Blue and green should never be seen. Carrots will help you see in the dark. Touch that again and it will drop off. These are just some of the lies we’re fed as children, many of which become rules that seep into our subconscious and stay with us for life. And the latest fallacy to be overturned is that stripes and squares don’t work well together. You can’t blame our mums for being hesitant – back when they were learning the dogmas of style it was the era when everything matched, from sofa to curtain pelmet, rug to perfectly plumped scatter cushion. One colour scheme ran throughout, and the only pattern was provided by the artex swirls on the ceiling.
But this is the time of maximalism, when anything goes, and everything does. Case in point is the French fashion label Sonia Rykiel’s latest home collection in collaboration with Lelievre. Exapanding the line from a few well chosen cushions and bean bags, the stripe wallpapers and square-print fabric brings the brands playful sense of fun from the catwalk (where all their models are told to smile, and sometimes even dance down the runway) to interiors. The thinking is that as long as the colours are bright enough, it doesn’t matter if the patterns clash – they’ll all pull together in one exciting mishmash.
Paired here with a white panelling around the bottom of the room to soften the look, it works better if you don’t over clutter with too many accessories – after all, the patterns are so loud that they more than speak for themselves. It’s a bold look that may not to be to everyone’s tastes (try explaining it next time your Mum pops over for tea), but if the Americans can do stars and stripes why can’t we match with them squares?
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Pip McCormac, Guest Editor
View all posts by Pip McCormac, Guest Editor