So, I guess this is the introduction of Home and Interiors content here on Helpless Whilst Drying – I guess this may be Helpless Whilst Watching Paint Dry over the next few months. Last week I was invited over to John Lewis in Peterborough by the Home Design team to take a look at the new trends and items that they have arriving into stores and online.
In the past John Lewis have had a more regimented way of looking at trends – often splitting into four or five designs at any one time with a bit more strict rules. However they’ve shook things up and have some new trends and the idea behind the pieces that they are bringing into store is that they are a bit more transcendent between one another.
John Lewis for my readers outside of the UK is a department store, which has recently rebranded to John Lewis and Partners. It’s the affordable end of luxury in my opinion and are known for quality products. The recent rebrand has taken place to really confirm that each member of staff is a partner in the store – taking home shares of profits if the business does well. So as you can imagine the staff care about the customers to make sure the business does well.
We were greeted by Mary and Sally who are two of three of the design team in the Peterborough store – they talked us through the latest looks that John Lewis think are going to be big over the next year (more on that later) as well as the different services that they can help you with when revamping your interior.
They primarily offer two different services – these are not exclusive to the Peterborough store and can be taken up in any John Lewis store across the country.
The first is their Home Design Consultation Service, which sounds as it says on the tin, a Home Designer comes to your home to see the space they are working with and help understand what elements you want to change or keep – understand the flow and the feel of your house or room in person, this service covers 1-3 rooms. Rooms are designed up including everything from wall colours and curtains to lamps and knick-nacks digitally and items picked to work with the room once complete, it becomes a conversation with the customer to swap it out until the room is perfect under no obligation to buy.
This costs £250 however it is refundable against a £1500 spend over a 6 month period (discretionary extendable too, e.g building work running over). Need not worry if you write this of thinking you are not near a John Lewis to partake in this service – the stores have a huge coverage to make sure every corner of the country is covered.
The second service is a completely free in-store service which is a 90 minute appointment where you bring along pictures and dimensions of the room, they then take you for a walk around the shop floor or bring items into get a real feel for your likes and dislikes. Where time is available they’ll also create renders of the room, but it’s not always guaranteed – but they’ll help you pick items for your space and get the look you are trying to achieve bang on.
Both of these services can range from a customer having no idea where to start with a project and needing their hand holding the whole way through, to someone who has got half way through and is struggling to find the finishing bells and whistles having run out of steam.
You can book these services online here.
Now let’s take a look at the Autumn Winter Interior Trends
Whilst I like all of the trends that are the focus and would struggle to pick just one, I think if I was forced to To the Max would be my favourite. Gone are the days of minimalist looks (which was never my bag), and hello maximalists, you’re in luck. It’s not about having clutter, but instead pushing textures, patterns and colours to the maximum, living bolding in an aesthetic of excess. It’s about opulent velvets, vibrant upholstery, eye-catching metallics and striking prints.
All living together in perfect harmony.
Blogger friendly marbles, blush pinks and tropical prints are all well and truly complimentary of this trend. My favourite pieces were a gold edged decorative bowl which had blue and pastel pink splatters on the inside. The John Lewis Ipanama wallpapers featuring palm leaves to toucans (just what I’ve been looking for my office) and a gorgeous mustard velvet sofa.
The lighting in this area is also some of my favourites across the store, with a stunning marble set of lights, one with a hanging trio of lights and a lamp which had an extra bulb in the base (I may have that earmarked for my Christmas list already this year!
The Nordic Retreat trend is the new thinking of the more simplistic scandi trends, with warmer neutral tones, soft greys and a very clean vibe pulls together with simple acccessories focusing on ceramics, geometric shapes, smoked glass and mirror complimented against the natural wood finishes.
Furniure in this trend is very clean lined and ‘not bulky’ and almost has a coastal vibe to it too which works well with the muted blue and navy tones which pair well with this chic look.
The Design Project range is John Lewis’ pride and joy. The most premium featuring range and has the feeling of a really premium bouji boutique hotel. The main focus of colour in this range are dark jewel tones such as ruby and emerald complimented against dark walnut woods and accented with metallics. Brass is well and truly back and it’s big in this trend as an accent.
Pieces in this trend almost don’t feel trendy, they have a thoroughly modern feel but also classic pieces that just won’t go out of style. This range is all about quality and craftmanship. This range has that upmarket cosy feel of comfort and warmth. Items in this range are labelled Design Project No. 160 (as an example) which kind of gives it an almost ‘room number’ to each item.
Online I happened to spy some lovely pieces from this range from cushions to cupboard knobs and I think I’ve already found a couple of pieces to get my hands on. These modern twist on the mid-century style raised plant pots have my name on and I can see these sitting on my new fireplace already.
The Croft Collection is one which has been around in around for a while. For me it links in pretty well with the Nordic Retreat trend – but it takes away the ‘scandiness’, keeps the country feel and adds back in a bit of a modern English cottage vibe. It keeps similar kinds of tones so these would work well blended together, with whites, greys, navy or sages and oaks it has the familiar coastal feel too.
It’s another range which feels very timeless too – oak seems to be a wood which never changes in fashion – and is the predominate material in this range. Nature is bought in with vases stemmed with flowers (artificial arrangements available), succulents and large cuttings from plants and trees.
Fabrics in this range are a bit more informal, with weave patterns and linen textures against a backdrop of blown-up simple watercolour designs. I’ve noticed a theme with the pieces in this range and whilst they have texture and detail they’re kept pretty simple in shape and colour.
What I like most about this range is that I feel like most people probably have items of oak furniture in their house, it’s easily a trend for me which is refreshable with pieces you already own without needing to start from scratch. I have a new dining room table that’s oak waiting in Ben’s parents garage and I can already see how I may blend elements of this look in.
Finally, the last look is House, I referred to it as the house wine of trends as it’s their lowest pricepoint in general. This range is fun and affordable.
It’s punchy in pattern and colour and quite trend led with what’s popular. This season there’s lots of Mustards and turquoise tones as core colours, with a backdrop of whites and splashes of complimenting navy and millenial blush pink.
The patterns in this range from abstract paint stroke shapes to ditsy polka dots – but the star of this show has to be the cheerful Cheetah design. Found on lots of items from lamps to cushions.
The range has a lot of choices and extends to fabric on the roll (I have a couple of metres I want to grab to make some cushions from on the mustard prints!) to wallpapers. The nice thing about this range I think is because it’s bold in pattern and colour it can act as a nice accent that will have a lot of focus in the room without having to change everything up to accommodate it.
John Lewis have got most styles covered and I love the idea of using their design services if you are stuck on finishing a room or have no idea where to start.
What is your interior style?
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