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JUNE 2015

H O M E S ❋ D E CO R AT I N G ❋ G A R D E N S ❋ A N T I Q U E S & V I N TAG E ❋ R E N OVAT I O N

Summer AT HOME

From a lakeside haven to a gardener's paradise




quirky outdoor buildings

Beautiful bedrooms

The latest buys for a stylish retreat

PLUS Gardens, craft, shopping and more



Creative ideas using this classic pattern


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Editor’s Letter


Many years ago, I wrote a newspaper article about a young woman who lived in a forest in Scotland in a small gypsy caravan decorated in lace and clad in floral wheelie bin covers, and her boyfriend (well, they seemed close), who lived in a yurt in a nearby tree… This is a true story, but SUBSCRIBE even then I pondered how practical the living to Period Living and save 30% off arrangements were – where was the loo? What the cover price. about security? How pleasant could it possibly be See page 134 during a cold, unforgiving Scottish winter? They both obviously loved being there – at one with nature, birds and insects etc. The images we took did portray an idyll, if a slightly bonkers one! However, the appeal of an unusual garden retreat, an escape from the stresses of life and somewhere to run and hide when it all gets too much, seems to be increasingly popular – and if you have the cash to spend, then Readers can gain 2for1 entry to the sky is the limit. In our Quirky Outdoor Rooms feature (page the Salvo Fair 2015 (see page 129), we round up our favourite 10, from a traditional gypsy caravan 137) on Saturday 27 or Sunday 28 June, by showing this page. to a truly spectacular tree house, which, personally, I would move Voucher to be used once only into with a roll or two of decorative wheelie bin covers! for two people, when one person Talking of beautiful structures, this month sees the launch of pays the full price of £9 our annual quest to find inspirational period properties. The Readers’ Homes Awards is your chance to showcase your home in Period Living. Turn to page 43 to find out how.

2 for 1



CLOCKWISE FROM TOP RIGHT Live the high life in a treetop hideaway, page 129; charming needle felt creations, page 9; shop French-style accessories, page 24; our guide to the best bedroom furniture, page 119; get the look of our reader’s lakeside home, page 55 JUNE 2015 3

H O M E S ❋ D E CO R AT I N G ❋ G A R D E N S ❋ A N T I Q U E S & V I N TAG E ❋ R E N OVAT I O N

The Team

EDITORIAL Content Director Michael Holmes Editor Rachel Watson Content Editor Rachel Crow Homes Content Editor Karen Darlow Content Producer Pippa Blenkinsop Email EDITORIAL PRODUCTION Content Production Editor Melanie Griffiths Senior Art Editor Billy Peel Art Editor Michelle Cookson Chief Content Sub Editor Lucinda Neal Content Sub Editor Emily Hawkes Contributions by Karen Lawson and Emily Smith SUBSCRIPTIONS & MARKETING Head of Marketing Melanie Graham 01527 834452 Group Marketing Manager Eve Mulvaney 01527 834445 Direct Marketing Manager Anjuman Tariq 01527 834493 Marketing Designer Karen Lawson Senior Marketing Executive Helen Troth 01527 834483 Marketing Executive Vicki Lees 01527 834409 Subscriptions Manager Alex Worthington 01527 834435 Customer Services Jayne Everton 01527 834484 ADVERTISING Group Advertising Director Gill Grimshaw 01527 834427 Display Advertising Executive Grace Palmer 01527 834415 Classified Advertising Manager Emma Farrington 020 7970 4421 / 01527 834445 MAGAZINE AND WEB PRODUCTION Head of Production Bill Griffiths 01527 834421 iPad & Print Production Manager Charlotte Dearn 01527 834463 Online Production Manager Tom Burbridge Email Production Manager David Lloyd Production Admin Assistant Alice Sullivan PERIODLIVING.CO.UK Digital Sales Director Jackie Sanders 01527 834426 Digital Sales Manager Lucinda Clarke 01527 834404 Digital Sales Executive Elena Gill 01527 834494 Interim Digital Sales Executive Adam Connelly 01527 834471 Directory Sales Executive Simone Adams 01527 834481 Head of Digital Gill Dawson Web Services Manager Alison Nash Web Services Technician Laura Sturgess Senior Web Editor Lindsey Davis Homes Editor (Digital) Kathleen Spriggs-Bush Social Media Editor Sarah Handley PUBLISHING AND EXHIBITIONS MANAGEMENT Managing Director Steve Newbold Commercial and Events Director Nick Noble PA to Managing Director Zoe Beeston 01527 834477


Period Living is published monthly by Centaur Home Interest Media, a division of Centaur Holdings plc, Wells Point, 79 Wells Street, London W1T 3QN. Although every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of material published in Period Living, the publishers can accept no responsibility for the veracity of claims made by contributors, manufacturers or advertisers. Although Period Living has endeavoured to ensure that all information inside the magazine is correct, prices and details may be subject to change. No guarantee can be made of the safe return of unsolicited text or photographs. Letters may be adapted at the discretion of the editor. Copyright for all materials published in Period Living remains with the publishers and nothing in this magazine may be reproduced, in whole or in part, without the written permission of the publishers. Designed using Apple computers. Printed by the Wyndeham Group. Distributed by Marketforce. Period Living ©2015 is published monthly. ISSN 0958-1987.


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JUNE 2015 ISSUE 301

H O M E S ❋ D E CO R AT I N G ❋ G A R D E N S ❋ A N T I Q U E S & V I N TAG E ❋ R E N OVAT I O N


Readers’ HOMES AWARDS 2015



From a lakeside haven to a gardener's paradise


Cover photograph JOANNA HENDERSON

JUNE 2015



quirky outdoor buildings

Beautiful bedrooms

The latest buys for a stylish retreat


Gardens, craft, shopping and more



Creative ideas using this classic pattern











The latest and most stylish interiors offerings for a period home, chosen by the editor


Embrace British summertime with our selection of homeware inspired by strawberries and cream, plus invest in stylish seating for your garden

Cheerful checks

Be inspired by these creative ways to decorate with fabrics, wallpapers and accessories in this timeless country-classic pattern


56 Happy returns

Amy and Philip Matthews updated a Grade II-listed Georgian house and filled it with antique pieces to create a stylish yet practical family home

64 A perfect canvas

Artist Harriet Hildick-Smith’s Queen Anne house offered the ideal opportunity for her to express her creative flair

72 Labour of love

Retro furniture, car-boot-sale finds and quirky artworks all mingle in Helen Pritchard and Ian Pomfret’s eclectic home

Past to present

New happenings, views and events in the antiques, vintage and art worlds

23 The cool, calm collector

Marc Allum offers a glimpse into the world of French auction houses, plus shop for Gallic-inspired pieces

162 My vintage world

Sarah Kingston, co-founder of Goose Home & Garden, shares her love for handmade pieces from the past

6 JUNE 2015

The lake house

Brimming with vintage country charm, Linda Kilburn’s idyllic waterside summerhouse offers a versatile living space, perfect for both working and socialising


