If you’ve been hooked on the new BBC TV show Interior Design Masters since it started in August, you won’t have been able to miss designer Ju de Paula. Her colourful designs and pattern clashing style are taking the show by storm. I was lucky enough to interview her around this time last year so I thought I’d share some photos of her home to inspire you to be just bold with colour and print as Ju is…
Ju is an inspirational designer with a passion for colour, a ‘bit of a thing’ for flowers (her words!) and an instinct for creating personality-filled interiors. I spent many hours oggling the photographs of her home when I was writing a feature on her home for Reloved magazine last September and I’m sure that you too will find inspiration from these images.
Ju described finding her home as ‘love at first sight’. She told me how to property needed a lot of TLC but that it had bags of potential. “As soon as we had our offer accepted, I started the design process. I was just so excited that I couldn’t wait any longer! I wanted our home to look refreshing, gorgeous and original but it also had to be budget-friendly, without looking cheap” says Ju.
She learnt her practical skills during the process of decorating her own home. She studied YouTube videos and Pinterest tutorials to learn now to hang wallpaper, upcycle furniture, sew, upholster and paint. The only difficulty was living in the house while it was being decorated so the family had to move things around a lot, and Ju tackled the task room-by-room.
Upholstery is something that I’ve never really attempted myself but I’d love to give it a go. Ju told me that the upcycling project she’s most proud of in her home is the pair of vintage cocktail chairs in her living room: “I got them from eBay, and then I watched tutorials to learn how to reupholster them in vibrant fabrics from Designers Guild. There are a lot of free tutorials out there! Now, I too have a blog Blueberry Living where I share interior design tips and DIY tutorials. I feel like I’m returning the favour!”
I wasn’t at all surprised to see Ju hanging floral wallpaper in the first episode of Interior Design Masters, as her home is full of it! Just look at how vibrant her own home office is. With her love of tropical designs and vibrant colours it’s no wonder that Ju cites Mexican artist Frida Kahlo as one of her inspirations for her home.
“The office is my favourite space in the house” says Ju “It’s my sanctuary. I waited a long time for it and I just LOVE spending time in my study. It’s not just a place to work; I also get inspired by the colours and patterns. I love it so much that I even do my pilates in there every morning on the woven pink rug.”
JU’S TIPS FOR WORKING WITH COLOUR
- Always test the paint in the space, because the way it catches the light can completely transform how the colour looks.
- Start with two contrasting colours if you want to create a colourful scheme.
- You can make a space feel more intimate by bringing the walls forward if you paint them in a dark or bright colour.
- Or open up a space if by painting the room in a lighter, softer colour.
- Add little touches of yellow around your home to bring the sunshine in.
- With colour you can make ceilings appear higher, hide imperfections and create focal points.
- Colours have the power to evoke emotions and sensations so decide how you want the room to feel before choosing a colour.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this little behind-the-scenes blog post about Ju’s home and that you’ve been inspired by her use of colour and pattern to add some bold design elements to your own home. Let me know if you’ve been watching Interior Design Masters in the comments below and I’d love to hear how you’ve used colour in your own home too 🙂