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New collection: Return to The Islands

We’re so proud of our newest collection – here’s a little insight into a few more of our designs and what inspired them…

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As we mentioned in our previous blog, The Islands was inspired by the excitement and promise of discovering a secluded beachy haven or an exotic hideaway.

We explored the organic forms of underwater flora and fauna – playing with scale, colour and line. We also ventured into the kinds of motif that might be found on fabrics or ceramics in far-flung places, pulling these through into textures, illustrations and abstract patterns.

As with most of our designs, we wanted to capture a mood – whether that was the relaxation and contentment one experiences in a peaceful little idyll, the serenity of diving into an underwater world, or the intrigue of exploring an exotic destination.

With a bold but accessible colour palette throughout, our designs work equally well in homes as they do in hotels, restaurants, boutiques and bars.

Conversational designs

We’ve previously introduced the outsized shells of Martinique, the botanical-style illustrations of Bahama, and the Eastern influences of Pearl River, but here are four more of our conversational wallpaper designs:

Kitts

Like Bahama, Kitts was inspired by an archive of detailed linear prints of fish, shells and jellyfish which we brought alive with a vivid palette of turquoise, magenta, coral and jade. The fish weave in and out of stylised strands of bubbles and we added subtle zig-zag lines to suggest the gentle mesmeric motion of being underwater.

Kitts is available with four different background shades which change the way the eye reads the overall design:

• Moody dark blue, petrol tones make the colours pop – we see this adding drama and sophistication to a space
• Neutral cream and taupe grounds make the overall design a little softer and lighter
• The aqua background is at once calm and fresh, and is tonally harmonious with the fish

We can picture this statement-making design working equally well in residential and commercial spaces.

Faroe

Having found a version of this endearing grey and white Sei whale in a portfolio of antique prints, we were inspired to create a wallcovering where he was the main feature. We added him into a contrasting background of stylised foam-crested waves so that the overall effect resembled the retro art of decoupage.

Available on a pale blue, dark blue, pink, or sepia background, Faroe would work wonderfully in a child’s bedroom or family room but equally well in a living room, bathroom, or hallway – we could also see it being a superb addition to a quirky tea shop or children’s boutique.

Aruba

In part inspired by Dali’s ‘Lobster Telephone’, Aruba’s whimsical crustaceans are fun and cheerful and lend a playful mood to a room. The repeat lobster motif mimics a screenprint, with details and accents picked out in contrasting colours.

Aruba is available in three colourways – the first two options were inspired by the bright array of colours found on traditional beach huts with near-neon highlights – either on a black or cream linen-textured background. Alternatively, we offer a more subdued palette of softer neutrals with pastel accents which creates a bright and breezy effect on the wall.

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Montserrat

Delicate swaying seaweed fronds and corals reveal dainty seahorses and sea urchins in our Montserrat wallpaper design. Conjuring up serene feelings, this is a really charming little print that adds visual interest but without dominating a scheme.

We offer this linear design in four colourways:

• Black and white – neutral taupes and khakis
• Multi – mustard, teal and aubergine on taupe
• Blue – jade, turquoise, teal and inky navy
• Coral red – deep orange-red and magenta

Subtle texture and geometrics

We’ve also created some designs that were inspired by woven textiles and rustic materials from exotic shores:

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Lucia

We created this semi-plain design on a pearlescent ground with thoughts of the sun illuminating the raw silk drapes on a cabana, or beating against the raffia walls of an island hut.

Lucia is very versatile and pairs beautifully with the ornate lines of Bahama – or it can be used alone to add subtle texture to walls – it is available in cream and black/gold, as well as neutral and ocean-inspired hues.

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Nevis

Inspired by the abstract beauty and simplicity of horizontal brushmarks, we created the striking Nevis wallpaper design.

When printed in white and soft grey tones, Nevis echoes the cool hues found in airy and elegant Cape Cod beach houses. Translated into steely tones and the design is more intensely masculine with an industrial quality. The addition of spicier ginger tones would add a rustic yet exotic feel to an interior.

This wallpaper is very versatile and we can see it being used in a variety of locations to inject a sophisticated and contemporary look to a residential or commercial space.

