Natural Living

The use of natural materials in the home is ever increasing. Wood, ratan, and linen are just a few that are becoming more present in our interiors.

For many, using these natural materials balances our otherwise overly computer-connected lives. As the amount of technology we use continues to increase, adding natural elements to your home can help to offset this & feel more connected to nature.

Natural elements work as stunning neutrals with the ability to add an instant feeling of style & luxury.

Using 100% natural materials comes at a cost, so we are lucky that many companies have created amazing dupes to give you the look without the price tag. One example is Stoopen & Meus with their Conqrete paint. A concrete effect paint that gives you that industrial look & feel of real concrete.

Using natural materials ( or look-a-like alternatives ) give a space a timeless look that will last a lifetime.

Images by Arte – Le Rotin 60510

Colour Drenching

Colour Drenching: using one colour or various shades of it, across different surfaces in a space. 

We are seeing a big move within the industry towards deep, warmer & richer shades, and not only on the walls. It is becoming increasingly popular to carry the same colour – or a shade of it – onto the woodwork and even the ceiling.

It doesn’t have to stop there though.

Jump on the current ‘colour drenching ‘ trend and go for furniture in similar hues to create a sense of intmacy and comfort. This style of decorating can give you the perfect backdop for a statement piece, whether it’s a bold piece of furniture or a striking chandelier.

If you want to break it up a bit, metallics and natural textures are great to disperse blocks of colour without compromising the overall effect.

It is important not to forget the 5th wall – also known as the ceiling. Painting the ceiling & the woodwork in the same colour ( or shade of ) as the walls, can elongate the space as there is a more cohesive flow to the room. This can work to accentuate small spaces.

You don’t have to go dark, this can work just as well with neutral or more timid colours. The key is to keep this colour going on all the surfaces.

Little Greene show this perfectly:

Why not give it a go?

If you’re not sure where to start or what to do, book in for an interior design consultation with one of our team.

“Changed Hands?”

The other day I had a chat with a customer and a paint manufacturer’s name that I haven’t heard in a long while came up – Signpost Paints.

It got me thinking about the merry go round of paint companies and what became of many of them or who owns who now?

I’ve been in the paint industry since 1987. When I first joined the company the most recognisable (and certainly our biggest supplier) was Crown Paints…largely due to being advertised on Liverpool FC’s shirts! Liverpool were league champions twice in my first 2 years here and then they waited 30 years for another one. Must have felt like waiting for a painted front door to dry!

Crown are still one of the biggest players (pun intended) and we’re still proud to be major stockists of all of their brands but they haven’t been owned by Crown Paints as such for a long while.

From memory I’ve seen them change hands 6 times from Crown to Reed, to Williams Holdings to Akzo Nobel to Endless to Hempel….who have recently bought Farrow and Ball!

During that time, the collective owners have bought, sold, closed and shelved such well known names as Permoglaze, Sandtex, Sadolin, Sikkens, Signpost, Magicote, Macpherson, Berger and more!

And Crown themselves were thrown into the ether in 2006 when their owners, Akzo Nobel bought ICI Dulux and as part of the deal had to release Crown, Sandtex, Sadolin and Macpherson into the market which is where Endless (apparently a Mercedes Benz Franchise) bought them. Blimey!

And so, back to the name that started my chain of thought…Signpost.

Well, out of the ashes of Signpost Paints, one of the chemists started a new company with a friend from another defunct company, Ripolin.

That company is the maker of

MSP and Barn Paint! You’ll find a full stock of all of their paints in both our

Harlow and Buckhurst Hill shops!

I’m not sure how many times this will happen again but if I’m still selling paint in another 34 years (I’ll be 84!)  I can’t imagine things will have stayed the same…

I shall update the diary!

Be well.

Pat.