawing inspiration from the colours of nature: “You can choose to refresh your interior for spring in small ways, such as changing up your scatter cushions to deep emerald-green velvets and fibrous, textural woven lumbar cushions.”

Gorgeous greens
The 2017 Pantone Colour of the Year is ‘Greenery’ – a fresh, yellow-based green, the colour of budding leaves – and interiors across the country have never been so verdant. “We’re seeing every kind of green, from chameleon, olive, forest… I think you could pick any green and you’d be on-trend at the moment,” says Briggs.

How to style it: A garden-fresh serving of greens is the perfect antidote to the winter doldrums: introduce it with opulently textured fabrics, botanical prints, and by filling your home with plants. A strategically placed mirror can also help up the green factor by reflecting the colours of your garden into your interior.

“Introduce deeper tones such as emerald greens and deeper blues through smaller statement pieces such as an ottoman, cushion or smaller art piece, then blend with natural styling elements such as indoor greenery, natural stone, raw timbers and native flowers such as wattle or eucalyptus,” says Viscarde.

Tip: Buying a new floor rug is a great way to give your living room a seasonal update. Viscarde advises investing in the largest rug you can afford for the space, and making sure that it runs beneath the sofa, thus avoiding what she calls “the dreaded floating postage-stamp effect”.

Pretty in pink
Pink has been one of the most directional colours of the past couple of years, with everything from barely there blushing whites to deep crimsons brightening up our walls and homewares. Whether you go for pale and pretty, vibrant and playful, or a dusky, romantic shade, pink’s rosy charm makes it a winning choice for spring decor.

Pink pairs well with a surprising number of colours: teaming it with burnt orange will deliver a warm, earthier feel, or put a blue-based (cool-toned) pink with clear greens and sky-blue to evoke the crystalline beauty of a sunny spring day.

How to style it: Pink is a high-energy colour, and just a touch will bring a space to life. Introduce pink on cushions and other textiles, combining pastels with bolder shades for added depth and dimension.

Sweet florals and luscious decorative bird prints are irresistible. Or simply fill your vases with masses of delicious pink flowers.

Dive into blue
Stevenson says blues – particularly deeper shades – are making a huge comeback. Navy blue, while beautiful for winter, has a depth and coolness that’s also perfect for spring. Clear, gem-inspired blues such as lapis lazuli and turquoise are both elegant and invigorating.

How to style it: Blue teams well with corals and mustards. For a fresh, contemporary take, Viscarde suggests pairing blues with burnt orange and terracotta tones and adding in natural fibres and textures for contrast. The look is played to perfection in this Melbourne living room, where Viscarde has dressed up a blue sofa with a splash of burnt orange. A hint of yellow ties the black-and-white cushion into the palette, while the fur rug adds texture and cosiness.

Tip: Updating your tableware – crockery, glasses and napery – is a quick, easy and affordable way to inject on-trend spring shades into your decor, says Briggs. “It’s nice to have some fresh and bright new things on the table that go with the lighter food we eat in the warmer months.”

Golden daze
From zesty citrus to mellow mustards, yellow is the colour of optimism and sunshine, according to Briggs. It’s the colour of daffodils, daisies, and pillowy-soft blooms of wattle. A splash of this cheery shade will light up your life as no other colour can.

How to style it: Yellow delivers an instant spring zing – and like pink, a little goes a long way. It teams beautifully with muted greys: pull in some yellow to add a splash of irreverence to a monochrome scheme, while retaining a sophisticated edge.

Tip: Some strategy is required when using bold colour accents in a room. “The mistake a lot of people make is to just bring in one colourful item,” says Briggs. “This can create a jarring effect because it just jumps out at you. It’s better to repeat that colour in two or three other places – this will integrate it more, allowing the eye to move around the room and take in all the decor.”

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