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Butia

We created this contemporary geometric design with a starting point of opulent woven silk textiles and this was enhanced by the use of a pearlescent ground for a soft shimmer on the wall.

Colour is always a prominent part of our design process and Butia was no exception. Available in four subtle but distinctive tonal colourways, we wanted the palette to be really mellow and muted – look up close and you’ll see that the thread-like gradations of (sometimes unexpected) colours act to subdue the overall appearance of the design.

Because we’re passionate about our planet…

The beauty to be found in nature underpins much of this collection, and is a constant source of inspiration for us. With an ongoing commitment to environmental sustainability, we have partnered with the One Tree Planted initiative. This means that, for every roll of wallpaper sold from The Islands collection (and all future collections), we contribute to one tree being planted.

 

Discover The Islands for yourself…

We’ve created The Islands style box – a sleek pack that includes A4 samples of all references from the collection. To order a style box please contact us by emailing enquiries@elizabethockford.com

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Interior inspiration: 5 ways to use wallpaper in your home

Decorative wallpaper has been used for centuries but now – more than ever before – there’s a design to suit your interior project and personal style.

Put down that paintbrush! Here’s five ways to add wallpaper to your home, along with our advice on selecting the best style for you:

1 Create a talking point

Conversational wallpaper can be used to make a statement throughout the home. Bold designs or colours that catch the eye will create a focal point, injecting a sense of personality and interest into your room.

Here’s just a few examples of conversational designs from our newest collection – The Islands – which illustrate this:

2 Show off your unique style

With so many styles of wallpaper available, it’s never been easier to express your personality through your choice of wallcovering.

Wallpaper is a highly effective way of personalising the design of your interior, as there are so many different options. Whether you’re looking for something subtly neutral, highly patterned, textured, geometric or floral – wallpaper provides myriads of ways to make your space as individual as you are.

3 Consider your space and your taste

When it comes to rooms that lack natural light or are smaller in size, you might hear traditional design ‘rules’ about the depth of hue or size of pattern. But we think rules are made to be broken!

Fresh, light colour schemes can be great in a darker room, but if that’s just not your taste then deep, dramatic tones can create really inviting interiors, too.

And smaller spaces – such as a powder room, shower room or under-the-stairs nook – can really benefit from the impact of wallpaper with a large bold print if that’s your style.

4 Enhance a feature

Feature walls have long been a popular way to introduce an accent of bold colour or pattern to a room.

And there are no boundaries when it comes to using wallpaper – although ‘wall’ is in the name, it can be used creatively in other places. Old cupboards in need of an update or does your ceiling need to be refreshed? What’s to stop you from using wallpaper?

5 Create a mood

Exploring a mood is often a key starting point for our creative process and it might also help you to think about what you’re trying to achieve in your home.

Colour and pattern can evoke a range of feelings – from calm and relaxed, to fun and quirky, or intense and dramatic.

And finally…

Wallpaper can pull together a look by injecting a blend of colour, texture and pattern into your room.

To narrow down which style of wallpaper might work for you and your home, we recommend taking a look on Pinterest or Instagram, or checking out interiors magazines or websites for inspiration.

Your choice of wallpaper is an expression of your creativity and personal aesthetic –and it provides a layer of style that is unrivalled.

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New collection: The Islands

Introducing our newest collection…

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We drew inspiration for The Islands Collection from the fantasy of escaping to beautiful faraway destinations. We wanted our designs to breathe fresh air into interiors, from homes to hotels, restaurants, boutiques and bars.

From that starting point, we then explored a few different angles – playing with bold organic forms as well as fragments of illustration and then adding in some more geometric motifs.

Some of our designs are quite minimal – which makes them feel modern and sophisticated – whereas others are more intricate – they’re more conversational or whimsical, even. However, as with all our designs, our passion for colour is an ever-present characteristic that runs through the entire collection. We also harnessed texture to add emphasis to our designs, with subtle raffia finishes and pearlescent accents that mimic shells.

Here’s a little insight into three of the more conversational designs from The Islands collection…

Martinique

This design features outsized seashells, delicately drawn in monochrome tones, on a textured ground that’s reminiscent of grass paper. We opted for a softly pearlescent ground that echoes the shimmer of the interior of a shell.

