Hello everyone! I’m so glad that you’ve visited today because plants and flowers are such a big trend in home decor and today we have a special guest with us, British Author and Stylist Selina Lake, who is giving us 7 tips for decorating at home to create a style she’s called Botanical Style. In fact, you can see this style in her beautiful new book under the same title published by Ryland Peters & Small.
I’ve photographed some spreads at the end of this post — each page is one beautiful example after another of how to live with plants and flowers and it’s as intoxicating as it is informative and idea-packed. Would you like to see some of my favorite rooms from the book and hear some of Selina’s decor advice especially for decor8 readers today? Good! All 7 tips below are based on the photos directly above them, each tip is from Selina and the styling in the photo is also her own work. Let’s see what she has in store to inspire all of us today, shall we?
1. Bring the plants to the mantel
I’ve styled my marble mantlepiece using some key accessories to create the botanical mood. Vintage botanical prints are a great starting point, here I used a Marcus Ward & Co plant print by F.Edward Hulme, which I bought from a vintage fair to hang in the centre of the chimney breast wall. A great tip for hanging old prints is to use wooden trouser hangers, I buy mine online.
To add some pattern I have placed a large round tray adorning a Michael Angove Fennel & Dill design from Hus & Hem adjacent to the print. I love scented candles so I always have a couple ready to burn on my mantel, my favorites are Diptyque Bais and Moroccan Rose by True Grace.
Finally I add the botany, a Fittonia plant sits happily in its own microclimate under a glass dome. A lofty penstemon with coral pink flowers that I will plant out in my garden after a few days sits alongside lacy delta maidenhair ferns, with a faux tropical leaf stem from Abigail Ahern and fresh cuttings from my garden arranged in jam jars.
2. Don’t paint over the shabby and worn
There’s something really romantic about the bringing together something old with chipping paint or peeling vintage wallpaper and combining with beautiful botanical blooms. Here an amazing wall in a charming Swedish Farmhouse has been left with layers of old wallpaper visible in patches.
When restoring old buildings its tempting to rip out everything and start again but to save the vintage appeal and character of a space theres a fine balance between modernizing and making a space livable while still maintaining the glorious patina and charm. I’ve used cool blue hydrangeas along with flowering horse mint and displayed the stems in a array go simple glass vases.
3. Plants work great in an Industrial space
This fabulous plant shop is part of The Fresh Flower Company in East Dulwich, London and doubles as a workshop space were floral and plant demonstrations and botanical crafting take place. The rough brick walls of the former industrial space make the perfect backdrop for all the leafy plants, succulents and cactus that are for sale.
To recreate a full on industrial botanical display at home, your need an old piece of furniture which was once used in a factory, school, shop or a place of work. Think old wooden display cabinets, metal trollies and rough wooden tables with metal legs, then start collecting a variety of plants and use the surface of your industrial piece of furniture to create the display. Use concrete and metal pots to house the plants to keep the industrial theme coherent throughout.
4. Be dramatic
The trend for all things dark and floral has migrated from the fashion catwalks into our homes. In the living room of this London townhouse owned by Wild at Heart Florist Nikki Tibbles, ‘Dark Floral’ wallpaper by Ellie Cashman makes a dramatic statement. The large-scale floral is inspired by the still life paintings of the Dutch Golden Age, Its majestic with its rose and peony cascade and showy background. There’s no need for blousy, fresh flower arrangements in this room as the walls do the talking. The modern copper table lamps establishes a modern feel while pops of color ensures the room isn’t gloomy with the botanical green cushions and colorful tapestry pouffe by Frédérique Morrel.
5. Create a natural look that is still well-planned
This multi functional living space in Carole Poirot’s London apartment has been carefully divided into zones that are united by houseplants, poppy seed heads and foliage. The low white display cabinet on the right separates the dining areas from this end of the room, where a daybed loaded with cushions and throws provides a cosy spot for relaxation. The book cabinet and desk on the left make a compact home office area. Unite your own open plan space with botanicals by choosing a selection of houseplants which suit your furniture pieces. Use trailing plants up high on the top of tall cupboards or bookcases and gather small pot plants together in another area maybe on a coffee or side table.
6. Cover Your Headboard (and footboard)
Botanicals make an appearance in this glam London bedroom on the bed! It’s been upholstered in a digital print floral fabric. To try something similar in your own room, recover a padded headboard with a bold floral fabric or choose a full on floral quilt. The cushions have a luxury feel and are made from vintage silk scarves. Placing fresh flowers next to your bed is always a good idea, especially if they are scented like these roses.
7. As a Bold Pattern In a White Room
I love this Castanea wallpaper by House of Hackney which I have on one wall of our otherwise white bedroom. My tip here was I positioned our bed against the wall so it sill felt like a calm sleep space, while keeping a fun element. I’m normally not one for the ‘matchy matchy’ look but I’m such a fan of this particular design I needed the matching linen cushions to complete the look. A simple filament bulb with black flex makes a great bedside light and there’s always a suitable corner for a potted palm.
Wow, thanks Selina for those tips… So readers, here are some shots of the book from my personal copy so you can get a sense of what it looks like inside…
Thank you so much for visiting us today on decor8 Selina with your great tips for bringing Botanical Style to our homes. It was such a pleasure having you and I’ve loved looking at your book so far, it’s gorgeous and I wish you all the best with it!
(Photography: Rachel Whiting © Ryland Peters & Small – Book spreads photographed by Holly Becker for decor8)