Category Archives: Trends

10 Amazingly Cool Standing Lamps for Your Home

10 Amazingly Cool Standing Lamps | via thedesigntabloid.com

by Marica Fick

Ambient lighting – we find that it is often the last element people think of when decorating their homes and spaces. In some sad cases it is a vital element completely forgotten about.

This type of lighting can be used to create a warm glow and set an intimate mood in your room when the main lights are switched off.

Loose-standing and move-able lamps, like standing lamps, are a great way of incorporating mood lighting into your space. Floor lamps add a vertical dimension to your space while taking up very little valuable floor space.

While some standing lamps can be rather drab, unappealing, and purely functional, the right selection can be an excellent tool to add another decorative element to your room.

We did a little online search to see how many trendy, attention-grabbing local floor lamps we could find. Here is our roundup of ten amazingly cool standing lamps for your home…

10 Amazingly Cool Standing Lamps:

Umthi Hanging Lamp

Designed by Meyer von Wielligh, the massive Umthi Hanging Lamp (Umthi means “tree” in Xhosa), takes inspiration from nature with its elegant tree branch-like structure. This beautifully designed lamp was one of the nominees for the Most Beautiful Object In South Africa (MBOISA) in 2016.


Search Tripod

This trendy black tripod standing lamp will add an edgy contemporary feel to any space. Available from Weylandts


PULL Floor Lamp

The Muuto PULL floor lamp is a perfect example of classic and simple Nordic design. PULL has an adjustable shade that changes both the lamp’s light and its character. Available from Crema


Copper Wire Floor Lamp

White with a touch of warmth, this standing floor lamp is the perfect combination of trendy industrial cool and copper heat. With its nautical elements this lamp would also work in a coastal styled home. available from @home


Wire Shade & Base Floor Lamp

Want to make a quirky statement? Then this wire standing lamp is just the thing. Taking on the traditional shade and base shape of a lamp, it can be custom painted in any colour you desire. Imagine it in lipstick red or cool turquoise. Available from lim


Wood-like Floor Lamp

Bring a touch of industrial chic to your living space with this stylish standing lamp. We love the wood detailing complimented by the cool metal shade and base in a trendy sage green. Available online through Superbalist


Multi Task Floor Lamp

Add a big statement piece to your interior with this oversized brushed copper and black anglepoise floor lamp. Available from Weylandts


Architectural Floor Lamp

We love this quirky standing lamp with its wooden tripod legs and adjustable neck. We love it so much in fact that we have bought one in the past for a client’s coastal industrial home. Available through La Grange


Dipped Floor Lamp

It looks like this contemporary floor lamp with its wooden arm received a trendy “paint-dipped” effect. It would make for a beautiful accent piece next to a side table or sofa. Available online through Superbalist


Shelf Light

An original design by Cape Town based emerging creative Nawaaz Saldulker, the Shelf Light is a playful standing lamp that incorporates a small shelf to store or display small items. Perfectly blending form and function. Available online through shopscoop.co.za

Plascon Colour Forecast 2017

Plascon has once again unveiled their annual Colour Forecast as well as the official Plascon Colour of the Year 2017. As always, the Forecast has taken its inspiration from global colour trends and interpreted it into four themes or “colour stories” as Plascon has aptly named them. Each story takes the form of a colour palette and décor direction, encompassing not just what the theme looks like, but also the mood and energy evoked by each one. Below we share a quick overview of each scheme as taken from the forecast booklet

Colour Forecast 2017:

Plascon Colour Forecast 2017

colour story one: ANONYMOUS

Plascon Colour Forecast 2017Plascon Colour Forecast 2017

Seek simplicity with ANONYMOUS

light • simple • calm

This theme is a response to our busy live s. It’s about stripping back to basics and embracing the softer things in life.

This gender-neutral palette can work across all rooms and styles. Unsure of purple shades? Don’t be. Purple promotes creativity and innovation, making it an ideal colour for your social or work space.

colour story two: TERRAIN

Plascon Colour Forecast 2017Plascon Colour Forecast 2017

Be grounded by TERRAIN

rich • earthy • warm

Inspired by desert landscapes, this warm theme balances earthy, mineral and neutral colours in an easy-to-use palette.

