I'm not sure when throws became popular in interiors but I can't remember a time without them. However it has really been the last few years that we have seen such a wide range of throws on the market. When I accessorise a room, I am focusing on introducing layers to the scheme and this is why a simple throw is such an important element. I like to use throws in my home to bring in a touch of colour but most importantly a layer of texture. They look great and are practical too. I've got some inspiration here to show you why this simple element is a must have in your next decorating project.
Introducing texture with a throw
Texture is such an important element in a decorating scheme that is often overlooked. Look through Pinterest and you will see so many rooms that are very neutral and one dimensional in terms of colour. All white spaces are very much on trend and can look fantastic. But if you look at the rooms with predominantly one colour that are more successful than others, it will always be the rooms that have layers and layers of texture.
For example, a neutral linen sofa with a chunky woolen throw will look far more appealing than one which just has a throw in a similar flat thread linen. A room with a generous rug that is heavily textured is also great with plain linen sofas. This is why we see so many natural floor rugs in hemp and sisal with natural linen. The juxtaposition of the two different textures adds interest to the scheme, which is really important if you are sticking to one simple white or neutral.
Cushions are another way to bring in some different textures, and used together with throws, a simple plain sofa gets a great facelift and there may not be a different colour in sight – just a jumble of textures.
Related: 7 tips to style a living room
Adding a splash of colour with a throw
If you love a simple colour scheme but like to use it as a backdrop to introduce colour, then adding a throw is the perfect opportunity to achieve this. I always recommend avoiding a spotty look when you are introducing colour into a room. Sometimes you see a very neutral space with just one colour added in various areas – perhaps cushions, a throw, a lampshade and a bowl. The eye doesn't know where to land upon and the look can be disjointed.
Therefore when you are introducing colour into a neutral space, either use one colour very judiciously or better still, put together a palette that has some related colours. For example, if you love blues, use some different tones of blue and perhaps a touch of green or a touch of lilac to produce a more organic look. Remember, everything doesn't have to match perfectly. Find pieces that you love and put them together to see the effect.
There are three different types of blue in the room above and this works better than if they all matched exactly. With the greenery in the room, this is a gorgeous related colour scheme that is enough to just offset these neutrals perfectly. The soft pale blue on the walls in the room below, with the range of blues and greens in the styling works really well, with the throw being slightly more grey. This is a classic related colour scheme.
Complementary colours are meant to work together in an 80/20 ratio. For example, orange is the complementary colour to a mid-blue. So if you have some various related blues, you could also add a touch of orange into the colour palette. This doesn't have to be bright orange, it could be a gorgeous terracotta bowl.
In the room above it is the warm terracotta and brown tones that are dominant with just a touch of charcoal blue. The throw in this room is more neutral and provides texture rather than more colour.
A throw is also a great way to help dress a bed. Either some added texture or some colour works really well to provide another layer when finishing a scheme for a bedroom.
The practicality of a throw
How many people have children and pets who love the sofa as much as you do? A couple of large throws, which will will add texture and/or colour, are also great to cover a sofa to protect it!
The real reason to have a throw of course is to add warmth when you need it and there is nothing nicer than to snuggle under a warm throw in the winter and watch TV. I also love to use throws in outdoor rooms too. When the suns sets and there is a touch of coolness in the air, it's great to be able to reach for a comforting throw to put around your shoulders. Your guests will be most grateful too!
I'm writing this as we're getting well into Autumn and the rain is pouring down outside. This is the time of year when throws really do come into their own. Have you heard about Hygge? Hygge is not something that will be out of fashion soon, this is simply a better way to live day to day and translates into all facets of Danish living. In terms of interiors, Hygge means comfort, style, good lighting and rooms that are conducive to relaxation. I won't say more now but I have written a post dedicated to Hygge and the humble throw is one of the most important elements.
Related: How to Hygge in your home
If you are planning a room makeover, you should download my free e-book on how to put a mood board together. This will help you to get the look right before you purchase items. You can sign up to my FREE Resource Library here.