On the grapevine

Garden news, products and advice

Island paradise

Susan and Noel Dobbs have created a blissful cottage garden that complements their period home as well as satisfying their love of plants and produce



33 26

16 FEATURES 26 Homecoming journey

From her remote home studio in the North York Moors, Sara Jane Murray turns wartime maps into beautiful homeware that tells a story of the past


Readers’ Homes Awards 2015

Would you like to share your own home with other Period Living readers and win a fantastic prize? Discover how to enter our prestigious annual awards scheme

93 The art of colour

Katherine Sorrell delves into the history of this fascinating topic and offers advice in setting a palette for your home

99 Interior free spirit

Emily Henson provides inspiration and ideas on how to create a colourful and eclectic Bohemian Modern interior

107 Out & about

Explore Blenheim Palace, childhood home of Winston Churchill and the Duke of Marlborough’s country seat


Family kitchens

We share key considerations and style inspiration for creating a hub of the home that is practical and sociable

119 129

How to create the perfect bedroom

Stylish furniture and fittings for creating a relaxing retreat

Quirky outdoor rooms

10 of the best enchanting structures for your garden

RENOVATION & PROPERTY 113 Property know-how

The latest news, products for your home and expert advice

137 Reclaim & reuse

We trawl for treasure at the salvage yards

139 Repair or replace?

Douglas Kent offers expert advice on the action to take when faced with damaged metal railings and gates

140 Restoring exterior timbers

We look at how to renovate weathered external beams

REGULARS 134 Subscription offer

Save over £1 per issue when you buy a year’s subscription

145 Stockists

Where to find all the products featured in this issue JUNE 2015 7


June shortlist

The editor’s pick of the latest and most stylish interior offerings, from new designer fabrics, wallpapers and furniture to quirky handmade treasures


Ripe, juicy strawberries are the epitome of British summertime, conjuring up images of afternoon tea on the lawn and pretty cottage gardens. Update your kitchen with curtains or blinds made from Sanderson’s Summer Strawberries cotton fabric, £47 per m. From the Vintage II collection, it’s designed to replicate an original block print from 1963. ( JUNE 2015 9

NEW DESIGNERS Graduate Collection is a homeware and luxury lifestyle company working with some of the most exciting new designers to emerge from university. Highlights include this vibrant Lemur wallpaper (below), £125 per roll, from the Exotic Fusion collection by Laura Allen. With a degree in textiles and surface design from Cleveland College of Art & Design, Laura was inspired to create the collection after visiting New York’s Bronx Zoo. (0845 872 4919;

From the archive

Rosehip (above) is inspired by a tile design attributed to either William Morris or William De Morgan. Priced £49 per metre from Morris & Co, the pattern is handprinted on a gorgeous linen-blend fabric from handcut lino, to give an authentic block-printed look. The fabric is available in six rich shades and is part of the new Archive III range, which brings together faithful reproductions of classic fabrics alongside new designs inspired by Morris’ ceramic tiles. (0844 543 9500;

Inspired by the Morris & Co archive prints? Visit Red House in Bexleyheath, London – an architectural gem that was commissioned, created and lived in by Arts and Crafts designer William Morris, and is now in the care of the National Trust. Adults £8 (


Enamel kitchenware has a nostalgic retro charm that looks equally at home in a vintage-themed kitchen or on display in a classic country dresser. This lovely sage-green range from Dexam is a fresh take on a classic design. Made from highquality steel to ensure that it is both durable and chip-resistant, it can be used on any hob and is also oven- and dishwashersafe. Clockwise from top left: frying pan, £19; bellied milk pan, £10.50; classic Turkish coffee pot, £9; woodware cookbook stand, £30; woodware kitchen towel holder, £10; plate, £12; coffee pot, £19; large measuring jug, £15; espresso mug, £5; mug, £7; small measuring jug, £4. (01730 811811;

10 JUNE 2015

Delicate dinnerware The new Charming Bluebells fine bone-china dining range from Maxwell & Williams mixes vintage shapes with an exquisite design. The natural translucence of the china gives a luminous quality, which, combined with the soft blue floral motif, creates a lace-like appearance. From £4.95 for a 12.5cm coupe bowl. (020 8201 4888;


Global influence Mixing striking patterns with dark wood, John Lewis’ Fusion range is inspired by tribal designs from around the world. Flores king-size bed in grey, £999; Indah duvet cover set in Saffron, from £40. (

Cocktail hour

James Bond ordered his first martini in the 1953 novel Casino Royale, and the Martini armchair from Atkin & Thyme takes its cue from that decade. Upholstered in Sycamore Green velvet with a solid mango wood frame, it offers the ultimate in indulgence, H94xW82x D90cm, £395. (0844 409 9834;

Talent spot

Tracey Benton from Benton’s Menagerie

All Tracey’s creations, such as this leaping hare, £140, and blue tit, £95, are available to order online, but she also welcomes commissions (

‘It’s like alchemy, but the fluffy sort,’ is how designer-maker Tracey Benton describes the process of needle felting that she uses to create her menagerie of miniature animal sculptures, which range from leaping hares to sleeping badgers and garden birds. Tracey studied ceramics for many years, but, following her first encounter with felting, was immediately hooked. Using a humble ball of British pure wool roving – plus plenty of skill, imagination and patience – Tracey sculpts every piece by hand with a special barbed needle that binds the fibres together, sometimes using a wire armature to imply movement. Once the creatures have taken shape, she adds finishing touches using embroidery and beads, and, drawing on her previous training, mounts them on handmade ceramic bases. Living and working in north Devon, Tracey is never short of natural inspiration, but she prefers to interpret rather than replicate, injecting each piece with her own quirky charm. ‘I’d describe my creations as three-dimensional illustrations designed to make people smile,’ she says. JUNE 2015 11



Jasmine Nealon, showroom manager at Lewis & Wood’s Chelsea Harbour store, shares the latest wallpapers WHAT’S NEW AT LEWIS & WOOD THIS SEASON? This is a very exciting time for Lewis & Wood. Not only have we doubled the size of our showroom at the Design Centre at Chelsea Harbour, to create a wallpaper studio, but we are also launching a bespoke service, which will offer customers the chance to have their choice of background colours on selected wide-width wallpapers, as well as the opportunity to commission individual colours and scale up some designs. Matt finishes are very popular, but if you are looking for a touch of glamour, then we are also offering the option of having designs printed on special metallic mica paper to bring a sparkling sheen effect to your walls. With 90 colourways across 15 designs, there is plenty to choose from already, but the new bespoke service offers even more for a really individual look. DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE DESIGN? I love our classic Adam’s Eden wide-width wallpaper, which has been hugely successful over the years and is timeless in its appeal, but the new wallpapers (far right), such as Alhambra (right) and Petra, both designed by the decorative muralist Flora Roberts, are going to be huge hits, too. Inspired by ornate Spanish and Jordanian designs, and available in beautiful colourways, they will put the wow factor into any room.

