Summer just got sweet, with sugary shades inspired by tasty ice cream treats, our favourite dessert for the season, starring on the decor menu.
Think mouth-watering tones of vanilla, strawberry pink, pistachio, butterscotch and lemony yellow, and either use them sundae style - by whipping up a delicious mix - or simply add single scoops of colour to lift a room.
“The most delicious colours of summer this year are definitely the ice cream shades, which capture the essence of a day at the beach,” says Marianne Shillingford, creative director at Dulux.
“You can create your own decorating sundae, with creamy Vanilla Scoop between layers of chocolatey Rope Swing and the butterscotch hints of Sandy Steps from our range. These colours have been designed to evoke the essence of the seaside, and what’s so lovely about them is that they look warm but fresh during the day, and soft and flattering once the sun’s gone down.”
If you want a fresh and inviting look, use different shades of pretty pastels for walls, woodwork and furniture, to create an easy-on-the-eye harmonious atmosphere for your parlour.
With sunny days on the way, this is an ideal time to give rooms a makeover, or at least a refresh, and feast on full-fat colour for light and lovely schemes.
Dip into an irresistible palette of ice cream colours for playful, fun look to a room.
“There’s no easier way to add colour to your interiors than to inject it with soothing pastel tones. They’re renowned for their mood-enhancing, lifting qualities but - as with any colour - too many shades in a single room can be overwhelming. Ideally, pair one or two with a neutral,” says Jenny Seabrook, buyer at Topps Tiles.
“White or cream will sharpen pastel shades or, if you prefer, combine a trio of pale, subtle shades for a more feminine, girly scheme. Think sugar rose pink, lilac and icy blue, and then define the room by accessorising with natural wood tones and soft metallics, for a calm, romantic look.”
It’s hard to resist dipping into paints with good-enough-to-eat names like Vanilla Scoop, Pistachio Whip, and Boutique Cream. They’re in the Dulux MixLab range, and a matt emulsion is £24.29 for 2.5L. Just as delicious sounding and looking is the Pink Pastel matt emulsion, £41.63 for 5L, from Ecos Organic Paints.
For a chic interpretation, a smart diamond-patterned Hampus wallpaper by Sandberg, £60 per roll, Wallpaper Direct, fits the bill. Its pattern features several creamy shades; butterscotch yellow, pink and pale blue.
There’s an attractive, shimmery effect on the La Dolce Vita Patchwork tiles, £10.99 for a box of four, Topps Tiles, which are available in soft white, pink and blue pastels, and would add a touch of glamour to a bathroom or kitchen. Equally desirable is the new slim and stylish Artelinea Monolite bathroom storage range, available in a sweet blush pink, which starts from £1,500, CP Hart.
These accessories are nice - but not at all naughty, when it comes to price. A Set Of Three Retro Storage Suitcases, in pink, duck egg blue and mint, £17.95, Tittlemouse. Pep up a sofa with a pink Geo Cushion, £32, Oliver Bonas.
Beautifully designed vases and tea light holders are always eye-catching, and a Porcelain Wobble Vase in Soft Pink, £12.95, Nordic House, is a winner. It’s well matched by Harriet Caslin’s delicate Tea-light Holder, £20, which comes in a choice of four soft pastels, from Home of Artisans.
“A palette of pretty pastels, enlivened by dashes of citrus brights, will set the tone for summer,” says Mark Carter, director at Shutterly Fabulous.
“Make the most of natural light and have white or a pale pastel on walls, and then add interest with a deeper version of the pastel shade. So for instance, pale green and then a block of mint green for shutters or paintwork. To bring more vibrancy, accessorise with a bright citrus yellow.”
If you’re a mint green fan, Shutterly Fabulous features the colour, alongside a comprehensive range of other shades, including pastels, in its range. Shutters start from £290 a square metre. Loaf’s picked green for one of its upholstery choices, a Jade vintage linen, for the Fella Sofa, which starts from £1,095. Team it with its super pastel striped Tuppence herringbone rug, from £165.
One of the easiest ways to give a dining area a lift is with colourful chairs, and if you’re feeling like a splurge, Neptune has a new Harrogate chair, available in Peppercorn Pink, £270 each. But if the budget’s tight, simply spray paint some old chairs yourself!
Add a couple of witty touches, such as a Newgate Ice Cream Cone Wall Clock, £35, Red Candy, with the slogan: ‘You can’t buy happiness... But you can buy ice cream’, and display some Ice Cream Glasses, available in lemon or turquoise, £14 each from the Royal Academy shop, which would also make good vases.
You can’t beat two buys at pocket money prices: Trinca-Ferro’s cupboard handles range includes a Ceramic Love Me Do Pink Knob, £3.20. Paper wall decorations are on trend, and Ginger Ray has a pastel pink Circle Fan Pinwheel Decoration, £6.99.