Mind The Gap

I don’t know about you, but I am feeling a bit glum with all this miserable weather, darkening evenings and the ever present threat of the virus. I quite enjoyed autumn, the changing colours are always a joy, but now those leaves are all on the ground the landscape is a little bleak to say the least.

If, like me and most of us, you had to cancel your holiday this year, you are probably right now dreaming of sunny climes, warm sand, crystal clear waters and absolutely tons of ice cold gin and tonic BEFORE lunch. Are you also wondering when and if we will ever do that again with such a gay abandon as before – before this strange year that is.

SO – for a little brightener on this dark day how about looking towards a home decor project to lift that sinking mood. This pic from Mind The Gap conjures it all up, sunlight pouring through the window, jungle vibes, nature, reading book, bottle of Hendricks on the table (I bet you hadn’t spotted that!) and even a real (fake) palm tree to sit under.

Wallpaper Cayo Largo, Curtain fabric and rhs cushion in Barbados 100%Linen, Sofa covered in The Jungle 100% Linen, Rhs cushion in Traveller’s Palm 100% linen, Ravenala Lampshade

For all we know this is a tiny corner of a not very nice house, but so what, the designer has created an illusion of paradise for us so who are we to argue. See the bright light pouring through the window onto the palm trees waving on the wall? – well actually, it could be raining outside, but the clever curtain treatment has let light slip in sideways and bounce off the pale radiator and the pale wallpaper background, giving us that sunshine feel. Adding the soft neutral rug – and most likely a similar shade on the ceiling – gives space for all these rich colours to come into play without making the room at all oppressive, in fact it positively sings with life and vibrancy, just what we need today!!

MTG are superlative the way they load pattern upon pattern – my favourite type of decor – and they need to do this styling to give us the courage to leap into their stories. It’s a brave person who throws away “co-ordinate” and moves onto “mix and mismatch”. But “mismatch”, however scary for some, can be done very smartly with an underlying thread running through, here it is very obviously the tropical feel (here comes the sun….) along with the vibrant olivey green that threads its way through all the patterns. Then, just to stop it becoming boringly green and nodding towards co-ordination, at least in colour, they’ve thrown in the splash of orange to help those monkeys fly – which links us to the red in the parrot pic and there we are, full circle, back in the jungle!

All this talk of holidays and gin leads me onto the next pic, same wallpaper, different colour and just what a difference. Warm and moody, a feeling of flamenco or perhaps a return home from a long trip, (that bottle of Hendricks is still there nestling away beside the bag). On first glance It instantly made me think of Ernest Hemingway, his house in Key West, a few bridges down from the wallpaper namesake of Cayo Largo. Surrounded by shady palms and verandas to keep away the fiery heat, this room set could be be in any of those rooms within. And how easy to have a little corner of the Keys all of your own with these fabulous prints, could it just make you forget about the greyness outside?

Armchair covered in Barbados 100% linen, Wallpaper Cayo Largo Sunset

This chat about greyness reminds me of the visit I made to Prague one freezing March and while I was blowing on my hands and stamping my feet I suddenly remembered my sister in law – herself a strong contender in any drinking experience – telling me with great excitement about the Ernest Hemingway bar, not to be missed. It wasn’t at all like the feel of the Cayo Largo pic, actually quite gloomy, but the sudden warmth was very welcoming and I do, of course, love black. Low lighting, huge mirrors behind an even huger bar, cosy seats and the typical Czech way of piling quite large plates of nibbles along with your drink – thank goodness, they don’t seem to measure the spirits at all, just pour, endlessly. I felt obliged, once there, to sample quite a few cocktails, possibly to my detriment as the rest of the day went past in rather a blur. (Of course I never did re-read all my Hemingways, one of my favourite writers, but maybe now I will).

Abigail Sofa covered in Traveller’s Palm Linen, Wallpaper Cayo Largo

Looking for sunshine I’m fixating on these tropical prints and I love the way they can all integrate. To keep on the greens, the Traveller’s Palm as seen in the sofa here (ABOVE) sits well against either colours of the wallpapers in the last 2 pictures, but for a cool breezy effect its pretty perfect with the lighter version. Throw in plenty of lush greenery and some natural flooring and you could be in a bar in Barbados! (Just keeping with the bar theme!)

Then perhaps you could add in a few parrots, as another chair or just cushions, a fabric always worthy as a conversation piece.

Kingston Chair covered in Parrots of Brasil Linen, Wallpaper Cayo Largo

Maybe bring it all together with a few more cushions, aptly named The Jungle. Or to darken it all up, The Jungle wallpaper comes with an Anthracite background, oh so moody! Or you could just start from scratch and take the Smoke Blue version of The Jungle, team it with Cayo Largo Light and hey ho, we’re off on another scheme altogether. Honestly, the possibilities are endless!!

The Jungle Cushion

Or you could just start from scratch and take the Smoke Blue version of The Jungle, team it with Cayo Largo Light and hey ho, we’re off on another scheme altogether. Honestly, the possibilities are endless!!

All Photos : Mind the Gap

For products, click on the links below the photographs.

Jane McIntyre is an interior designer based in Hampshire offering a full interior design service. Please contact here for further information.