LEFT Alhambra wide-width wallpaper, £56.40 per m, Lewis & Wood (01453 878517;


Delicately handcrafted by Indonesian artisans, this limited-edition Tukang cabinet, £845 from Puji, combines beauty and function. The storage unit has a distressed, antiquestyle finish with handpainted flower details, creating a charming shabby-chic look that will add a focal point to any room. Inside there are two drawers and four shelves, providing ample space for useful items, paperwork and other household paraphernalia. (020 8886 3000;

12 JUNE 2015

Web watch Museums aren’t just for interesting days out – they are also unique places to shop. The Natural History Museum website offers a fantastic range of home accessories, such as this pretty bone-china seahorse cereal bowl, £15, created for the Neptune collection to coincide with the recent exhibition, Coral Reefs: Secret Cities of the Sea. (020 7942 5494;


From 8 June to 16 August, London’s Burlington House will host the Royal Academy of Arts’ Summer Exhibition, running since 1769. Works in a variety of mediums by new and established artists will be on display. Adults £12 (


&cream Strawberries

Mini Labo Strawberry wallpaper, £65 per roll, Wall-Library

Celebrate summertime and the tradition of Wimbledon fortnight with this selection of homeware inspired by the iconic British fruit

RHS Strawberry cotton apron, £16, Ulster Weavers

Wild Strawberry bone-china teapot, £100, Wedgwood Strawberries and Cream candle, 140g, £32, Urban Apothecary Strawberry-print glass storage jar, £6, At Home with Ashley Thomas for Debenhams


Culinary Concepts silver-plated brass strawberry toast rack, £44.95, John Lewis

Strawberries and Cherries 5 cotton fabric, £9.95 per m, Laughing Hedgehog

For suppliers’ details, turn to stockists page

Strawberry linen handprinted cushion, £68.50, Annabel James JUNE 2015 15


lıvıng Alfresco

Enjoy the longer, warmer days and update your outside space with the latest garden furniture

Lyra lounge set in green, including two H93.5xW67.5xD65cm chairs and H41xDia.50cm table, £399, Made

Botanical hammock, H196xDia.94cm, £318, Sweetpea & Willow

Easthampton rattan double daybed, H88xW174xD168cm, £1,495, Oka Ornate painted iron garden bench, H94xW131x D46cm, £198, Miafleur


Royal Blue lounge chair, H95xW63x D65cm, £89, Out & Out Original

Tropical floral deckchair, H97x W60xD102cm, £69, Marks & Spencer

16 JUNE 2015

For suppliers’ details, turn to stockists page

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Antiques & Vintage

Past to present

News from the antiques, vintage and art worlds, exhibitions and fairs to visit this month, plus tales from the auction rooms


Tate Britain

Must-see exhibition

Vibrant lithographs from the 1940s and 1950s are on display at the National Trust’s Mottisfont, a Hampshire country house created from a 13th-century priory, until 5 July. Lyons Teashop Lithographs: Bringing Colour to Postwar Britain features artworks by LS Lowry, Edward Bawden and John Piper, among others, commissioned by J Lyons & Co for its tea shops following the end of World War II. Entry to house and gallery: adult, £11.80; child, £5.85; family, £29.25. Open daily, 11am–5pm. (01794 340757;

The first London retrospective for 50 years of the work of Barbara Hepworth, Sculpture for a Modern World will be at Tate Britain from 24 June to 25 October. It will showcase over 70 of her works, alongside archival photos of her studio and rarely seen textiles, drawings and collages. Entry £18; under-12s free. Open daily, 10am– 6pm. (020 7887 8888; TOP RIGHT Barbara Hepworth’s Curved Form (Delphi), 1955, will be one of many sculptures highlighting the work of this leading figure of the 1930s international modern art scene


Marc Allum BBC Antiques Roadshow specialist

I love metamorphic furniture, and throughout history there have been some intriguing solutions for multi-use and space-saving pieces. One of my favourites not only saves space, but also performs an extremely useful function – it hides all the office clutter. This folding teak work station is a mid-century classic, and provides a tidy answer for those who like to live without the melee of office paperwork on view, particularly in a spatially challenging, compact flat or house. Designed in 1928 by Swiss company Mummenthaler & Meier, these ‘office in a box’ desks were

copied by many other manufacturers. The design above dates from the 1950s/ 1960s and would sell for around £400 to £600 at auction, which makes it a stylish and cost-effective storage solution for the modern urban dweller. ABOVE Hide away office papers and put work out of mind with the help of this retro piece JUNE 2015 19

Treasure trove

Skirlaugh’s Garden & Aquatic Centre, near Hull in Yorkshire, houses an Aladdin’s cave of cabinets filled with goodies from 82 dealers. You will find a wide variety, from teddy bears and dolls’ houses, Dinky and Corgi toys, to reclaimed fireplaces, kitchenalia, soft furnishings and breweriana galore. So, whether you are in search of one-off preloved furniture, home décor and collectibles – even plants or fish – drop by this unique one-stop shop. (01964 562413; vintagehome

Fresh Air, 12th Biennale Quenington Sculpture Exhibition, 14 June–5 July Quenington Old Rectory, Cirencester, Gloucestershire GL7 5BN (01285 750358; This show of contemporary outdoor sculpture is set out in a five-acre garden surrounding the Grade II-listed Old Rectory. Admission: £5. Open 10am–5pm. Ardingly International Antiques & Collectors Fair, 23–24 June The Showground, Selsfield Road, Ardingly, Haywards Heath, West Sussex RH17 6TL ( With up to 1,700 stalls, spread between outdoor pitches and large furniture marquees, you’ll

20 JUNE 2015

This British factory light, c.1930, was salvaged from a Pirelli Tyres warehouse, and is paired with an early German street lighting bracket. H53xW40.5xD112cm, £480, Skinflint Design. (01326 565227;

Easy listening

Tune in to your favourite classics with this old Sunrise-design Bush radio, which is still in working order. H34xW24xD19cm, it costs £45 from the Cobbled Yard. (020 8809 5286;

find a full spectrum of antiques, collectibles, architectural salvage and furniture. Admission: £20, Tuesday 9am–5pm; £5, Wednesday 8am–4pm. Masterpiece London, 25 June–1 July South Grounds, The Royal Hospital Chelsea, Chelsea Embankment, near Sloane Square, London SW3 4LW ( More than 150 leading galleries worldwide will be offering for sale museum-quality art, antiques and design. The works span over 3,000 years of art history, from antiquity to the present day. Admission: £25 for one day; £42 unlimited access. See website (above) for detailed opening times. AUCTION HIGHLIGHTS Specialist Clocks & Related Items, 4–5 June Gardiner Houlgate Auction Rooms, Bath (01225 812912; European & Oriental Ceramics & Glass, 23 June Capes Dunn, The Auction Galleries, Manchester (0161 273 1911; Period Design, 26 June Jacobs & Hunt, Petersfield, Hampshire (01730 233933;


Westpoint Antiques and Collectors Fair, 6–7 June Devon County Showground, Exeter, Devon EX5 1DJ (01584 873634; With up to 400 stands, large and small, the Westpoint fair features a mix of dealers from all over the UK, and especially the West Country. Admission: £10, early entry Saturday 8.30–10am; £5, Saturday and Sunday 10am–5pm.

