New Year can be a wonderful time for a fresh start, and after the Christmas Decorations are all packed away, our homes can feel a little lacking in comparison. As much as many of us want to embrace the current trend for minimal interiors, at this time of year what we crave is cosy comfort; an oasis from the cold and grey outside.

We thought we would share with you one of our favourite ways to find inspiration and ideas in the wonderful world of Pinterest.

It used to be that pouring over and cutting out inspirational French Style Furniture, new wallpapers and grand French bedrooms to delight from the pages of Living Etc and Elle Deco was our primary source of inspiration. That and our ever-growing collection of Ryland Peters & Small Interior editions. But now we have the whole of the internet at our disposal, including our favourite virtual pinboard! The benefits of Pinterest are that not only can we find content to keep us going, we can also save our favourites to nicely organised boards, just like you would a real pinboard.

It might help to think of Pinterest as a refined, visual google. Instead of shopping for products, you can shop for inspiration on Pinterest with one beautifully styled and curated image after another.

Here are our top tips to make the most of this wonderful platform.

Once you have signed up for an account and gone through your basic interests, it is time to have some fun! It is far too easy to get lost in the rabbit hole and taken on an adventure, so it is well worth defining what you are looking for beforehand. An excellent way to break this down is to create a different ‘board’ for each room in your home. Write a list to have in front of you to keep you on track. You can always have another ‘board’ called ‘home inspiration’ for all those shots you love, but can’t immediately place. 

Instead of scrolling through the images Pinterest has found for you, head for the search bar at the top and start with the room in your house, you are designing. Include a couple of descriptive words that match your style, something like ‘master bedroom French style cosy’ or ‘guest French bedroom shabby chic’ and hit return.

Searching for gold

If you can’t see a page of photos that are all of interest to you, you need to refine your search terms and once you have, scroll down until you find your perfect image. When you have found special something, you have two options; you can hover over the image and when the save button comes up, click on that, and press the plus button to title your board from your list and Pin your first image. Or, if you click on the image, you can enlarge, still ‘Pin’ it, but underneath, you will find more similar images that Pinterest thinks you will like. If there is one that takes your fancy, pin that too and either carry on where you are, check out the similar images to your new Pin or go back to the search bar, and start a new search.

The more you ‘Pin’, the more Pinterest will know your style and be better at sending you relevant images. The more you get distracted by other things, the less refined this process will be. This way, the next time you come back to Pinterest, lots of beautiful shots will meet you.

Once you have your boards all in place, you can focus on the French furniture and accessories to complete the look. Think about all the elements you need: for instance, a Master bedroom will have the centrepiece: A fabulous French Style Bed, a perfect pair of luxurious French bedside tables - complete with complimentary bedside lamps. You can store clothes than need to be hung on hangers in French armoires or French style wardrobes; folded clothes storage in chests of drawers and maybe a luxury dressing table and stool? Then you add comfort with a French bedroom chair and warm rugs. A French-style Mirror and art for the walls to decorate and then the luxury bedding, pretty cushions and quilted bedspreads to cosy up the bed.

You can write a list of all the parts you need, using the photos of the rooms you have pinned. In the same way you would prepare for a dinner party by researching recipes, and writing a shopping list; before you order anything. You want the perfect mix of ingredients to create the home of your dreams.

Type what you would like to source as you did before, remembering those descriptive words. ‘French style painted armoire’ will give you far more tailored images than ‘white wardrobe’.

The more the merrier

If you have friends on Pinterest, you can send them messages, Pins and even ask them to collaborate on a board with you. Alternatively, you can always send a pin to an email address, on social media or via WhatsApp: whenever you see the ‘arrow in a tray’ button.

If you use Google Chrome to surf the internet, it is worth going to the Chrome Web Store and add a ‘Pinterest Save Button’, follow the instructions to add this free extension. Once installed anytime you are on any website, and you see something you like, you can hover over the image, and a red ‘Save’ button should appear. You can then add the image to any of your existing boards - or create a new one.

If it is all feeling like a little much or you can find what you are looking for, you can always start with us and our plethora of French Style Bedrooms and accessories - don’t forget to say Hello!