Welcome to the WILD ROOM
By Nicki Bamford-Bowes @andthentheywentwild
Paid partnership with Lick
Colour is an amazing phenomenon. It is around us all the time and influences everything we do and feel. I am passionate about the joy-giving power of colour, and that’s why I was so delighted to work with Lick, the ultimate decorating partner. Twice a year, I plan to use Lick’s carefully curated range of beautiful, sustainable paint colours to reinvent my workspace.
You may have seen my home studio on my Instagram grid. It’s an amazing place to work – peaceful, surrounded by greenery and its mine-all-mine! It’s also the ideal space to showcase how, with a slightly different edit of paint and some simple changes to accessories, you can achieve a whole new look and vibe. I’m calling it my Wild Room because it’s a place where I can have fun, experiment, and get under the skin of colour emotion too.
I want to show how you too can use colour to change not just how your home looks, but how it feels. For me, paint is magic. It’s so easy and inexpensive but it can completely transform a space and your mood and help to develop your design confidence.
As colour psychologist Karen Haller says, “Colour comes in through our eyes, but it makes its way into our hearts.”
And if you don’t like it? Simple! Just pick a different colour and switch it up again.
I want to encourage you to embrace your WILD SIDE! Just go for it and have fun with paint.
For my first transformation, I gave myself a very simple brief: to work with paint colours that made my heart go ping!
My workspace is somewhere I go to create and think, so I wanted it to feel inspiring and relaxing at the same time. When I’m designing for clients, I naturally flex with their style and taste to create a home that reflects THEM. Even when I decorate my own home, I obviously consider my family’s very different needs and design dreams, whether that’s my design-conscious husband, my growing teen and pre-teen boys, or my eight-year-old sparkle-crazed daughter. The joy of the WILD ROOM is that I can design very much with my heart for myself.
I started with a deep dive into Lick’s paint samples which are a great concept. Instead of hundreds of tester pots, each Lick sample comes as a generous square that you can stick to your wall without causing damage. This means you don’t have to commit to one shade or end up with patchwork walls! You can move the squares around to see how light affects your chosen colour and try them alongside existing curtains and soft furnishings. I fell in love with so many shades but ended up with five colours that I could not resist.
Lick Colour Palette Purple 03, a luxuriously deep rich burgundy, used on my table base and lampshade and for pops around the room.
Lick Colour Palette Red 03, a soft earthy terracotta, which I used to paint the ceiling and create the chequerboard effect on my cupboards alongside…
Lick Colour Palette Pink 02, a soft, sophisticated nude pink.
Lick Colour Palette Blue 03, a fresh, minty-toned blue, was perfect for my ribbed wooden wall panels.
Lick Colour Palette Teal 02, a richer more petrolly blue, was my pick for the base of the wall. It perfectly complements 03 and helps to anchor the whole look.
You might have spotted that these colours are similar to shades that I’ve used throughout my home. That’s because I love them so much. You might also wonder if that’s a lot of different colours together in one relatively small space. But I hope you agree that while the shades are bold, because they are chosen from the heart, they not only combine well, but the overall look is subtle, warm and relaxing. Zoning with paint also helps a home or even a smallish room like this feel bigger by creating intentional spaces for different purposes. I use this trick in my own house and in all my client projects.
Apart from the colour, the overarching theme to this look is incorporating graphic shapes through circles and squares and lines.
I designed the round tables I use as a desk, and this can easily be repainted. I also used Lick paint to create checkerboard painted doors on my Ikea cupboards (I love a grid!). These shapes are reflected in my new tubular vase and round deep red ceiling light. Angled stick tube lights on the cupboards also introduce a strong graphic note.
My home garden studio isn’t just for summer. When I’m working from home, especially at busy times, I can be here long into the evening. With winter on the way, I was keen to amp up the comfort and warmth. That meant introducing more soft furnishings such as cushions and curtain, luxurious fabrics and glowing lighting.
Lick is a sustainable brand. These days we are all thinking much more about the impact on the planet of everything we do. We want stylish interiors without compromising on sustainability and to reinvent our homes without it costing the earth. That’s where a company like Lick can help.
Lick paint is:
● Low VOC
● Free from animal testing
● Ocean-friendly. Lick removes 18g of plastic from the sea per tin of paint sold
Our studio is not a huge space but it is a very busy one, and it has a lot of purposes to fulfil. I used paint to zone areas for the different functions. The warm end is where all the hot thinking and planning goes on! The cool end is where the chilling, reading, researching and coffee drinking happens.
