Now you see it, now you don't tv room
Medieval Hall House, Kent (my home)
When we moved into Sparks Hall all our belongings fitted easily into one room. And that’s where they stayed while we spent every spare minute of our lives scrubbing, filling, sanding, painting and planning. Six years later and I’m pretty proud of what we’ve achieved. I wanted an elegant contemporary home that’s sympathetic to its crazily ancient origins (pre Henry VIII). It’s light and bright in places and dark and moody in others. And even with the introduction of two little girls and all their clobber, it’s still a decidedly stylish and comfortable place to live. And it’s all been achieved on a tight budget.
Photos: David Merewether, Amy Scarife, Sandra Higgison
Wimbledon Man Cave
This no holds barred project was huge fun to work on. Another of the one day HSBC mortgage adverts, this time the challenge was to turn an unloved garden shed into an office/music room/man cave in 24 hours. Andy’s guitar collection and love of iconic musicians sparked a rock star vibe, with charcoal walls, a huge Lennon print and punches of colour taken from his favourite album covers. Little touches like the ON AIR lightbox were hand made to bring the project in on budget.
One day, one nursery - make it great. That was the gauntlet laid down by HSBC for their one day mortgage advert on the Huffington Post. Effie, age 2, was the lucky recipient and her parents informed me that she’s a fan of Scandinavian style. The room was small but tall, so I used lots of features to draw the eye upwards and create extra storage. A munchkin sized teepee and a sky full of pompoms and fairy lights were all a big hit with Effie.
House Boat Living/Dining Room Hampton Court
An incredibly picturesque setting, Taggs Island in the Thames was the site for my second Great Interior Design Challenge. Philippa’s living room was crying out for storage and needed zoning to define the different activities all happening in one room. She likes feminine colours and fabrics, and is a lover of french neoclassical interiors. I selected a pale green grey (Slaked Lime from Little Greene) reminiscent of faded french interiors and paired it with a pretty floral fabric. Philippa was delighted with the end result.
East London Living/Dining Room
This beautiful victorian house in the Jesus Hospital Estate in East London was my first project in the Great Interior Design Challenge on BBC2. The owner, Ben, is a totally cool cookie. He has lots of amazing eclectic, personal items that needed pulling together and showing off. “Light and bright” read his brief, but this was a TV show, and I wanted to win. So I coaxed him into taking the plunge with dark grey walls (Scree from Little Greene) to really make his artwork and furniture pop. Afterwards he confessed he had originally thought he’d be getting the decorators in the next week, but after the paint went on, he was hooked!