How To: Decorate With Pastels (Without Being Kitsch!)

Earlier this year, Pantone released their colours for 2016: Rose Quartz and Serenity. There was a lot of debate; why had they chosen two colours? Would we all decorate with pastels now? Did we even really like them?! The general feeling about these shades is a mixed one – you either love them or hate them. Whichever camp you fall into though, it’s a fact that pastels are making their way into interiors in a big way this year.

I’m going to be honest and say they’re not always my favourite set of shades, but in recent months I’ve come to like a flash of softer pink mixed with gold in my home office. My family is amazed, and I’m quite shocked myself! But, using pastels doesn’t mean your home will be full of flowers, soft prints and a general kitsch-ness. Yes, there is indeed a way to incorporate pastels into your home without going all gooey!

So, here’s my take on cool and sophisticated pastels…

Make It Bold

SETTEE - SOFA - pastel pink velvet SYBILLA

Help a sugary pastel look less sweet by giving it a strong, moody backdrop. Dark blues, greens, greys and even black are a fabulous antidote to a pastel shade and help make it feel bolder and stronger. Mix the pink sofa with other pastel colours and you instantly make it fluffy and soft, but add a dark hue and it really adds a punch.

Keep It On Trend 

Norsu Interiors Collection - Living room - October 2014

Combining pastel shades with metallics and strong geometric prints makes them edgy and bang on trend. With no flowers or daisy patterns in sight, this look is strong and fabulous. It’s just the kind of combination I love for my own home and, with a touch of Scandi sanctuary, this is actually my perfect living room of the moment.

Norsu Interiors Collection - Pastel Bedroom (May 15)

Lots of soft green and blue makes for a very calm and relaxing bedroom. They are the perfect colours for a sleep haven actually, emanating a soft coolness and enabling a good night’s rest. With hints of black, grey and real wood, this room is easy on the eye but not twee or kitsch in any way. It’s a perfect example of how to use pastel shades effectively in a contemporary home.

Mix and Match

Magis Air Armchair

I guess we’re seeing a recurring theme here; mix your softer pastels with bolder, stronger colours and you eliminate the risk of them appearing too sugary and sweet. That’s exactly what we’re seeing with this contemporary, slightly industrial looking dining set. Mixing chairs in various colours has been popular for a while now, and it ‘s a great opportunity to add in a softer pastel hue, taking the edge off the other, more acidic colours.

Mylands Floris No.27 on Petite Millbrook from The Cast Iron Bath Company

If you’ve never thought about adding a feminine pink into your home, maybe this image above will change your mind. The decorative floor sets the tone but it’s really the pink cast iron bath that draws you in. Against the dark backdrop wall, and with a peak of gold tap, this is a cool and contemporary bathroom fit for any woman, or man.

Are you a fan of pastel shades this season? Are you inspired by the ideas here on how to mix pastels into your home? Oak Furniture Land would love to hear from you! Tweet us @OFLOakFurniture or send us pics of your pastel themed homes over on Instagram @oak_furniture_land.