No inch left un@lick -ed
Building more storage for samples was a key part of the makeover – but the last thing I wanted was to look at boring cupboards. I painted this end of the studio with 3 different shades of @lick paint. The deep #Purple03 at the far end houses tonnes of hidden storage for all my samples and materials. The darker colour makes the storage recede and also provides the perfect backdrop for a more punchy graphic feature.
REUSE AND REINVENT
Repurposing is key to sustainability and as this was going to be a regular make-over it was at the forefront of the design intentions. An important part of my home office is the sofa that I use as a place to relax, think and read. It also doubles as an occasional bed when we have guests. To build longevity and versatility into the design, I found a company that makes beautiful bespoke covers that can transform and refresh the look over the seasons without having to buy new furniture. I also introduced inexpensive Ikea cupboards which I hacked using clever Lick paint effects and innovative lighting. These can easily be updated in the next design with a whole new paint effect. I was particularly happy with the tinted mirror glass inside the shelving alcove which adds glamour and sparkle and reflects the panelling painted cupboard doors, creating a wall of interest.
I worked with the current ribbed panelling that I installed three years ago made from mop-stick handles. Where previously I had worked with the natural wood, this time I decided to give it a new lease of life by painting it in using two tones of blue separated by a striking black moulding.
Any lights, rugs and accessories can in future be moved around my home, stored for when I fancy a different look, and then pulled out again and used in new ways.
My desk is one that I designed and made a few years ago. The base is made of offcuts of wall panelling and I commissioned the marble top from a local stone yard. The great thing about making my own furniture is that I don’t feel precious about repainting it, but even if your furniture is off-the-peg why not give painting it a go for a whole new look without hitting the shops?
MY IKEA HACKS
I’m always drawn to graphic shapes so when it came to hacking my Ikea storage, the checkerboard was my go-to pattern. It’s striking visually yet simple and looks great when I’m on a Zoom call.
Here’s how to get the look:
1. Lightly sand the furniture to key the surface.
2. Apply a base primer if you like Zinnser Bin. Lick is a self-priming paint so in most instances you won’t need one. Find out more here.
3. Apply the light PINK 02 all over with a roller. Leave to dry for 24 hours.
4. Using Lick tape mark out the nine-square grid on the doors before painting using the Lick roller. Check out my reel to see exactly how I did it.
I added rose-tinted mirror behind the open shelves section – but opted for acrylic instead of glass. This makes it lighter, easier and safer to use, but still incredibly effective. I ordered it from And it was delivered cut to size. You can affix it permanently with glue but I used Velcro tape so I could switch it out later on if I wanted to. The shelves also help keep it in place.
I can honestly say I have loved every second of working in my new space. To me, it's interesting, fun and full of joy. How my space makes me feel really does make a difference to my well-being and creativity. Work can be very busy and intense at times. I work long hours and spend a lot of time in my studio, but having a space that makes you smile really is everything. I look forward to coming here – which always makes work a pleasure. It keeps me excited and inspired, and I am surrounded by textures that tantalise and materials and books that keep me focused and get the creative brain flowing. The only problem now is I am enjoying the space so much I am not ready to re-paint it for the next makeover (well not just yet anyway!).
Every item in the studio has been carefully curated for its shape, materiality, and colour.
Bemz makes gorgeous, practical custom covers for Ikea furniture in the most delicious fabrics. These include cottons, linens, and recycled materials. I chose a rich dark blue velvet for my Vallentuna Sofa bed. All Bemz covers are machine washable and made to order in Europe.
I love the fun, spherical Nordic Velvet Ball Cushion in Terracotta from Yililo.
Because I sometimes host guests in my workspace, I needed black-out curtains for their comfort, and to make the room more inviting, especially when the nights draw in so fast. I found these soft pink curtains with a blackout lining at Home Essentials.
I love this light which captures the circles and square graphic theme within the overall concept. The sculptural circle is reflective of Crosby Studio’s trademark minimalist aesthetic.
Circle 03 by Crosby Studios, LED Neon Sign
This is a super-simple, super-stylish little metal and opal glass light that gives a warm, illuminating glow. Its minimal flush profile makes it a perfect choice for spaces with lower ceilings and the round shape was ideal for the graphic vibe of my design.
I chose the Descend Rug by Michelle Collins as it picks up the colours of soft blue-greens and light pinks in the studio colour palette and the graphic shapes of triangles and wiggles were the perfect graphic finishing touch!
Photography by Lol Johnson Photography