House Rules judge Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen talks wallpaper ahead of grand final

Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen.
Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen.

HOUSE Rules judge Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen loves the direction Australian home design is heading and not just because he has his own wallpaper business launched with Graham and Brown.

“I think Australians are really beginning to get the message that colour makes a massive difference in a room,” Llewelyn-Bowen said.

“It changes a room, but being able to put a pattern on to the wall knocks that room into a completely different place. Colour is like flavour and will make your mouth water and give you a little bit of emotion, but you need colour and pattern to properly stimulate the intellect and sensibilities.”

Based in London with his wife and business partner Jackie, their two daughters and one grandson, Llewelyn-Bowen has made a name for himself with Aussie audiences of the Channel 7 renovation program during the past two seasons.

His time spent in the country has given him a new outlook on Australian houses.

“I’ve seen them everywhere from Coober Pedy to Cairns to Adelaide, Perth and Fremantle,” he said.

“The funny thing is that there’s an innate problem with Australian houses which I think everyone outside of Australia is probably surprised about. The reality of an Australian interior is that it’s actually quite dark because of the way houses are built with awnings, verandas, patios and carports, which is so important in the outside space.

“It means that the interiors themselves actually don’t get an enormous amount of sunlight. So the modernist theory to decorate for that is to keep everything light and neutral and it doesn’t work.

“Most of the time you have a view of your neighbour’s fence, so if you’re not looking out of your windows you have to start looking at your walls. Make your walls into windows and give your walls a reason to be looked at. That’s where wallpaper comes in to it.”

House Rules 2018 grand finalists will be announced on July 24 with the grand final screening July 30.