We adapt our wardrobes to suit the changing seasons, and our homes should follow suit.
Gabrielle Fagan reveals the key decor trends to ensure rooms are stylishly dressed for autumn.
Autumn doesn’t just bring a change in temperature, it brings a change of mood for homes.
Chilly winds encourage our natural desire to hibernate and cosy-up indoors, but it’s still important for decor to dazzle.
This season, designers have taken a stroll through the British countryside and produced one of the most appealing looks - woodland, inspired by our flora and fauna.
This versatile trend can be interpreted to evoke a classic hunting lodge, or pared back to embrace an ultra-chic, rustic Scandi retreat.
If that’s too tame and you yearn to travel farther afield, there’s a retro-explorer look, evoked by classic mementoes like trunks and globes.
Alternatively, go East to embrace the colour, sensuality and pattern of the Orient, or simply celebrate luxury with textures like silk and velvet and metallics, especially bronze and gold.
“Our big trend this season is woodland,” says Sue Roberts, director of home at House of Fraser.
“Warm and homely, it combines wooden furniture with soft, autumnal patterns, and features owls, hedgehogs and other woodland creatures. It works in virtually any interior and is an easy way to update a room.”
Nature puts on its finest show at this time of year with glorious changes across our landscapes.
Follow the experts’ guide to the trends so that you can do the same at home and enjoy showing off your own seasonal decor transformations.
We’re inspired by looks from around the world, so it’s no surprise that there’s a trend which reflects our love of travel and exploring.
“Restoration is a traditional, antique-esque trend, featuring rich leathers and revival-style furniture. It has a relaxed feel and a masculine, gentleman’s club quality,” says Roberts.
Put your passport away and simply evoke the globetrotting mood by accessorising. Items like globes and leather-trimmed travel trunks make great focal points, Roberts suggests, as well as maps, which are featuring on fabrics as well as in framed prints.
n Top tip: If that’s too macho for your taste, Roberts highlights an alternative: laid-back country elegance, featuring faded floral patterns, soft shades and distressed wooden furniture. For a more rustic take, enliven with woodland-themed accessories.
n On trend details: Linea Halo Industrial Trunk side table, £749, and Mini Vintage Globe, £25; for woodland style a Mr Fox or Mrs Squirrel Knitted Cushion, £25 each, all House of Fraser (www.houseoffraser.co.uk/0870 160 7270).
Down to the wire
We’re celebrating design and increasingly use our rooms to showcase striking pieces which speak volumes about our taste with their style and craftsmanship.
“The key trend that we anticipated as a design team for this season was the concept of ‘the drawn black line’, with products reflecting their absolute beginnings as hand-drawn sketches on paper,” says Polly Dickens, creative director at Habitat, known for its innovative contemporary looks.
“We’ve used a range of ultra-fine materials to achieve this drawn line effect using black rattan, wire and skinny metals.”
n Top tip: An indigo palette is key for this season and beyond, says Dickens. “Intense cobalt and inky blues are making a transition from the fashion catwalk into interiors.”
n On trend details: Sura Black Rattan Armchair, from £300; Blot Blue and White Cushion, £25, and Blot Bedspread, £120 (available from October 8), Habitat (www.habitat.co.uk/0844 499 1111).
Our love affair with all things Scandi, from their television dramas to their style, is still going strong.
A cool, neutral palette, with emphasis on pared-back design and interesting textures, are essential ingredients for this look.
“Nordic Folk is our interpretation and it brings a simple, homespun aesthetic with a timeless Scandinavian influence,” says Pam McDermott, head of home buying at Sainsbury’s.
“A clean, crisp palette of milky white, relaxing grey and icy blue is warmed with berry red, evoking the crispness of a wintry day.
“With block prints and paper-cut designs across textiles, home accessories and tableware, this relaxed look transforms rooms into cosy winter retreats.”
n Top tip: Don’t feel confined to one trend, says McDermott. Embrace elements of others, including the quintessentially British hedgerow style, or indulge in glamour with metallics, like gold and burnished copper.
n On trend details: Soft Blue Chunky Knitted Throw, £35; Wooden Tripod Floor Lamp with grey or cream shade, £75, Sainsbury’s (www.sainsburys.co.uk/0800 636 262).
Comfort, sensual textures and unashamed luxury are never going to fall out of favour, and they’re particularly strong this season.
Our desire for cosseting rooms which are also glamorous, reflects our desire for homes that act as retreats from the harsh economic reality outside.
“Whenever I describe Anthology, our trend story, to people, I talk about the Victorian era and natural history, and I always think of films like Sherlock Holmes,” says Joanna Bolt, head of trends at Homebase.
“It’s a dark, moody look which creates a sense of vintage and nostalgia. Rich reds, deep purples and browns combine with luxurious fabrics such as velvet, leather and heavy knits.”
Enliven with quirky finishing touches, from a stag head ornament to a butterfly-print cushion, she suggests.
n Trend tips: Typography’s in fashion and features on fabrics and accessories from prints to cushions, says Bolt. Don’t overlook a feminine approach with subtle, muted florals, and oversized decorative mirrors.
n On trend details: Gloss White Stag Ornament, £12.99; Butterfly Print Cushion, £12.99; Hartfield Snuggler sofa, can be upholstered in a variety of fabrics, £549, all Homebase (www.homebase.co.uk/0845 600 2420).