Industrial origin




Antiques & Vintage MY GREAT DISCOVERY

Spencer Swaffer


Owner of Spencer Swaffer Antiques, Arundel, West Sussex (spencers

What is your favourite find? Tell most people that my greatest discovery was a scarecrow and they’d call for the men in white coats! But I will never forget this extraordinary elm-headed man – part Easter Island figure, part Picasso, pure English folkart masterpiece. When I found him, he hadn’t left the same Suffolk farm in 200 years. Careful cleaning of him revealed soulful eyes painted with true love. What object do you wish you had kept? A remarkable 15th-century limestone bishop; headless, and worn down by 600 years of Mediterranean weather, he retained a jaunty presence. You could still make out the detail of lace brocade etched into his vestments. He would have stood high on an ancient cathedral. He’s now standing in the sun overlooking San Francisco, a star in a private collection I’ve helped to amass over some years. ge eor G f all ro pai ood w A r iltw AT: nne WH rved g he ma ndale a e t III c ors in Chipp 015 2 r s r mi ma March 00 o h 0 of T N: 11 : £25,

ABOVE This stone bishop would once have looked down from on high RIGHT For 200 years, a Suffolk farm was home to this old, characterful scarecrow

E E 0 WH IMAT 0 ,50 0 T 0 8 S E 35,0 R: £ m , to £ D FO remiu hams n p L SO ding M: Bo eet, lu inc EROO nd Str o L SA 1SR wB 1S Ne 101 on W 447; 7 d Lon 7447 m) 0 co (02 ams. h bon


Olympia International Arts & Antiques Fair, 18–28 June

Celebrating its 43rd year, the Olympia International Art and Antiques Fair, 18–28 June, presents an extraordinary selection of vetted art, antiques, furniture and collectors’ pieces. The fair brings together 170 of the world’s leading specialist dealers – offering items from antiquity to the present day, with prices ranging from the affordable £100 to the aspirational £1million. There is also an informative programme of speakers (see for details). To win one of five pairs of tickets (worth £15 each), enter at; deadline for entries is 28 May 2015. JUNE 2015 21

The Cool, Calm Collector

French bidding


Antiques Roadshow specialist Marc Allum goes on a foreign foray into the French auction world

uctions can be excruciatingly boring. The monotony of a humourless auctioneer slowly working his or her way through hundreds of uninspiring lots in a freezing cold saleroom – the only respite being the steamy backroom café dishing up soggy bacon sandwiches on cheap white bread – is not a scenario to be relished. Yet, to be honest, this is part of the inescapable anti-charm of the auction house: the dogs wandering around, the eclectic characters that regularly frequent certain rooms and the odd bit of excitement as the adrenalin kicks in for the rapid joust-like qualities of the bid. Frankly, this was exactly what the saleroom was like when I was a young auctioneer. It was my dog that wandered around, sitting on the laps of her favourite clients. It was our café that sold soggy bacon sandwiches on cheap white bread; funny how they always seemed to hit the spot. But I was the auctioneer, so – in my mind – there was no monotony; after all, I was running the show!

‘With at least 120 lots an hour, I was proud of my sale rate, all executed with a purposeful whack of my favourite gavel’

Photograph MARC ALLUM

RIGHT Marc brought down the gavel on hundreds of closing bids an hour in his days as an auctioneer, but things are, he discovered, a little slower across the Channel. Alongside the quaint, if not medieval, tradition of vente à la bougie, where candles are lit during the bidding process, French auctions are still regulated by Napoleonic law

With at least 120 lots an hour, I was proud of my sale rate, all executed with a purposeful and commanding whack of my favourite gavel, steadfast in my judicial resolve to instantly settle disputes from my pulpit of house-clearance power. Yet, I don’t miss those days. Now self-employed, I find myself buying rather than selling; time management is the main issue and, despite the three per cent extra it costs me, I consider online bidding ergonomically convenient. No more sitting for hours on Polyprop chairs or begging for telephone bids on tempting ‘come-buy-me’ low-estimate lots – such are the idiosyncrasies of some auction house rules. Don’t get me wrong; I love the viewing and the thrill of the chase, but not the wait. Yet, if you find some aspects of the English auction system a tad difficult, try going to a French vente aux enchères. Salute the commissaire-priseur! No, it’s not the title of a high-ranking official in the clandestine state security machine of a former Soviet satellite state. It’s French for auctioneer. Perhaps things are different in Paris, but the more parochial Gallic rooms have a pre-revolutionary way of doing things that seem to defy all common sense. Mon dieu! How can I forget the time that I waited four hours for Lot 19 to arrive, because at the house sale I attended, lots were sold by room, not in the order they were numbered. Merde! The family of the deceased unexpectedly arrive to announce that the dodgy local notaire neglected to notify them about the sale of their relative’s valuable art collection; he also ‘accidentally’ forgot to advertise it. What a cauchemar, I thought, as my anticipatory excitement turned to dust and I realised why there were only five people in the room! And drôle, how the badtempered owner of a small-town auction would scream at clients while amalgamating successively unsold lots into bigger, even less-saleable collections of immovable dross, then haughtily abandon the sale in preference for a three-hour lunch, and this, just as the only lot I wanted was coming up. Add to this the hugely over-manned rostrum of bureaucratic-looking officials scuttling off to collect a cheque from every buyer for every transaction, each surrounded by a sea of the ubiquitous French rubber stamps – the minimum needed for any aspect of commerce regulated by Napoleonic law – and you have the recipe for a kind of auction purgatory. A limbo land of bidding hell (or Hell’s bidding), which makes an English saleroom look like paradise on Earth. Give me a bacon butty any day!

Buy French-style items JUNE 2015 23

Antiques & Vintage




FROM TOP TO BOTTOM Reproduced from designs of fin-de-siècle wrought-iron French furniture, this Rivoli chair has a seat made from metal plates for a soft bounce, €163.20 (around £117), Catriona McLean; store cutlery in this antique-style zinc caddy, H15xDia.14.5cm, £16, Dibor; this Jazz table lamp with ceramic shade, H47xDia.26cm, is handcrafted by artisans across the Channel, £159, La Maison Bleue.

FROM TOP TO BOTTOM From the Le Verrier foundry in France, this 1920s dancing Hoop Girl is a spelter cast, H30cm, £480, Nouveau Deco Arts; celebrate viticulture with this antique ormolu French Empire clock (number 4783), H42.5xW26xD9cm, from Gavin Douglas Fine Antiques, £3,250; take a seat on this French Art Deco walnut armchair with original 1930s cut velour, H76xW60xD62cm, £375, Tryst d’Amour.

FROM TOP TO BOTTOM Inspired by Louis XV styles and made from mahogany, Flavie is a fun bedside table, H76xW76xD42cm, £425, Out There Interiors; by French design company Guy Degrenne, the Salam six-cup teapot incorporates a tea infuser and insulating cover, £95, Fortnum & Mason; the Albertine linen toile is based on 18th-century French archive documents, £74 per m, Borderline Fabrics.

