5 Ways to be bolder with Colour, by Abigail Ahern

Abigail Ahern paint

An exclusive guest blog from designer Abigail Ahern on using colour.


I reckon I am pretty obsessed with colour. I have literally written the book on it, and I’m pretty evangelical about spreading the word! Why? Because it’s the quickest, cheapest, most transformative thing you can do to any space. Ever.

Colours are very personal. For me, the swampy, intense, dark, bottom-of-the-lake hues get my heart racing like nothing else. Madison Grey is my all-time favourite ever. But you might be into neon brights, chalky pastels or even white (not for me!), but just because it’s not my bag doesn’t mean it’s not fabulous. The trick is to surround yourself with colours that make you happy, the ones you gravitate towards, whatever they may be.

Although I’m always trying to tempt people over to the dark side and paint their whole houses out in Hudson Black, it’s really not for me to say! What I can do though is give you five instant ways to introduce colour to your pad. All of these can be done in a lazy Sunday afternoon… the ultimate facelift for your pad.


1. Go glossy: This is the new, grown-up glam version of the feature wall. Paint an area in the same hue as the rest of your walls, but go for a high-gloss finish. It’s a fab trick that I’ve used for ceilings a lot, particularly with chandeliers or pendants suspended beneath it. The light that bounces off is truly magical.

2. Paint a door: Doors are boring, I have a huge aversion to them. There are actually none in my pad now apart from the bedrooms and bathrooms. If yours are super dull how about painting them out in an unusual finish. Gold metallic anyone?

3. Metallic anything: Talking of metallics how about painting out a piece of furniture, kitchen cupboards, or alcoves…it will catch the light beautifully and you can change it in next to no time!

4. Come over to the dark side: Grab a brush, roll up your sleeves and forget about that stupid myth that dark colours make small rooms feel ‘smaller’. Seriously irritates the hell out of me that myth! Dark hues add intrigue, drama and mystery to a space.

5. Put down your paintbrush: Am I confusing you having told you to pick it up? If you can’t because you’re renting, add colour via your accessories instead. I’m talking big colourful art, throws, pillows, rugs, occasional chairs, and lamps. The world as they say is your oyster when it comes to colour!


View the Abigail Ahern paint range here, or visit Abigail Ahern's website here