The loud and proud matchy-matchy look is this year's boldest interiors trend

Give rooms a cosy, cocooning and confident effect by decorating multiple surfaces in the same daring pattern

matching interiors
At one with her surroundings: Victoria Cator in her South Kensington home, with walls and sofa in Soane’s raspberry-red Lotus Palmette pattern (the dress is a near match) Credit: Nilufar 2015

When supermodel Kate Moss decided to redecorate her guest bedroom last year with the help of interiors brand House of Hackney, she didn’t choose tastefully coordinated fabrics and wallpapers. Instead, the walls and the velvet curtains were swathed in a matching bamboo print, creating a cocooning effect that made the dark, heavy pattern all the more alluring.

A strictly matched interior scheme – where the headboard might match the walls, the sofa and the curtains – breaks modern decorating rules. More usually, you might show off your creative mettle by jumbling ­everything together, and somehow making it look artlessly harmonious. By comparison, the all-over-matching trend feels not only a bit ­Kate-Moss-rock-’n’-roll-rebellious, but also easy to pull off – although it still takes confidence and know-how.

“Go all out,” says Lulu Lytle, founder of interior design company Soane. “I’m a great proponent of covering all surfaces of a room – walls, ceilings and upholstery – in matching wallpaper and fabric to feel enveloped in the most cosseting way.”

Soane's matching prints are item to make a space feel cosy Credit: Soane

Lytle’s own flat includes many ­examples of matching walls and window treatments. Paintings, antiques and other curios overlay this envelope of pattern: they somehow balance out the busyness.

Soane’s fabrics and wallpapers are not just influential on their own, but also in the bold manner Lytle chooses to style them, in the showroom and for marketing campaigns. Interior designers and homeowners have taken the idea and run with it. The Wing, a US chain of women-only co-working spaces that recently opened a London outpost in Fitzrovia, features a hair and beauty salon where the chairs and walls are wrapped in Soane’s Persian Flower and Paisley Stripe designs, with sherbet-orange niches and a mirrored ceiling. It’s brave and modern despite the historical origins of the pattern, which was inspired by a 19th-century Persian textile.

A pattern emerges: women’s co-working space and members’ club The Wing in London Credit: Tory Williams

Victoria Cator, pictured above, who runs an eponymously named fragrance company, saw Soane’s raspberry-red Lotus Palmette fabric and wallpaper in the window of its Pimlico showroom and decided to emulate the same style in the study of her South Kensington home, with her walls matching her upholstery. “It makes a statement, but it works – it’s too bold a wallpaper to put a nice cream sofa in front of,” she says – so, in this case, having a matching sofa makes it melt into the background.

One might think that the room would divide opinion, but Cator has had nothing but favourable feedback. “People are very drawn to that room,” she says. “Some say it’s got a clubby feel to it – it’s cosy and comfortable. That wallpaper is just incredibly inviting.” She adds that she thinks it works so well because, despite the dark tones and all the pattern, there’s also lots of daylight in the room, entering via a large skylight.

“It’s quite French,” says Cator of the historical origins of the matching look. “That whole toile period in the mid-18th century, where the walls would be covered in fabric, as well as the half-tester.” There are echoes of Middle Eastern culture in this decorating style, in the prints themselves, inspired by textiles from Persia and Turkey, as well as the way that pattern is used across the ceiling too, an echo of the tented rooms of nomadic tribes.

For the ultimate theatrical take on matching interiors, look to Tony Duquette. The US creative director for stage and screen also designed some midcentury interiors that have much in common with his eccentric stage-sets. You can even stay in one of his LA ­masterpieces, thanks to upmarket homestay agency Onefinestay, and take your pick from a red-and-white bedroom where the only thing that isn’t in the aforementioned colours is a leopard skin rug on the floor; or a blue-and-white bedroom that’s like living inside a Japanese willow-pattern plate.

Tangled up In blue: stay in a masterfully matched Los Angeles house designed by Tony Duquette, courtesy of Onefinestay Credit: Onefinestay

While there are plenty of examples of outlandish matching interiors, this is a style that has appeal for those with more sober tastes, too. In the bedroom of a town house in Chelsea, interior designer Irene Gunter matched fabric blinds to the wallpaper, not as a way to make a bigger statement, but to achieve the opposite.

“My client had fallen in love with the wallpaper, but there was a beautiful garden beyond the window and I wanted to attract the eye to that view,” she says. “If the blind had been in a plain fabric, it would have stared you in the face.”

Gunter describes schemes with all-over pattern or colour as “a room that wraps around you and gives you a hug”. Pattern doesn’t have to be a feature either: for a living room project, she has played with the same tone of soothing grey-blue, across the fabric-wrapped walls and furniture. This is difficult to accomplish, partly because exact matches of colour are tricky.

“When you have contrasting ­colours, everything is much more forgiving; it’s meant to be contradictory,” she says. The process of finding a matching blue for the furniture and walls was “quite painful, but worth it”, she adds. “The trick is to ensure it has the same undertone – some blues are greenish, some are pink, some are yellow or grey. Different fabrics are never going to look exactly the same, because they have a different saturation and depth of colour; but if the ­undertone is compatible, you’re not going to walk in and your eye immediately picks up that something’s off.”

BlInd faIth: Irene Gunter, of Gunter Interiors, used a blind to match the walls, to draw the eye outside toapretty garden Credit: Mark Bolton Photography

Matching interiors are definitely making their way to the mainstream when designer Claire Wilks, of furniture retailer Sofa.com, says: “We are seeing a lot of customers seek out paint or wallpaper in a similar colour to their sofa and soft furnishings, for a striking yet balanced look.”

When it comes to paint, the trend for anything-but-white for skirtings and architraves continues, which can be matched to wall paint or wallpaper. Lucy St George, co-founder of Rockett St George, says: “While traditionally your floors, ceiling and ­furnishings might all be different ­colours, we’re seeing a rise in daring colour confidence throughout our favourite interiors, with the walls, doors, windows, skirting boards and floors all in the same bold tone.”

Nadia McCowan Hill, the resident style adviser at online retailer Wayfair, has advice on styling such rooms. “By not demarcating any particular feature, the whole room becomes one seamless space, giving statement lighting and furniture the chance to stand out and shine,” she says.

Smaller rooms can especially benefit from the all-over-colour ­approach, says Judy Smith, colour consultant for Crown Paints. “Don’t just think about the walls. Painting radiators and woodwork, including stair risers, window frames and spindles, creates a seamless look and the illusion of a bigger space,” she says.

So whether you just dip your toe in this trend by painting your skirting to match your walls, or go all-out on a pattern-on-pattern frenzy, just make sure you’ve got everything covered.