As the temperature drops, we chat to interior expert and Kmart design lead Kate Hopwood about easy ways to transition your home as we enter the cooler months
1/What are the key ways to transition your home as the cold weather hits?
Similar to dressing for winter, transitioning your home for the cooler months is all about the layers. In the living room, beautiful textured throws and extra cushions are essential for snuggling up on cold winter nights and lush rugs underfoot take the chill off floorboards. In the bedroom, the best way to prepare for cold weather is again layering, not only with blankets, cushions and rugs, but also by adding hidden (but oh-so-heavenly) layers, such as an electric blanket and flannelette sheets, which are available in so many stylish prints.
2/What colour palette are we seeing coming into homes this winter?
A monochrome palette of black, white and greys is key this season, with pops of pastels added for subtle warmth.
3/What are some of the best ways to get a lounge ready for winter?
Cushions, throws and textured rugs offer an instant style update to your lounge. Decorative items such as candles make any space more inviting, and as it gets darker earlier, placing lamps at various heights around your room adds drama, depth and cosiness.
4/How can people ‘warm’ their homes stylishly?
Good preparation will keep you warm this winter. Firstly, think about which rooms in your home you spend the most time in. Within these rooms, look at the space available and identify the best place to seamlessly and safely use a heat source. When it comes to the look of heaters, less is more. Minimalistic heaters that not only perform well but don’t steal the spotlight are always on trend.
5/What would the ideal winter lounge look like?
Texture, texture and more texture! Combining a mix of shapes, materials and scale can transform your lounge and make the space so much more inviting. Positioning items in series of triangles, such as a cluster of candles on the coffee table, draws the eye as it travels across the room and adds extra detail to a space.
6/What influence does Scandinavian design have in homeware this winter?
A key element of Scandinavian design is beautiful, simple, functional pieces, and this look is definitely influencing homewares this season. We are seeing more blonde wood rather than dark timbers, and rounded shapes rather than sharp edges and of course minimal colour use with subtle pops of stronger colours here and there.
7/What are some statement winter items people should have in their homes?
Big, bold print rugs can transform a space and instantly add warmth both underfoot and visually. Faux fur rugs or cushions thrown over an armchair is also a great look and essential for hunkering down this winter. Printed blankets are soft to touch, great for snuggling and add a pop of interest to an otherwise plain sofa or seating area. Lastly, an ottoman brings the space together and is perfect for putting your feet up or propping a steaming mug upon.
8/In what forms should lighting be seen this winter? How can lighting – done the right way – change the feel of a room?
A lamp that casts a soft glow gives a gorgeous ambience to any space. Positioning three lamps in a variety of shapes and heights around your lounge room can completely change the feel of it. Exposed bulbs are very on trend this winter, offering a pared back look that works perfectly with the Scandinavian trend.
9/What roles do different textures play in the home this winter?
Matte textures are key this winter, in particular wood, powder-coated metals, felt and fur. The beauty of playing with various textures is that you can mix them quickly and easily to achieve a new look.
10/How can people give their kitchen items an update during the cooler months?
Cooking at home steps up a gear in the cooler months and hearty meals keep our energy maintained through the colder temperatures. Appliances are looking better than ever and are designed to be showcased rather than hidden away in cupboards, which is fantastic when you’re using them more often. For a quick, inexpensive update to the kitchen, change up tea towels, canisters and other small kitchen pieces that are frequently on display, opting for softer hues such as pale blue or light grey.
Interview by: Catherine Steel.