The trick to using this colour story is to concentrate on greys and neutrals first to provide a subtle backdrop. Then use the other colours (such the punchy ‘Sunrise Glow’) sparingly to create an energetic accent.

colour story three: PRISM

Plascon Colour Forecast 2017Plascon Colour Forecast 2017

Explore possibilities with PRISM

youthful • bright • fun

Taking digital art as inspiration, this theme explores depth and layers in colour. It’s about having fun with colour and embracing bold design.

The secret to pulling off this bright palette is to only use a touch of the more vibrant tones. Contrast the deeper colours with the lighter ones for a fresh, contemporary feeling.

colour story four: PAUSE

plascon-colour-forecast-2017-1Plascon Colour Forecast 2017

Embrace neutrals with PAUSE

Minimalist • warm • lived-in

It may be minimal at heart but ‘PAUSE’ has maximum appeal. It’s perfect for everyone who loves a sophisticated neutral look.

To add a modern touch to your home, pair this colour story with a combination of metal fittings and bleached woods.

the 2017 colour of the year: IN THE MOOD

Plascon Colour of The Year 2017

Plascon also announced their chosen Colour of the Year for 2017. “IN THE MOOD” 06-E2-3 is a soft earthy neutral with a slight pink undertone. This is not surprising selection as pinky nude colours have been one of the most popular choices of fashion designers during the last year. Interesting to see how the interior trends evolves from the fashion industry.

Here is what Plascon had to say about their Colour of the Year 2017:

Taken from the TERRAIN colour story, this easy-to-use, earthy colour is anything but basic. It’s perfect background for any space and pairs beautifully with other colours.

The colour of the year is a neutral like no other. It’s beautifully complex in appearance and effortless calming in its nature.

What do you guys and gals think of Plascon’s 2017 Colour Forecast and the Colour of the Year?

The colour story that really appeals to me is “Pause” – it is so beautifully soft and feminine. Furthermore, I suspect that we here at Design Monarchy might be using colours from the “Prism” theme more than once as it contains punchy colours perfect for accent furniture pieces.

Check out the Plascon Trends website (here) for more Colour Forecast awesomeness and to take a peek through the online Forecast booklet…

10 Painted Ceilings That Pop

Are you in the mood to do something a little unusual with your space… a bit daring even?  Here is an atypical home trend you might want to try: painted ceilings. And no, I definitely DO NOT mean white – or off-white for that matter! I’m talking bold, bright, unapologetic colour!

Think about it. We decorate and colour-in our floors, walls and everything else, yet our ceilings remain a large unused stretch of open real-estate. Consider it as a fifth wall – another blank canvas to be painted.

Painted Ceilings (3)

Image Source: Justina Blakeney

Painting the Fifth Wall:

While a white-painted ceiling is the traditional and safe choice, it is also predictable and boring. It has been the norm for far too long! Giving your ceiling a fresh lick of paint is an unexpected and playful approach to add colour and interest to your interior without overwhelming the space.

It is said that a white ceiling appears higher and brighter, while a coloured ceiling appears lower. However, if the colour and application thereof is chosen with care it can actually make your ceiling look higher. It is therefore important to select the right colour and shade that will best suit en compliment your space.

Bright Painted Ceiling

Image Source: Magnus Anesund

Things to Keep in Mind When Painting Your Ceiling:

⊗  Height:  If you are brave enough to opt for a very bright or dark painted ceiling, you have to ensure that you have the appropriate ceiling height. The last thing you want is to feel claustrophobic. The ceiling should preferably be 2.7m or higher if you want to prevent the room from feeling like it is closing in on you.

⊗  Colour Balance:  If you choose to paint your ceiling in a coloured tone or darker shade, consider keeping your walls light or neutral to avoid colour overload. Light will cause the colour on your ceiling to reflect and bounce unto your walls. So, ideally one should pair a painted ceiling with white to create a beautiful contrast and a pleasing balance.

  Light:  Make sure your space has an abundance of natural light. Painting the ceiling of a dark room with little natural light will make it look like a cave.

Painted Ceilings (6)

Image Source: 47ParkAvenue

Different Painted Ceiling Configurations to Try:

⊗  The “Broad Brush”:  Walls and ceilings are painted the exact same colour. This seamless effect, where walls flow directly into ceiling without interruption, creates a sense of completion and a feeling that you are enveloped by colour. This works best with lighter shades and gentle hues.

⊗  The “One-Shade Darker”:  The ceiling is painted the same colour as the walls but one or two tones darker. This effect gives your room an almost ombré, paint chip / deck effect. Use light to light-medium tones.

