A welcome burst of sunshine this week reminded us that spring has arrived. It also shed light on grimy windows and drab interiors in need of brightening up.
For those intending to redecorate and refurnish, this season brings plenty of inspiration. Pastels are fashionable, especially lilac, soft peaches and pinks, which look perfect with a touch of on-trend yellow.
If you are in the market for a new sofa, check out Sofas & Stuff, which allows you to customise your sofas and chairs in various fabrics so you could have a mix of floral and plain coverings. It has a spring sale on at the moment with 10 per cent off all sofas and chairs.
Sofas & Stuff has stores at Redbrick Mill, Batley, and at Bishop Thornton, near Harrogate.
For paint colours look at Little Greene’s library, www.littlegreene.com. Pink slip and the soft lilac Whisper are soul mates and look good when teamed with a little Lemon Mivvi.
If you prefer something more subtle, Yorkshire-based designer maker Hannah Nunn has a new wallpaper design named Tiny Treasures. It comes in two colourways – cream with brushed gold motifs and pops of dusky blue or grey and silver. She calls the pattern a “curious collection of small and beautiful gifts from nature. Things that might come home in your pocket after a walk in the woods.” The print includes catkins, conkers, berries, leaves, feathers, lichens and seed pods. It costs £69 per roll from www.hannahnunn.co.uk
For curtains and blinds, Designers Guild specialise in fabulous floral fabrics in bright colours.The new Artemisia Acacia print is beautiful and costs £84 per metre. For a wide choice, check out Yorkshire’s independent interiors and fabric stores for a comprehensive range of material. They will also give you excellent advice, which you won’t get online.
If you just want an inexpensive spring refresh then there are plenty of accessories to choose from. Cushions and throws are a cheap and effective way to ring the changes. My favourite cushion so far this year is the blue tits and forget-me-nots design, £39.95, from Annabel James. For something different and ethical, check out independent makers on Etsy.com, Folksy.com and Notonthehighstreet.com
As Easter is on the horizon, you’ll find plenty of floral wreaths for sale. John Lewis has an Easter wreath for £25.
Plants and fresh flowers make a world of difference to a home. You don’t have to pay a fortune. You can get cheerful daffodils for £1 a bunch and they are guaranteed to brighten a room and your mood.
* Many of us need help and inspiration when it comes to our gardens and patios. The Royal Horticultural Society’s Harlow Carr Gardens in Harrogate are a Yorkshire treasure and are a joy to walk round. Newby Hall gardens, near Ripon, are also a treat and there is a small garden centre. Independent garden centres will always offer helpful advice.
Harlow Carr also has horticulture and garden design workshops and courses, www.rhs.org.uk/gardens/harlow-carr.