Interior Design

Fiona Barratt shows us how to mix classic with contemporary design

Defined by bold and symmetrical silhouettes with intricate finishes, Fiona’s signature style blends sophisticated neutrals interlaced with bursts of accent colour.

Fiona Barratt

Fiona Barrattreveals how to successfully incorporate classic, timeless design with modern elements.

See our news section for more tips from experts in their field

1. Stay cool with whites and neutrals

Small accents of white are a wonderful way to lift and freshen any colour scheme.White is best when combined with texture to avoid a flat, one-dimensional feel. Wood works exceptionally well in this instance.

2. Versatile storage

A well-curated library is on everybody's wish list, and if it isn't, then it should be.Books can bring culture and intelligence to any room; as Cicero once said, 'A room without books is like a body without a soul.'Those looking for a more stylised result, which will have a greater impact on the overall look and feel of the room, will arrange books in blocks of colour. Fitted shelves, at ceiling height, make for an attractive display.

3. Handleless cabinetry

Creating a fuss-free, family friendly design is easy with handleless cabinetry.Technological advances in push-open and close doors means that it has become possible to dispense with handles in both wall and base cabinets. If you prefer not to have push-open cupboards, then recessed handles provide the same sleek look and can be lined with contrasting colours and materials to add interest.

4. Wow with wood

Out of fashion for a while, wood is now enjoying a bit of a revival. Wood introduces a sense of warmth and character into a scheme and works equally well in modern and traditional homes.

5. Shades of grey

Now the biggest-selling paint colour after white, grey has secured its position as the modern neutral.Darker tones of charcoal can be used to add drama anywhere in the home – with clever lighting you can create a look that is both strong and atmospheric.

6. Let light in

Interior schemes can be greatly enhanced with the right lighting. The key is to create a layered scheme, which allows statement lighting to shine, but not dominate a space with flat light.The latest innovations mean that you don’t have to completely overhaul a scheme in order to make a difference. The beauty of a statement pendant is that it can work well in just about any interior scheme.

7. Add art

Invest wisely in something you love to bring pleasure and potential returns.Affordable art fairs, where you can pick up a modern master for under a £1000 are thriving.

Jennifer Ebert
Deputy Editor (Digital)

Jennifer is the Digital Editor at Homes & Gardens. Having worked in the interiors industry for a number of years, spanning many publications, she now hones her digital prowess on the 'best interiors website' in the world. Multi-skilled, Jennifer has worked in PR and marketing, and the occasional dabble in the social media, commercial and e-commerce space. Over the years, she has written about every area of the home, from compiling design houses from some of the best interior designers in the world to sourcing celebrity homes, reviewing appliances and even the odd news story or two.