Get the look – Striped Rooms

Here at The Chromologist, we are big advocates of “the fifth wall” – or ceiling – as a place to include in your decorating plans. It might be the summer influence, but we’re also currently into stripes. Hence we felt thrills when we stumbled accross the work of designers Kim Haddou and Florent Dufourcq and in particular their reading room at Design Parade Toulon, a festival open until 30 September that’s dedicated to interior architecture. 10 young architects were tasked with creating various rooms based on the theme of a holiday home on the Mediterranean coast. Kim and Florent received the Grand Prix Van Clef and Arpels for their reading room, complete with its sunny striped ceiling and it’s got us spiralling into how stripes can be used more broadly to decorate a room. Beginning with their project, below are some tips and ideas we’ve gathered to explore the idea.

Stripes to give the illusion of a wider room

Image by Kim Haddou

Kim Haddou told us, “we decided to focus the project on typical mediterranean materials and architecture to give a really contextualized space. The library which is dug into the wall is an echo to ancient interiors in the mediterranean area. The stripes on the ceiling are evocative of sunshades and parasols that you can find along the French Riviera. We choose this color because we wanted to have a really light and sunny ceiling, which gives a soft and peaceful atmosphere. The room was really narrow, so of course the stripes helped us to give the illusion of a wider space.”

Stripes to make a focal point of windows

Interior design by Carlo Ninchi and Vittorio Locatelli, Oneroom London

Carlo Ninchi and Vittorio Locatelli from Oneroom London, were tasked with creating the interiors for this large apartment in an ancient building in the heart of the Brera district of Milan. Their clients were a couple of art and design collectors and Vittorio says, “You could call it a maximalist interior. Trying to interpret the passion for objects of the owners, we designed this urban flat like a space of composed contradictions, in which the bubbled armchairs of Gaetano Pesce can float on top of an ancient Aubusson carpet next to a rare Sottsass caffee table for Memphis. The walls are  painted with Farrow & Ball colours in a warm grey scale ranging from light cream to dark brown. All the fabrics for sofas, armchairs and curtains are Dedar, the two big carpets are an antique kilim Kirçil and a XVIII Century Aubusson.”
We say, thick stripes are a great way of adding bold pattern and if you save this sort of print for the windows, then all eyes settle towards them.

Stripes as detail – on furniture and as rugs

Image from Dedar

Italian fabric house Dedar is a mine of inspiration and on today’s theme didn’t disappoint. Regimen fabric in (colour 12) Strawberry Sorbet will turn most sofas, however ordinary, into swans. Try against yellow, green or brown for a dreamy colour combination.

We love the way the below imperfectly striped Labyrinth rug from Heal’s works along with the Dash cushion and Benjamin pendant lights to journey the eye around various rosy accents in this room. The half-height green paint also helps to frame the furniture and adds a very thick stripe effect to the backdrop.

Image from Heal’s

Stripes as the dominant decorating feature on your walls

Image from Farrow & Ball

Very simply, this is about sticking stripes all over your walls. Try one of Farrow & Ball’s wallpapers, such as Block Print Stripe (above and below) if you want a colour combination that the experts have come up with for you. Or if you want to take matters into your own hand, you could contemplate doing your own hand painted stripes in the paint colours of your choosing. See designer Rhonda Drakeford’s fabulously wonky hand drawn black stripes for inspiration.

Image from Farrow & Ball

Stripes on stripes – opposing colours and directions

Image from Farrow & Ball

Farrow & Ball’s Chromatic Stripe wallpaper comes in five different colourways designed, for the adventurous decorator, to mix or match (as seen above). The idea of taking the stripes in different directions adds playfulness to a room design. If working this look across full walls feels too daring, try painting a smaller chair or chest in stripes that run in the opposite direction – either in the same colours…

Image from Farrow & Ball

…or in contrasting shades.

Image from Farrow & Ball


Jill Macnair


Jill Macnair has worked as an interiors journalist for 13 years, contributing to titles including Elle Decoration, The Sunday Times and The Guardian. She set up cult interiors blog My Friend’s House in 2009 with Ros Anderson and continues to run the forum daily.

The Chromologist 2019 | Farrow & Ball

The Chromologist