24 JUNE 2015

For suppliers’ details, turn to stockists page


Gallic chic

From Rococo to Art Deco, be charmed by the French style of these accessories

Homecoming JOURNEY Inspired by her chance discovery at a vintage fair of silk escape and evasion maps, used by servicemen during World War II, Sara Jane Murray retells their story through the medium of craft Words RACHEL CROW Photographs JEREMY PHILLIPS


intage silk maps spill out from the drawers of an old haberdasher’s cabinet in Sara Jane Murray’s home work space. Some are yellowed with age, water-stained, bearing marks or tears of use; others remain as pristine as the day they were folded and packaged in the 1940s. Lining shelves, or hidden in cupboards, her handmade lampshades, cushions, bunting, notebooks and other wares are covered with remnants of these beautiful and intricately detailed examples of a cartographer’s art – the terrains they depict, foreign and unfamiliar. ‘I love rummaging at flea fairs and junk shops, and spotted a piece of silk, printed with a map, on a market stall three years ago. I had no idea what it was, but I have travelled widely and love maps and globes and the way they are drawn;

I find them really evocative,’ says Sara Jane. ‘It was only when I did a little research, however, that I realised what I had bought.’ What she had thought was an old, damaged scarf, was in fact a small yet emotive piece of wartime history: an escape and evasion map that would have been used by a pilot or member of the Special Forces during World War II if they found themselves shot down or captured behind enemy lines. This fragment of material would have helped to lead them back home or to safety. The maps’ heritage is a true Boy’s Own tale of British eccentricity, cunning and invention. They were the brainchild of Christopher Clayton Hutton – the genius behind many escape aids – an officer with secret government department MI9. Having obtained map publisher Bartholomew’s agreement to waive all copyrights to the map data in support

The Artisan

The summerhouse was built in two stages and cost around ÂŁ21,000. The decking overhangs the man-made lake, to which more than 200 small fish have been added, attracting the occasional hungry heron or otter

OPPOSITE Sara Jane lives in the beautifully rugged landscape of the North York Moors, and enjoys views out to the Dales. This evocative scenery has inspired her to develop her craft in new directions CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT A map fragment is attached to heatproof backing in the crafting of a lampshade; many of the lampshades Sara Jane makes are bespoke; her home, and studio, is a converted stone barn in a peaceful pocket of Yorkshire farmland; covered notebooks and sketchbooks are priced from ÂŁ22 each JUNE 2015 27

‘I had the idea of a boathouse, complete with a rowing boat that I could pile up with cushions and lie in’

‘I discovered that some army regiments still had stocks of these maps in store. I couldn’t bear the thought of them being lost’ ABOVE Bartholomew’s agreed to supply MI9 officer Christopher Clayton Hutton with maps of Italy, Germany, France, Poland, Austria, Switzerland, the Balkans, Belgium and Holland for his escape and evasion inventions ABOVE RIGHT This cushion bears a map printed just after World War II and shows parts of eastern England and Germany, as well as the zones that Germany was split into after the war – cushions cost from £90 RIGHT Sara Jane sews many of her pieces for Home Front Vintage by machine or hand

28 JUNE 2015

The Artisan

of the war effort, Clayton Hutton found a way to print the maps onto durable yet discreet silk. These were then sewn into the lining of uniforms, hidden in the hollowed out heel of a boot, or concealed elsewhere. ‘He became a little obsessed with coming up with many ingenious ways to hide the pieces,’ says Sara Jane. ‘He had dummy pipes made, which could be smoked but had a secret compartment inside for storing the maps; sections of the rolled-up fabric also replaced lead in pencils – chewed and used ones donated by schools so as to look authentic.’ Clayton Hutton also collaborated with games company Waddington’s to conceal them in Monopoly boards sent by fictitious charities to captured Allied servicemen in Prisoner of War camps in Nazi-occupied Europe, along with magnetised tokens that could act as compasses.

LEFT, TOP TO BOTTOM The drawers of a vintage haberdasher’s cabinet are filled with silk maps, while on top sits one of Sara Jane’s framed new artworks made from various fragments; ‘I always had a passion for crafting and making things,’ she says; greetings cards, £6, come with a removable lapel badge in the shape of a Spitfire or Lancaster plane, and can be personalised for occasions such as birthdays or Father’s Day


‘I had never heard of these wartime inventions, despite having trained as a military officer at Sandhurst, but I was fascinated by the story,’ Sara Jane continues. ‘I discovered that some army regiments still had stocks of these maps in store that were damaged or simply unwanted. I couldn’t bear the thought of them being lost, so I bought a large supply; I had no idea, though, of what I was going to do with them.’ At the time, Sara Jane was living in Kent, working in palliative care with patients suffering from motor neurone disease, and in her spare time enjoyed crafting and making as a therapeutic antidote to her demanding job. ‘I started Home Front Vintage while still working full-time, spending my evenings and weekends reworking the maps into homeware and accessories, including cushions, lampshades, pendants, buttons and brooches, which I sold at fairs, online and through some museum shops. It was important to me to help to keep the history of the maps alive,’ she explains. Then last year, she and her husband Patrick, a paramedic, made a life-changing move to North Yorkshire. They now live in a converted stone barn on a working farm, surrounded by the beautiful, wild and rugged landscape of the Moors, with their own six-acre bluebell woodland to manage. ‘We saw the house while we were on holiday and fell in love with it straight away. We bought it on a bit of a whim, as we had no jobs organised here, but we decided that we wanted to live a cleaner, more self-sufficient life,’ she says. ‘It is an incredibly inspiring environment.’ The move also prompted Sara Jane to focus on her crafting business full-time. ‘Moving here has been quite emotional,’ she explains. ‘I am from East Yorkshire originally, but this has felt like coming home, and the maps are all about JUNE 2015 29

RIGHT This vintage mannequin is dressed with a scarf made from a map, £65. ‘Home Front Vintage combines my military background with my love of crafting and travel,’ says Sara Jane BELOW RIGHT She incorporates other war memorabilia into her pieces, such as these badges. ‘Many towns raised money to buy Spitfires during the war, and sold these brooches as part of fundraising efforts.’ These are seen alongside magnetised razor blades, which could be used as a compass, developed as another escape and evasion aid

people finding their way home, too. That has inspired me to interpret the fabrics in different ways, so I’ve now also started to make artworks from them. For instance, I’ve been commissioned to make one for a family that has had four generations in the army, serving in World War I through to Afghanistan, so I will incorporate elements from different eras into the piece.’ These artworks also feature elements of Trench Art, decorative items made by soldiers, such as small model Spitfires made out of copper pennies. Sara Jane often makes bespoke lampshades or cushions, using maps depicting territories where customers know that their relatives or friends served. ‘The maps are always of occupied areas or enemy territory from World War II or the Cold War years, and you can often tell from the place names and borders which eras they are from. Many were issued by the regiment and came back unused. Although they still print similar maps on man-made fabrics for use by the serving forces today, I don’t use any produced after 1957.’


