Ask Will Taylor to describe his home decor and his answer is unhesitating: sea-inspired style with a touch of sunshine.
“I’m often at my happiest by the ocean with salty, windswept hair, barefoot, with sand between my toes, and nothing to crowd my mind beyond the endless roll call of blue hues. I like to use these dreamy experiences and blue pool tones to inform the décor of my own interior space,” explains the author of the gloriously illustrated Dream Decor: Styling a Cool, Creative and Comfortable Home, Wherever You Live.
The book opens the door to beautiful spaces throughout the world, as well as his own home.
Taylor’s design ethos certainly explains why his apartment is more evocative of a Mediterranean sunspot than its actual urban London setting.
Brilliant white walls are the perfect backdrop for cheerful splashes of colour provided by collections of framed prints, and there’s an array of vivid accessories, from lamps to vases.
“Blue and white is one of my absolute favourite colour combinations and nowhere is it more crisp and vital than in the jewel-bright setting between the Mediterranean and the Aegean Sea,” he enthuses.
“Combining these shades in varying degrees of intensity is often a winner for decor, whatever shade of blue you choose for your keynote – whether its deep and cocooning indigo, or refreshing sky blue.
“Also, when I’m working on a scheme, I always try to bring a touch of sunshine to each room with an injection of yellow. The scheme for my home office is based on the colours of a rowing boat I saw in a small fishing village, with its weathered yellow and blue panels, and just sitting in there transports me to that idyllic spot.”
Colour is Taylor’s passion and he describes himself as a “gentleman hooked-on-hue.” His hugely successful interiors blog, Bright.Bazaar, which he founded seven years ago, is recognised as a must-visit site for those wanting to learn how to live in a more technicolour world.
“I believe, no matter where you live, you can create a cool, creative and comfortable space to call your own. To me, a well-decorated home is a collection of personal dividends gathered from one’s experiences and adventures while travelling, or simply gleaned from day-to-day personal surroundings,” says Taylor, whose book includes easy-to-follow guides to achieving a host of chic looks, from Hollywood chic and Italian rustic, to petite Parisienne and Scandi comfort.
“I’ve lost count of the number of times a new-to-me place, or seeing a routine experience in a new light, has resulted in an urge to bottle up one of those many sensory feelings to bring back home so I can interpret them into my decor. It’s lovely to experiment and have fun with interiors and colour.”
If you’re looking to make colour the central element of your scheme, there are two main routes to choose from, advises Taylor. “Either create an all over colour statement, such as wallpaper or paint across all walls, or introduce a lone splash which stands out in a neutral space. Achieve that with a vibrant bedspread draped over white bedding, or maybe an oversized piece of art.”
“In my open-plan living and dining area, I’ve used yellow and dusty pink as accent colours to inject hue into a monochromatic base palette – there’s one black feature wall and the rest are white. The abstract art above a white linen sofa was a point of reference for my chosen accent shades.”
“Translating the seductive colours and textures of the Mediterranean into your home is simple,” says Taylor. “Sit vivid shades of azure blue against fresh whites and accent the palette with shots of hot pink, inspired by the abundance of bougainvillea.
“The key ingredients are white-washed walls, weathered wood, terracotta, a burst of yellow, earthenware and painted shutters. A peppering of organic elements – a bowl of citrus fruits and vase of cut blooms, for example, are a perfect finishing touch.”
For even more authenticity, he advises introducing textural interest by juxtaposing rough stone walls with cool, tiled floors and soft linen upholstery.