⊗  The “Kickstand”:  The ceiling and a single wall is painted the same colour. This effect elevates the walls and ceiling by drawing the eye up the painted wall towards the ceiling. Here you can attempt a brighter colour for a playful and unusual room feature.

⊗  The “Ceiling with a Skirt”:  The ceiling and cornice is painted in the same colour. You can also extend the paint effect further downwards to create a broad skirt or band of colour all around the walls of your room. This effect adds a sense of snug intimacy and cosiness.

⊗  The “Contrast”:  The ceiling is painted in a bright or vivid pop of colour paired with white walls and mouldings to create a bold contrast.  Be warned – this option is not for the faint of heart.

10 Colourful Spaces That Will Make You Want To Paint Your Ceiling:

Painted Ceilings (4)

Image Source: Apartment Therapy

Painted Ceilings (1)

Image Source: BHG

Painted Ceilings (2)

Image Source: Lonny

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Image Source: Design Sponge

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Image Source: Coco Kelley

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Image Source: Hus & Hem

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Image Source: SG Style

Trend Alert: Factory Windows

By Marica

A few months ago in our post, Trend Alert: Black Metal, you might recall that I mentioned “Factory Windows” in passing. The particular post was about the widespread popularity and diverse use of “Black Metal” in interiors, homeware and fixtures.

At the time I felt that the revival and reappropriation of Factory Windows is currently such an amazing phenomenon and beautiful interior trend that it deserved a Trend Alert post of its own…

What is a Factory Window?

Let’s first establish what I mean by “Factory Window”. A Factory Window is a big steel-framed, multi-pane window that was often used in factories, industrial buildings and warehouses in the early to mid 19th century (and before).

These windows were popular for two rather practical reasons:

Firstly, the steel grid or “muntins” provided a solid structure to create a much larger window than was the norm of the time. Its size provided an abundance of natural light for the factory workers labouring inside.

Furthermore, small pane windows are not only more affordable to produce but also cheaper to replace. If one pane of glass breaks you only have to replace that one pane and not the entire window.

A Factory Window Revival:

While the resurgence of factory windows is definitely not a new trend – it has been circulating for a few years now – it seems that its popularity has reached a peak.

I cannot read an interior blog or browse through my Pinterest feed without seeing a dozen images of factory windows being used in (un)usual ways. I mean, what is an Industrial styled loft without a stunning (and appropriate) factory window?!

I believe it is precisely due to the eclipsing popularity and longevity of the Industrial interior style that factory windows are currently such a runaway success.

 Vintage vs Faux Factory Windows:

The “real deal” vintage steel factory windows would of course be first prize. Many salvage yards and second-hand dealers sell reclaimed building materials from refurbished or demolished buildings. Here in Cape Town for instance, one only has to drive down the Woodstock or Salt River main road to spot vintage windows and doors stacked up on various thrift shop sidewalks.

However, if you can’t manage to get your hands on reclaimed factory windows, there is no shame in “faking it”. Many homeowners and designers choose to have factory-like steel windows custom-made to fit their specific space and purpose. This can however be a costly exercise.

It is for that exact reason that many opt to recreate the factory window effect using wood. Once the window grid has been constructed from square pieces of timber and has been painted in the desired colour, no one will know the difference.

Factory Windows Used as Shower Doors & Screens:

We have spotted one more curious use for factory windows – this time in the bathroom. Instead of using the standard, manufacturer’s glass doors and screens one can use factory windows to enclose a shower. A similar effect can be created by using steel French windows and doors.

Bathrooms are excellent, yet often underutilised, spaces to create decorative features and focal points. Factory windows will add an interesting vintage industrial flavour to your bathroom.

Bright & Colourful Factory Windows:

While black is the colour one immediately associates with the Factory Window trend, it is not necessarily mutually exclusive. Yes, the contrast of inky black against stark white walls – particularly in a monochromatic Scandinavian type interior – is beautiful.

However, a white painted window frame can work just as well, especially if your space has a softer colour scheme or if you are trying to avoid a standout feature. Another popular choice is grey – be it a soft dove grey or a darker gunmetal grey or charcoal. Grey as a colour choice is very much in keeping with that of an Industrial Style colour palette without being as harsh as black.

If however you want to add a playful facet to your home, you can consider painting your factory windows in a bright colour. Sunny yellow and shades of blue are excellent options that will add a happy element to your space.

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