As the holiday season quickly throws itself upon us and the idea of jet-setting to a warmer clime is perhaps an overly expensive one, a summer holiday in the British countryside may be on the cards. Or, possibly like me, you like to believe that you’re a born adventurer, happiest when snuggled in varying degrees of layers in a sleeping bag whilst the wilderness outside awaits. Luckily, throughout the UK, we’re blessed with idyllic landscapes and scenery, from the foreboding mountains and stunning highlands of Scotland, to the sandy beaches and breath taking moors of Cornwall and Devon.

Being a northern girl at heart, escaping to the romance of the Lake District or the charming Yorkshire Dales is my idea of bliss, which means I’m often packing (OK, cramming) my belongings into as small a space as possible, to then pitch up my tent once the weekend sunshine appears. And, as summer has finally peeked through the grey clouds of a mostly dull winter and spring, the lush green leaves and bright flowers of the season have dominated the landscape to spark inspiration.

Bringing the flowers of the British countryside into our homes has long been a trend in interior design, with roses, bluebells and thistles being a staple in wallpaper patterns and upholstering, thanks to the likes of Cath Kidston and Laura Ashley. Perhaps you remember attempting to create pressed flowers and preserved petals to frame when you were a child? Unfortunately, this was never to much of a success in my case.

This kind of inspiration from untouched woods, abundant meadows and delicate flowers needn’t be limited to the traditional, pretty or kitsch style. Personally, I’m much more a lover of minimalism and simple elegance, opting instead for bold, large images or prints and the colour of soft, mossy green smothered over a wall. I tend to find that the incorporation of floral inspired colour on walls is a simpler, and less invasive alternative to wallpaper, creating a subtle symbol to help you reminisce about your camping getaways or B&B escapes to the countryside.

A secret message to yourself and your loved ones which no one else is in on... unless you tell them, of course.

Add a touch of wilderness into the home

  • A wall or accents painted in dainty hues of soft lavender, daffodil yellows or elderflower cream look perfect paired against bold, textured furnishings or framed artwork, and appear fresh when used alongside crisp white bathroom suites.
  • If you're feeling brave, opt for bold hues of buttercup yellows, cornflower blues or vivid peony pinks, for a striking effect in the home. Use these colours sparsely to pair well with contemporary interiors and minimal furnishing.  
  • For those who are renting or want to keep things simpler, paint your own pieces of furniture such as a table, chairs, or cabinets to instantly revive your home without becoming a permanent solution.
  • A change as simple as updating your towels or blinds can also inject a stunning colour block or floral twist and simply be removed or updated as the seasons change.
  • Play with texture and colour by finding three or four shades of your favourite plant hue and pairing them with different materials for a contemporary look. Rose pink pillows from waffle knit wools to brushed cottons look great when placed together.

The British countryside is abundant in different flowers; from the pretty, dainty meadows full of delicate forget-me-nots, to hedgerows dripping in the soft hues of hawthorn, wild cherries and crab apple or even uninhabited forest floors carpeted with wild bluebells and mosses. Whichever takes your fancy, it can all be easily incorporated into your home in as subtle or loud a statement as desired. 

So, if you’re about to venture into the unknown and try your first holiday in the countryside, glamping, camping or staying snug in a B&B, perhaps you’ll be as touched by nature as I have been and allow your wanderings to strike subtle, contemporary inspiration into your home.

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