In conversation with Coral Atkinson, Founder of Velveteen Babies

In conversation with Coral Atkinson, Founder of Velveteen Babies

By Emma Bestley on

If you follow Coral on IG already, you’ll immediately associate her with colour. And not just one particular colour, but a vast array of pastels, solid hues and quite frankly, magic!

Coral is a mother of 3, with her own business to run and a home redecoration project to do. Her brand, Velveteen Babies, was founded in 2013 soon after she became a mother and after a career in the luxury retail industry.

She made it her mission to both source and produce playful, design-led products for her family with an aesthetic she knew everyone would love.
Soon after her brand was born, she and her family moved to the beautiful Yorkshire Dales in the U.K, creating a whole new life project: Redecorating the whole house while parenting three young children Felix, Barney and Willa.

YesColours talks to Coral about life, decorating and of course, colour. 

YC: Kids bedrooms: what are the “in” colours?
CA: I think for both genders there has been a move towards muted tones- soft pastels teamed with pale wood and cream rather than bright white, and beige/mustard and green-blues are definitely dominating at the moment.

YC: How would you create a kids bedroom? What design rules do you follow?
CA: It’s important to create a space that the kids love themselves (obviously) but that doesn’t feel overwhelming, so that it can be both playful and calm when needed.
I love a half- wall as it’s so easy to change up and it keeps the space feeling less intense, and a pale shade on the upper parts of a wall can be decorated with lots of lovely wall decor. I think the trick is to keep light flowing in, sometimes blinds can swallow up a window, so I sewed black out material into all the kids room curtains - lovely and light by day but cosy and dark for enhancing sleep time.
It’s great to create different zones, even in tiny kids rooms- little corners for playing and reading with a floor cushion, maximising space by using wall book shelves or crates to keep toys organised. There’s so many lovely storage solutions out there now that look great and are super functional.

YC: Where do you get your inspiration for velveteen babies?
CA: I’m forever mulling over ideas and adding new colourways, which then leads to other ideas! Looking on Instagram at what other parents are drawn to when decorating their kids' rooms, print designers and just about everything- even reading kids bedtime stories can spark an idea.

YC: What colour way sells the best for VB?
CA: Pastels, especially blush! My Springtime droplet garland is my bestseller- pinks, mustard, mint and greens with a hint of glitter, anything with blush in, it’s definitely the favourite.

YC: What’s your favourite of our edits?
CA: I love the Autumn and winter berries edit- there’s two colours in it that I’m planning for our new kitchen. I adore olive green and haven’t used it in this house… yet!!!

YC: What colour makes you the happiest?
CA: I love all colours because I’m greedy, but I am always drawn to green tones and a pop of pink.

YC: What got you into interiors?
CA: I did an interior design course when I was studying my A-levels a long time ago and I’ve never stopped loving it. I do wish I’d followed my heart and gone into it professionally when I was younger but back then nobody really knew what to do with ‘creative types’ and I ended up in high-end retail, but it did teach me a lot about visual merchandising and creating spaces even if it was in a different way!

"I love the Autumn and winter berries edit- there’s two colours in it that I’m planning for our new kitchen. I adore olive green and haven’t used it in this house… yet!"

YC: What’s your favourite room in your home and why?
I think it’s still Willa’s room as it’s always so light and gentle and pretty, it makes me want to be 5 again! However, we have a big renovation project this year and all the kids rooms will need complete redecoration so I’m looking forward to the next project!

YC: 3 words to describe you…
CA: Imaginative, hardworking, caring.


Do follow Coral at @coral.atkinson for all her renovation projects.