Have you been perusing some of the new interior trends and want to know where to start, without spending a fortune? Clair Strong explains how small adjustments can have a big impact

BOLD COLOURS

Bold, bright hues are dominating the colour trends this year, with shades like ultra violet (Pantone’s colour of the year), turquoise and hot pink looking especially popular. If you want to dip your toes into this trend, know that you don’t have to completely redecorate to accommodate it. Look at your existing design scheme and choose one or two bright colours that would complement it well. Then pick accessories in these colours: cushions, curtains, bed linen, lampshades, rugs and throws – the options are vast. This is the easiest and possibly most enjoyable trend to adopt, so my biggest piece of advice is to just have fun with it.Fishbone Coffee Table by Chaplins Furniture

TROPICAL PRINTS

This zesty, retro-inspired trend has grown up in the past few months. In 2016–17 it was all neon colours and pineapple prints. In 2018, we’ll see a more sophisticated take on this trend. Think large-scale palm leaf print wallpapers and fabrics, combined with green velvet sofas, dark wood furniture and brass accents (conveniently combining multiple trends in one). Tropical patterns have become more illustrative and realistic, and the colour palette simplified to shades of green. As a result of its evolution, this trend has become more enduring and is easier to adopt. Tropical print cushions on a sofa, or fabric-covered canvases give a subtle nod to the look, but for something really striking try an accent wall in your favourite print.Monstera Wallpaper on blush by Woodchip & Magnolia

BASIN & SINK STYLE

Sinks have long been quite uniform and functional, and while this has served a very useful purpose, it’s great to see designers breaking the mould. In 2018 we’re going to find basins and sinks in an array of experimental designs. Made from materials like copper, granite, marble, concrete and tile, sinks will become a statement feature in their own right. What’s most exciting about this trend is that it encourages people to mix and match – especially in the bathroom. We’re no longer restricted to matching all-white suites; we can mix materials and create an entirely bespoke look. This is especially useful if you’re trying to achieve that ultimate spa bathroom.Exo Stri Grey Marble Washbasin by Tikamoon

BIG ON VELVET

Velvet is a rich and sumptuous fabric that creates enticing warmth in a space. It can be made from a wide variety of fibres including cotton, silk, mohair, viscose and polyester, and so the quality, pile, colour and durability can vary from one velvet to another. In recent years, we’ve seen velvet sofas in an array of vibrant colours (one of the benefits of velvet is that it allows for great depth of colour in the dyeing process). But now it seems people are seeking even more ways to incorporate velvet into the home. I particularly like velvet curtains, hung high so they sweep theatrically from ceiling to floor. Hanging curtains high gives the illusion of taller windows and ceilings which adds to the drama and gives any room an instant, sophisticated lift.Urbanara velvet curains

DARK WOODS

There’s a definite move away from cool colours and towards warmth and depth. The bleached timber furniture from the Scandinavian trend is slowly being replaced by darker wood. And this is not just in furniture, but in the kitchen and architectural details too. If you like this new, moodier look, update your current furniture affordably with wood stain. Use it to darken existing light furniture, as long as it is made from real wood, not veneer. You can even stain timber flooring, if you’re up to the challenge. Lucien Sideboard Dark Mango Wood PRO7 MADE.com

INDUSTRIAL METALS

Metallics are not a new trend; we’ve had numerous popular metallic finishes come and go in the past several years. Right now, the metallic of the moment is brass. I think brass will likely be the most enduring of all the metallic trends. It has been fashionable many times before, and its look is more refined and evolved than that of its counterparts. It has all the same light-reflecting, glamour-adding benefits of other metallic finishes, but is somehow more understated than copper or gold. This means you can go really big with brass. So think floor lamps, side tables or mirror frames to create a really striking feature without having to change anything else in the room.Pastel Lustre Occasional Table by Audenza

SPA BATHROOMS

While many of us dream of Jacuzzi baths, built-in saunas and huge waterfall showers, these can be pricey. They’re also not entirely necessary, even if you aspire to creating a spa-like retreat. You can create a luxurious space without a full renovation. It’s all about the details. Details like a gorgeous, light-reflecting chandelier hanging above the bathtub, full-length voile curtains instead of blinds, gold or brass taps instead of chrome and large plants in beautiful pots. And keep your bathroom stocked up with piles of fluffy white towels and toiletries in pretty packaging – no spa would be without either. The Pure Bathroom Collection from Smiths Briten

Clair Strong Interior Design is a small, friendly, creative business based in Bath and London, providing services for residential and commercial clients. Visit: clairstrong.co.uk or contact: clair@clairstrong.co.uk

Featured image: Louis armchair in canary by Sofa.com