Martinique is available in a classic nautical blue and white, as well as gold, coral, sea green, and contemporary charcoal tones.

Bahama

Inspired by botanical illustrations from our archive, Bahama features intricate shells, flowers, corals, butterflies and exotic birds. Background colours range from rich deep wine and petrol blue to subtle natural cream and stone.

Full of detail and vibrant colour, Bahama has the opulent quality of a 1980s Versace print and it makes a real style statement.

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Pearl River

Another of our statement designs, Pearl River features large circles that each hold a fragment of an Eastern scene or a motif inspired by oriental drawings or ceramics. We added in a strong linen-effect ground in either cream, black or emerald to change up the mood.

Our pledge to the environment

We’re committed to environmental sustainability and improving our company’s green credentials. As part of our ongoing responsibility to the environment, all products from The Islands collection are part of collaboration with the One Tree Planted initiative.
 We’ve pledged that, for every roll of wallpaper purchased from The Islands collection (and all future collections), Elizabeth Ockford Ltd will contribute to one tree being planted.



The Islands style box

We thought about how we could create an innovative, cost-effective and compact tool that would give professional interior designers access to the entire new collection, so we created The Islands style box.

The pack includes an A4 sample of all references in the new collection – you can order a style box by emailing enquiries@elizabethockford.com

The moment of truth...

Debuting a new collection is an exciting time but it can also be a little daunting. So far, we’ve been delighted with how well The Islands has been received.

In the midst of February’s stormy weather, we made the long journey from Sussex to Polmont, taking our new collection to the Scottish Interiors Showcase.

The feedback we had from fellow designers, interior designers and retailers was extremely positive and we’ve had many requests for our style box and other enquiries since we returned from Scotland.

Stay tuned… we’ll be discussing more of The Islands collection in a future blog article, coming very soon.

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Interior inspiration: 5 ways to use THAT colour blue that will be in interiors everywhere in 2020

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Back in December 2019, Pantone announced that its colour of the year for 2020 would be 19-4052 Classic Blue. But what does that mean for the average person, who wants to decorate their home in the latest trend?
I have always loved having a blue bedroom- and have painted at least three bedrooms in different houses in a Sanderson Boy Blue – to me it is the perfect shade of English Sky blue. Each of those bedrooms always felt full of celestial light; calm and relaxing.

But this shade as advocated by Pantone is much stronger and bolder- so how can it be used?

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1 Don’t be afraid of the Dark

Strong colour does not necessarily mean a dark and unwelcoming interior. Using rich jewel tones adds depth to a room, and saturated colour tones change with the time of day and the daylight - making a room feel mysterious and entrancing. It gives an Interior Designer an opportunity to add depth of character to a space.

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2 You don’t have to use only one colour in an Interior scheme.

So, yes, this strong blue is the ‘fashion’. But what if you just can’t face having an entire room or even a whole wall, in it? Then choose a wallpaper design where the strong blue is well balanced with a neutral ground. You are then free to add perhaps a gorgeous dark blue velvet sofa, to bring out the colour, but your room still can breathe.

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3 Re-interpret the classic Blue and White colour scheme

Use a design that is effectively navy and white- always a smart colour combo. This nautical design, Martinique, has over-sized shells in clear blue on an off-white ground- and will reflect light around a room, whatever the weather.

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4 Go for glamour and interest

Choose a design that has the strong blue as its main colour but also contains many other jewel tones. Also, a pearlescent ground on a wallpaper will help darker colours to reflect light and will lift the wallcovering’s appearance.
You could pick out many different colours from this design, for instance, to accessorise your room.

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5 A smile goes a long way

I love designs that make me smile, and also seem to have a story to them. Just because dark blue has a serious mood to it, you can still find characterful designs that use it. I bet you will find this design is a talking point in any interior.

I am hopeful that at the start of the new 20’s, we will see a much greater use of characterful design and rich, jewel like colours. Embrace them- as a healthy, happy antidote to the grey years of the noughties.
The trend for sophisticated neutrals has gone on too long- Long Live Colour!!!

Visit my Instagram @elizabethockford to follow my designs and colour inspiration.

 

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