Abigail Willis / Willis Bloom
More than just a fling, it's a true love affair
There is a reason why so many people have favoured the white box style of living for so long. It is classic, simple and ageless. But can you really love it? Does it stir a passion in you?
I’m sure it soothes the mind, creates calm with its simplicity, but a home without love and passion? No thank you. It doesn't do it for me.
My home is real: I live in a beautiful house full of beams, character and potential. It will never be 'finished', it will always evolve, there will always be space for childrens paintings, giant pine cones resting on the bookshelf triggering memories from a bike ride in France, a Christmas decoration left behind on the dresser, and there is always something on the bottom step of the stairs being ignored, walked past and needing to be upstairs. It will never be a white box and it will always be filled with colour, pattern, passion and love.
Part of the charm is how we arrived here. It's still work in progress and I have enjoyed every moment I've fantasised over paint charts and pored over fabric selections. I love my little swatch book that I keep note of my ideas in, tuck in colours and scraps of 'things I like'. I couldn't imagine doing this for a white box house. Would my book be empty?
Selecting your perfect shade of white paint is a bit like a trip to the dentist, necessary and sterile. But choosing a new wallpaper or fabric, oh the joy! Feeling the textures between your fingers. Choosing the colours, glorious large scale, delicate details, the wealth of patterns, playful or formal? And such a choice. So much to see, too much probably. But when you find the one, you know it. It appeals to your senses and you have to have it. It might not be the one you thought you wanted but since when did falling in love become a tick box exercise? Went it looking for soft blue and came out with deep red. Doesn’t matter, you’ll make it work, love can conquer.
Patterned wallpapers and fabrics are a commitment. They’re not a fling. They deserve to be in your life for a while. They will bring you drama and like all romances, will give joy, passion and excitement.
Don’t take my word for it. Wallpaper is here to stay, a backlash I’m sure to the sterile world of white, beige (it’s back) and grey. Great news, people are falling in love all over again.
My love advice? Don’t analyse it. Go with your heart, jump in. Don’t be scared of getting it wrong. Your home is a place to love and enjoy.
I love the Calla Lily fabric in this photo. The deep crimson red (a personal favourite), the soft linen, the simple tonal pattern featuring Calla Lilies, hand drawn into a timeless design. The photo is of me holding my wedding bouquet.
I created this fabric and wallpaper collection for people who want homes filled with charm, elegance and love. Not a fling but a full-blown romance.