The decorative arts and interiors are life-enhancing . I am interested in the evolution of, and enduring legacy created by, our desire for beauty and utility in our lives and homes.
I write articles on
Things that inspire me in the Decorative Arts, Interiors, Fashion and Nature.
A little of what I Fancy: featured ‘home accessory’, you know that small-ish purchase that would cheer up your day/month.
Plus ca Change: (No change there then) the enduring grace of great design echoes down the line.
I worked in fashion in my 20′s. Looking back my favourite thing was ‘trend analysis’ I would produce seasonal reports on trends identifying our ‘fashion strategy’. I set up my own home fashion and interiors label, stockists included Liberty, Bon Marché, Brown Thomas, Neiman Marcus and ABC Carpet and Home. This led to contracts creating textile products for major UK retailers including BHS, Debenhams and Laura Ashley.
I became an interior designer, working with a wonderful American designer in London led me to a passion for refined interiors with an eccentric touch. My research led to an appreciation of the history of design, particularly the decorative arts in the long century: 1660-1830 and how this permanently influences interiors.
I READ ALOT.….whilst not out and about. Hence books.
David Collins in 1st Dibbs, ‘he has always set more store by how something feels than how it looks…emotions are what count. “I don’t always know what a place will look like, but I do know what it should feel like.”
Jonathan Adler in Lonny Magazine,”Learn your craft and hold to it. People think I am this wacky guy. If only I were wacky, of course my designs have a certain irreverence, but that is a whisper. Craft is where I live, craft conquers all.”
Kelly Wearstler interviewed in Design Sponge.
Q: How do you feel in the studio?
Christian Astuguevieille interviewed by Simon Trebay in the NY Times:
He is nostalgic for a time when the sense world seemed richer.
Handing a group of young students a sheet of white foolscap, he asked them to feel and crumple the paper and then describe the sensation, only to discover that they barely had words. “Children are increasingly so removed from the natural world that an entire vocabulary of the senses is in danger of being lost,” he said.
NOTE: he asked them to make up words if they couldn’t find appropriate vocabulary.
Nicholas Haslan interviewed on 1st Dibs: I firmly believe that the secret of a happy home is to listen to what the house is telling you. Listen carefully and you can hear it speaking. If you disobey what a house says, you will never get it right. I talk to houses and ask them questions…I really do believe that houses have souls.
Billy Baldwin‘s senses this too: If I were to build a house today, without question it would be contemporary. But if I fell in love with an old house I would enjoy the excitement of making it belong to me.
Mario Testino: My favourite words are possibilities, opportunities and curiousity. I think if you are curious you create opportunities, and then if you open the doors, you create possibilites. People close doors all the time, but I look at some pictures I take today and think they are so much better than pictures I took 10 years ago because I haven’t stopped growing, and I don’t ever want to stop growing.
Nicholas Haslam: My perfect room looks like someone actually lives in it – not a bland hotel space. Even if it’s entirely modern, it contains all the things that rooms over the centuries have contained – piles of books, candles, ashtrays, lamps, lampshades, objet d’art, bronzes, layers. And always, something pink and something ugly.
Madeleine Castaing: Making a house is creating. I make houses like other write poetry, make music of pain. A house is more of a likeness than a portrait…avoid reproduction, that easy and banal method. Don’t get taken in by fashion. A secret: love your house; love makes miracles.
Charlotte Moss: The most essential ingredient in any room… atmosphere. It’s the one thing you can’t buy. It’s not about the object it’s about the end result.
Oscar age 4 when asked what he wants for his birthday: Mummy I want it decorated. Mummy’s boy.