Sara Jane feels privileged that her work has often prompted customers to share their personal or family wartime stories with her. ‘I was contacted by one 92-year-old, Don, who saw my pieces at the RAF Museum. He was a pilot during World War II and “ditched” his plane in the sea, so used one of the maps to guide him to safety. His story is incredible; it is about making those connections.’ The authenticity of the maps is fundamental to Sara Jane’s work, as for her it is not simply about the craft, but also about the back-story. ‘It is important for me to preserve the integrity of the maps, which is why I only use genuine ones and would never reprint them. As you handle the fabric, you wonder where it has been, and who else has handled it. It also makes me appreciate what we have here more, and that sense of belonging. We take it for granted, but what the people who used these maps wanted more than anything was to come home to the Britain that they knew.’ Her work also has an element of carrying on the make-do-and-mend theme of the postwar era. ‘Clothing rationing went on until the 1950s, so people had to be resourceful and made all sorts of items out of the maps then, too,’ she explains. Working with such a finite resource, it is inevitable that one day Sara Jane will run out of maps. ‘It will end, but in a way that feels right,’ she says, ‘because it is about people owning a bit of history and retelling the story of the maps.’ To find out more about Home Front Vintage, visit or call 07590 848014 l

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OPPOSITE TOP Sara Jane often packages up her work at the kitchen table, and is kept company by her two English Pointers, Henry and Tilly. ‘I include information telling people about the fascinating history and provenance of the item they are buying,’ she says

RIGHT ‘I keep all of the cuttings and every scrap of a map, as I can then use these to make buttons, pendants, cufflinks, earrings, or for artworks,’ says Sara Jane FAR RIGHT Finished cushions are stored in a cupboard decorated with vintage paper maps

The Artisan

‘It is about people owning a bit of history and retelling the story of the maps’ JUNE 2015 31

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Cheerful CHECKS Bring a year-round early-summer feel to your home with characterful plaid, gingham and chequered designs in blue, red and green, set against a light backdrop Styling LISA BROWN Photographs JOANNA HENDERSON JUNE 2015 33

Using washed wood and painted furniture, combine contemporary Scandinavian and British country styles; a subtly patterned wallpaper mixed with bold, punchy checks will create a strong yet relaxed look in a living room 34 JUNE 2015



White walls and weatherboarding introduce a chalet feel to a dining room that’s cool in summer and bright in winter. Add interest with a striking checked rug and a delicately sponged chequerboard paint effect on an upcycled table JUNE 2015 37

Embroidered holes in this unusual fabric help to create a simple and pretty bedroom blind. Attach a hemmed piece measuring the window width, and thread ribbon through the holes in the bottom third, gathering it up to create a scalloped effect 38 JUNE 2015

Decorating JUNE 2015 39

Introduce colour to outdoor seating with cushions in brightly coloured gingham and floral fabrics, then make up a pretty garland from the remnants as an alternative to bunting; it will keep away unwanted insects and provide shaded respite from the sun 40 JUNE 2015


Sourcebook Decorating

Cheerful CHECKS Bring a year-round early-summer feel to your home with characterful plaid, gingham and chequered designs in blue, red and green, set against a light backdrop

Folia wallpaper in Inga 110286, £43 per roll, Harlequin. From top left: Peas and Pods jelly mould, £33, Burleigh. Large mugs, £15; small mugs, £13 each; jug, £25, all Bell Pottery. Vintage bowls, £45 for a set, Ardingly Antiques Fair. Teatowels, £7.50 each, Cologne & Cotton. Middle shelf, from left: Cutlery, from a selection at Jennifer’s Cutlery. Vintage glass jar,

Find the items featured in our decorating shoot £6, Pimpernel & Partners. Plate, £25, Bell Pottery. Small tiles, £75 for set of 16, Welbeck Tiles. Pokal wine glasses, £1.40 each, Ikea. Bottom, from left: Enamel bread bin, £45, Pimpernel & Partners. Peas and Pods jelly mould, as before. Vintage bowls, £45 for a set, as before. Bowl, £20; plate, £25; mugs, £15 each; large serving bowl, £40, all Bell Pottery.

Styling LISA BROWN Photographs JOANNA HENDERSON JUNE 2015 33



White walls and weatherboarding introduce a chalet feel to a dining room that’s cool in summer and bright in winter. Add interest with a striking checked rug and a delicately sponged chequerboard paint effect on an upcycled table

Using washed wood and painted furniture, combine contemporary Scandinavian and British country styles; a subtly patterned wallpaper mixed with bold, punchy checks will create a strong yet relaxed look in a living room JUNE 2015 37

Style assistant CHARLOTTE PAGE

34 JUNE 2015

LEFT IMAGE Dawn Chorus wallpaper in 213718, £39 per roll, Sanderson. Bobble rug, £295, Loaf. Vintage chair, Sunbury Antiques fair, £35, painted in Original chalk paint, £18.95 for 1ltr, Annie Sloan. Seat covered in Red Check linen, £35 per m, Volga Linen. Table, £229, Scumble Goosie. On chair, from bottom: Blue and White Check linen fabric, £35 per m, Volga Linen. Ascot Stripe 1 fabric, £29.50 per m, Ian Mankin. Samaya fabric in Sky/Rose 223573, £32 per m, Sanderson. Reverie fabric in Coral 131091, £47 per m, Harlequin. Ribbon, from a selection at VV Rouleaux. Mug, £10, John Lewis. On table: Vintage book, from £6, The Old Haberdashery. Book covered in Avon Check Indigo fabric, £24.50 per m, Ian Mankin. Mug, £14, Pimpernel & Partners. RIGHT IMAGE Florence large sofa in Ecru, £699, Tesco. Coffee table, £375, India Jane. Hampton console table, £445, Oka. Curtains made up in Gingham Large Check fabric in Teal and White, £24 per m, Deckchair Stripes. On sofa, from left: Pink Anemones cushion, £82, India Jane. Cushions covered in Ascot Stripe 1, £29.50 per m, Ian Mankin; Red Check linen, £35 per m, Volga Linen; Polly Mineral in F0625/03, £14 per m, Clarke & Clarke. For similar throw, try Atlantic Blankets, £75. Provencal basket, £24, The French House. On console: For similar blue jug, try Vibrant Home, £35.95. Flowers, from a selection at Scarlet & Violet. Lampbase and shade, William for the Croft Collection, £95, John Lewis. On coffee table: Vases in wooden tray, £12.50, An Angel at My Table. Red Felicity cup and saucer, £25; plate, £10.50, both Burleigh. Painting, £75, Vintage Flower Paintings. For suppliers’ details, turn to stockists page

LEFT IMAGE Empire kitchen table, £729, Scumble Goosie. Marseille metal chairs, £49, and stool, £25, both Tesco. Botanical prints, £29.50 each, Kitzieg at Not on the High Street. White Ribba frames, £6 each, Ikea. Felicity mugs, £15 each, Burleigh. Potters jug, £25; faux pink parrot tulips, £3 each, An Angel at My Table. Asiatic Pheasants bowls, £18 each, Burleigh. Ambrosia bowls, £35 and dinner plates, £40 for set of four, all Loaf. Milk bottle, £12; blue bowls, £2 each, both Ardingly Antiques Fair. Blue and White Check fabric, £35 per m, Volga Linen. Cartouche board, £76, Rowen & Wren. Highland Check rug, £175, Laura Ashley. Cushion covered in Hopsack fabric in Peony, £34.50 per m, Ian Mankin. RIGHT IMAGE Table painted in 107 and 142 (blue check and border), £10.62 for 1ltr, Colourman Paints. Dinner plate, as before. Red Felicity plate, £10.50; jug, £16.50, both Burleigh. Milk bottle, as before. Vintage cutlery, from a selection at Jennifer’s Cutlery. Small glasses, £2 for six, Ikea. Checked jug, £45, Bell Pottery.


