Review by Emma Rafter https://twitter.com/yumptatious
This marvellous book takes me right back to my school and uni days, when my room was not just where I slept but a haven of inspiration and self expression. As we get older, and especially if we share our spaces with loved ones, we invariably compromise on our decorative choices, either through economy or a perceived notion of what a 'grown up's home should look like, possibly leading to a homogenised enviroment. What we should be doing, and what this book seeks to remind us, is to start creating individual places that reflect our individual joys, passions and memories.
'Creative Walls' isn't prescriptive but is suggestive: for example, I don't think I'll be embracing strategically-placed taxidermy (which crops up when you least expect it) any time soon, but I do like the idea of grouping framed pictures (art, photos, ephemera) and found objects together under a unifying theme.
There is scope here for everyone and their home, whether you are an avid collector of the 'pre-loved' in a random-yet-heartfelt manner, or if your acquisitions are a little more measured, approaching the blank wall with a finely-tuned plan. Within this delicious book are plenty of ideas to kick-start some seriously creative fun. But it's not just about pictures and artfully-placed stuffed alligators: author Geraldine James (not the actor) illustrates how the strategic positioning of one or many mirrors can exaggerate available light and space, as well as adding another dimension to colours and textures.
She also shows the power of taking objects out of context, repurposing them for both practical and aesthetic sensibilities. Colour is also examined, in particular, the unifying power of monochrome.
It is time to go 'old skool', echoing in principal the use of a school display, or 'freeze', not as colourful backdrop that lasts all term, but as an ever-changing source of inspiration, adapting to suit the needs of the individual class.
Decoration does not need to be static for years on end: a more organic method of home decoration can roll with the constant ebb and flo of life: just add your imagination! If nothing else, this book should give you the confidence to shun perceived ideas of taste and style, enabling you to follow your own quirky heart in order to create a home that truly feeds the soul.
Published by Chico Books