Turn your pad into a palace with decor picks inspired by the flamboyant and fabulous interior design from Elle Fanning’s comedy-drama, The Great.
In these uninspiring times, it’ll take something really special to catch your attention and lift you out of the lockdown fog. You know, something that’s thrilling, that’s full of joy and visual splendour. Something like, well, The Great.
Starring Elle Fanning and NicholasHoult, this comedic anti-romance transports us to 18th-century Russia to watch the “occasionally true” story of how Catherine the Great pushed her (pretty awful) husband out of the way to become the country’s ruler.
From character’s eccentric behaviour to the outlandish fashion, The Great is brilliantly bizarre. At any moment you might bear witness to Hoult draped in his mother’s pearls, skirt and frothy-necked white shirt, while the next he’ll be shooting a dancing bear as Fanning pets it – for absolutely no reason.
But our favourite maximalist part of the show? The decor. There are lots of visual delights throughout the 10-part drama, but inside the Emperor’s palace are some fabulous examples of more is more.
Think thick, tasselled curtains in jewel colours alongside monochrome chequered flooring and baroque home accessories. Plus, more candles than you can shake a crown at.
So, to celebrate The Great’s migration to Channel 4, we’ve picked out seven ways to create a modern twist on 18th-century Russian opulence in your own home.
With a new candelabra here and a glimmering light fitting there, we reckon your space will soon feel imbued with the beauty and drama of Catherine the Great’s court.
Graham and Green yellow flock candelabra
If there’s one thing you take from The Great, let it be the candelabra game.
We know dinner candles are having a moment right now but have you been showing yours off to their best ability?
A gold-gilded beauty like this one from Graham and Green is giving us real royalty vibes. Besides, there’s no such thing as ‘too much’, right?
Shop yellow flock candelabra at Graham and Green, £49
Not Another Bill secret book case
Being an avid bookworm, deep thinker and the only woman in the Russian palace who can read, Catherine the Great spends a lot of her time in the library which is filled with dusty, old books.
The books in the show have an antique aesthetic with beautiful hardback covers. While you could go hunting for something similar in a bookshop (post-lockdown, of course), these secret book cases provide some nifty storage, too.
Not only will they add some character to your shelves or coffee table, but they can be opened up to keep trinkets inside.
Shop secret book case at Not Another Bill, £27
Notonthehighstreet wicker deer head wall hanging
One of the first things Fanning’s character sees as she enters the palace is a collection of taxidermy mounted high on one of the palace walls.
While real taxidermy isn’t our thing, you can recreate the grandeur that is associated with it and give the look a modern touch with a wall hanging like this one.
It is crafted from wicker in a neutral tone and ready to slot into any decor set-up.
Shop wicker deer head wall hanging at Notonthehighstreet, £65
Anthropologie Mindra curtain
Long, jewel-toned curtains are a big feature in the boudoirs of Russian royalty. Well, according to this show anyway.
As if this look wasn’t sumptuous enough, we’ve also spotted some exquisite tassel detail, particularly on the curtains hung up in Catherine’s room.
Anthropologie does a gorgeous spin on this idea called the Mindra curtain which is made from cotton in deep navy blue with playful mauve tassels.
Shop Mindra curtain at Anthropologie, from £88
Sweet Pea and Willow Humbug teacup and saucer
Love The Great but can’t commit to a decor re-haul right now? This striking teacup could be your way to nod to the trend, without leaning in too heavily.
Not only does it mimic the monochrome flooring which runs throughout the palace, it has a flamboyant flair that is sure to make teatime more fun.
Shop Humbug teacup and saucer at Sweet Pea and Willow, £17.95
Selfridges Your London Florist bouquet
We’ve noticed that to give flower arrangements some extra pizazz, the set of The Great is often decoration with vases full of blooms and feathers.
The fluffy texture and height certainly provide a certain je nais se quois, which is nodded to in this bouquet from Your London Florist.
Shop Your London Florist bouquet at Selfridges, £95
La Maison Chic cut glass chandelier
What would a royal-themed interior design round-up be without a chandelier?
This one has a cream base and is made with shallow cut glass for a sparkling effect which will have your pad feeling like a palace in no time.
Shop cut glass chandelier at La Maison Chic, £218
Images: Channel 4 / courtesy of brands
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