Introduce colour to outdoor seating with cushions in brightly coloured gingham and floral fabrics, then make up a pretty garland from the remnants as an alternative to bunting; it will keep away unwanted insects and provide shaded respite from the sun 40 JUNE 2015


Embroidered holes in this unusual fabric help to create a simple and pretty bedroom blind. Attach a hemmed piece measuring the window width, and thread ribbon through the holes in the bottom third, gathering it up to create a scalloped effect 38 JUNE 2015 JUNE 2015 39

LEFT IMAGE Blind made up in Reverie fabric in Coral 131091, £47 per m, Harlequin. Pink Camille striped pillowcase, £26 each, Cologne & Cotton. Cushion made up in Samaya fabric in Sky/Rose 223573, £32 per m, Sanderson. Vintage book, £8, The Old Haberdashery. RIGHT IMAGE GUS 085 bedside table, £612, Chelsea Textiles. Mirabelle Blue duvet cover, £70; scalloped pillowcases, £26 each; fitted sheet, £36; Cutwork baby pillowcase, £30; mohair throw in Paradise Blue, £75; Pink Camille scalloped floral pillowcases, £26 each, all Cologne & Cotton. Pillow covered in Avon Check fabric in Indigo, £24.50 per m, Ian Mankin. Paisley cushion covered in Harriet fabric in Chambray F0623/01, £14 per m, Clarke & Clarke. For similar baskets, try Garden Trading. Alslev rug, £15, Ikea. For a similar Anglepoise lamp, try John Lewis. On table: Vases (set of three, as before), £12.50, An Angel at My Table.

Idler swing seat, £1,870, Wilverley. From left: Cushions and lining made up in Mimi Check in red, £28 per m, Harlequin. Watercolour cushion, £25, An Angel at My Table. Cushions covered in Vintage Daisy fabric in J682F-01, £49 per m, Jane Churchill; Madame Butterfly fabric, £89 per m, Designers Guild, and Mimi Check fabric in Lime, £28 per m, Harlequin. For similar throw, try Wool Blanket online. Cushion (on chair) covered in Vintage Daisy J682F-02, £49 per m, Jane Churchill. For similar blanket, try Rural Urban, £44. Cushion covered in Amrapali Peony fabric, £85 per m, Designers Guild. Glass jug, £18, John Lewis. Cocktail shaker, £34, Rowen & Wren. Suitcase, £65, Liberty. Sweet pea garland, £14.40, Withycombe Fair. JUNE 2015 41

Readers’ Homes Awards

Readers’ HOMES AWARDS Is your beautiful home worthy of a prize? Then send in your entry for Period Living’s prestigious annual accolades and you could be a winner


ave you recently finished a renovation project large or small, restyled and refreshed your home décor, or do you simply feel that the interior scheme you have created over the years is now complete? If so, then we want to hear from you. Every year we invite readers to enter their completed home-improvement projects for our longstanding awards, and it is a great privilege to see the diverse and varied schemes. As we launch the 2015 Readers’ Homes Awards, we look forward to discovering the stories behind the creation of your inspiring and stylish designs. For details of how to enter, turn to page 46. For the first time this year, we have partnered with our sister title, Homebuilding & Renovating magazine, and The Daily Telegraph, and the Period Living Readers’ Homes Awards will now comprise a category in the wider Daily Telegraph Homebuilding & Renovating Awards 2015. Your entries to Period Living will automatically be entered for these awards; for more details, visit


In 2014 we received entries for homes brimming with clever ideas and personal style. The standard was exceptional and demonstrated a flair for decorating on a limited budget, painstaking restorations, or clever use of space. Of the five winners, the overall winning prize went to Karen McBain and Kevin Steer for their renovated Victorian apartment, which impressed the judges with its eclectic style. Wendy and Peter Blakeman’s extended country home (above) was a lesson in the rewards of hard work and DIY, while Jane Beck’s Welsh cottage was a sensitive renovation of a once derelict shell. Peta and Ivo Clifton’s transformation of a medieval hall amazed, blending Elizabethan features with 21stcentury living, while Jenny and Mel Dunmow cleverly combined two separate dwellings into one home on a tight budget – with beautiful results. This year, we would love to see a similar breadth of projects and a vast array of homes with character of all sizes and styles. We hope that you will want to open the doors of your home to share with Period Living and its readers.

ABOVE Wendy Blakeman handmade many of the soft furnishings for her 18thcentury home, which won the farmhouse category in the 2014 Awards JUNE 2015 43


From a shortlist of the entries, our panel of judges will choose five winning homes. All five will be photographed and showcased in the January 2016 Readers’ Homes Awards issue of Period Living. We are thrilled to announce textile designer Vanessa Arbuthnott as a guest judge of the Readers’ Homes Awards 2015. Vanessa started her business from her kitchen table 14 years ago, and has since created many charming fabric collections, inspired by a passion for the countryside and organic shapes. To these, she has added a complementary range of wallpapers and coverings, rugs and furniture. Her latest fabric collection, Birds and Beasts, marks the first collaboration with her two artist/designer daughters, Rose and Flora. For more details, visit Vanessa says: ‘It is an honour to be asked to help judge the Period Living Readers’ Homes Awards. I am looking forward to seeing the beautiful interiors, and trying to choose the winners!’ 44 JUNE 2015

ABOVE LEFT Vanessa Arbuthnott, guest judge for the 2015 awards, and some of the fabrics from her latest Birds and Beasts collection ABOVE The kitchen of Karen McBain’s home, which was overall winner of the 2014 Awards. ‘I had always hoped to have our home photographed, and watching a professional photographer and stylist at work was really exciting,’ she says RIGHT Jenny and Mel Dunmow’s combining of two characterful cottages into one lovely home won best conversion

Readers’ Homes Awards

RIGHT Dress your home with beautiful fabrics and accessories such as the ones seen here, available from Kingdom Interiors BELOW Wendy and Peter Blakeman also turned their garden shed into a stylish retreat BELOW RIGHT The bathroom in Peta and Ivo Clifton’s Grade II-listed medieval hall, which was the 2014 country house category winner


