We recently enjoyed the longest day of the year, known as the summer solstice. Usually this would be celebrated by many flocking to Stonehenge, a monument that aligns to the midsummer sunrise and the midwinter sunset. On the summer solstice, the sun rises behind the Heel Stone, the ancient entrance to the Stone Circle. Rays of sunlight are channelled into the centre of the monument, inspiring some to dance the night away. This year, there may not have been celebrations at Stonehenge but I did notice a marked difference in the length of day, as the golden rays of sunshine continued long into the evening.
This got us thinking about how we harness light or the lack of it in design. Not all of our rooms are blessed with large windows and sometimes we have to play a few tricks to conjure or control light.
Where light is abundant, we have installed Crittall windows, the uniform glass and steel squares add texture and let the light flood in. There is something elegantly masculine about these windows, they have a structural charm.
In room 1106 at Crosby Street Hotel, the surrounding scheme absorbs the generous light from the Crittall windows, creating a warm glow across the room.
The sunlight picks out the soft golden tones on the embroidered fabric on the headboard and sofa, complemented by the amber coloured walls.
In the bedroom, the Brunschwig & Fils ‘Sevenoaks’ fabric on the curtains adds an element of freshness with its bold, rich green tone.
In contrast, room 1006 at Crosby Street Hotel harnesses cooler tones with a Nina Campbell fabric on the walls, reflecting light around the room. Strong green and blue hues dominate the scheme, creating a fresh and serene light.
When we need to conjure a little light or create the appearance of light, we tend to add tall white, wooden shutters. This accentuates the light and gives the illusion of a full length window.
In this room at Haymarket Hotel, we have added curtains over the top to make the space more luxurious.
Floor lamps are equally as important, the height and glow of light in the corner of the room makes a charming place to stop and read.
Finally the introduction of a mirror is a clever way to cast light around a space, adding a large circular or a full-length Julian Chichester Brighton mirror to a darker room will capture and reflect the light.
While the days are long, let’s celebrate the light in whichever form it comes, stay up late and enjoy these long evenings!