Our overall Period Living winner will win £1,250 worth of vouchers to spend at Kingdom Interiors, which offers one of the widest online ranges of fabrics and wallpapers in the UK. It also has an extensive collection of furniture, curtain poles, cushions and accessories, from lighting to bedlinen – the finishing touches for any home. Kingdom Interiors’ website features over 90,000 images, showcasing the latest collections of fabrics and wallpapers from well-known brand names, such as Harlequin and Sanderson, through to more exclusive ranges, including Designers Guild, Zoffany and Osborne & Little. The company also makes bespoke, competitively priced curtains and blinds, to suit any household’s interior design scheme. If you’re not sure where to start, the website has a mood board function, allowing users to create inspirational collages and test out a variety of different style combinations of colour, pattern, texture and shape. For more details, see


Our panel of judges will select one overall winner, who will receive £1,250 worth of vouchers to spend at Kingdom Interiors. Four runner-up category winners will receive £150 worth of vouchers to spend at Vanessa Arbuthnott. All winners will enjoy a year’s free subscription to Period Living JUNE 2015 45

Readers’ Homes Awards


Origin Global is a leading specialist UK manufacturer of bespoke aluminium bi-fold doors, windows and made-to-measure blinds. It exclusively manufactures products at its Buckinghamshire-based factory and combines premium-grade aluminium with precision engineering to bring style, sophistication and security to any property. Skilfully designed, beautifully made and exquisitely finished, a product from the Origin Home range can transform a property by opening up space, inviting in natural light and removing the barriers between inside and out to help release its full potential. For information, see

How to enter BY POST


Fill in the form (right), then on separate A4 sheets tell us, in up to 500 words, why you think your home should win, giving us details of how your home looked before you renovated/decorated, what you’ve achieved and how you’ve gone about it. Please also tell us what period/original features you’ve managed to save/restore/reinstate. Take photos of all rooms (quick snaps will do) and the exterior; send about 20-30 prints, or good-quality digital printouts (ideally with a CD). Please also supply any ‘before’ pictures available, and a photo of yourself. Send the coupon, A4 sheets, photos and CD (optional) to the address on the entry form. We regret that we are unable to return any photographs sent.

2 3

ENTRY FORM Title ....................... Forename ................................ Surname .................................................................... Address ...................................................................... ........................................................................................ ........................................................................................ ........................................................................................ Postcode .................................................................... Telephone (day) .....................................................


Send the above information and digital jpeg images, no larger than 72 dpi each, by email to ONLINE

To enter online, log on to periodliving. and follow the instructions. You will need to have the above information available to complete your application. Closing date for entries is 30 June 2015. Please refer to the terms and conditions*

46 JUNE 2015

ABOVE Jane Beck transformed her winning Welsh cottage, which is filled with colourful, traditional blankets, over the course of 15 years

(evening) ................................................................... Email ........................................................................... Age/period of house/listed status (if applicable) .......................................................... Send entries to: Period Living Readers’ Homes Awards 2015, Period Living, 2 Sugarbrook Court, Aston Road, Bromsgrove, B60 3EX

*Terms & conditions: 1. The competition is open to all UK residents (including architectural practices) aged over 18, except for employees of Centaur Media and their families. 2. The closing date for entries is 30 June 2015. 3. No responsibility can be accepted for entries lost, damaged or delayed in transit. 4. Photocopied entry forms will be accepted. 5. No cash alternatives will be offered in lieu of prizes that may be offered. 6. We cannot guarantee the return of entries, including drawings and photographs. 7. Details of entrants and their projects (not including specific location details) may be published in Period Living, The Daily Telegraph, Homebuilding & Renovating and Real Homes in print and online, at the discretion of the editors, and may be used in publicity material (including publicity material used by the sponsors). 8. The judges’ decision will be final and unchallengeable. No correspondence will be entered into. 9. The judges reserve the right not to award prizes in any category if entries do not reach the required standard. 10. We will not necessarily contact unsuccessful entrants or be able to return entries. 11. You are advised to keep a photocopy of this form for your own information.

David Salisbury luxury hardwood rooms are made to be living, well-used spaces. Meticulously engineered from sustainable wood, they are the product of decades of exacting expertise and sympathetic design. Whether it’s a place for you to dream, or to watch your family grow, it’s there to be used. For years to come. For more details phone 01278 764444 or go to PL0715


Linda Kilburn transformed the bottom of her garden and created a relaxed new living space when she built a charming summerhouse on the waterside – complete with rowing boat Words & Styling HEATHER DIXON Photographs COLIN POOLE

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Readers’ Homes

The summerhouse was built in two stages and cost around ÂŁ21,000. The decking overhangs the man-made lake, to which more than 200 small fish have been added, attracting the occasional hungry heron or otter JUNE 2015 49

‘I had the idea of a boathouse, complete with a rowing boat that I could pile up with cushions and lie in’ The project Linda Kilburn, who owns a property renovation business, and her husband David, who runs a builders’ merchant PROPERTY A waterside summerhouse in the grounds of the couple’s late-18thcentury house, in a Conservation Area not far from Hull, East Yorkshire ESSENTIAL REPAIRS An extra room was added to the wooden structure LAYOUT The original summerhouse featured a kitchen and living area, and the extension provides space for parties and meetings OWNERS

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Readers’ Homes


ot everyone would consider holding a business meeting in a boathouse, but Linda Kilburn’s meetings are anything but conventional. She believes that some of the best ideas originate in places of peace and tranquillity, so her colleagues and clients may well find themselves enjoying afternoon tea on the sun-dappled decking of her summerhouse, instead of shuffling papers across a boardroom table. When friends drop by for coffee and a catch-up, too, they are less likely to end up in the kitchen of Linda’s 18th-century house than at the bottom of her garden, sitting in comfort by the side of the lake. Linda’s hideaway is a beautiful two-room haven surrounded by mature trees, a clear water stream and a timber jetty – perfect for an English summer. Yet this delightful corner didn’t exist when she

ABOVE Most of the interior accessories are from Linda’s sister’s shop, Glenis Johnson Designs, and the Laura Ashley sofa was an Ebay find LEFT An antique French farmhouse table and old school chairs create an informal meetingcum-dining room. The walls are finished in a bespoke paint mix JUNE 2015 51

ABOVE Open shelves in the small kitchen area are perfect for displaying Linda’s collection of stoneware, baskets and crockery, and for hanging up dried herbs. The reclaimed woodburner was added when the summerhouse was extended. ‘It’s so cosy with the fire lit that I can use it year-round. In fact, it gets so warm at times that I have to fling open the doors,’ she says

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bought the property with her husband David 20 years ago. ‘The garden sloped away to a field grazed by horses and cattle, with woodland at the back,’ says Linda. ‘After a few years we decided to incorporate it into the garden and create a small lake fed by a beck that runs along the bottom.’ Landscape gardener Stephen Bean created the lake, using a bulldozer to dig out the crater. The four-foot-deep hollow was lined, and water from the beck redirected into it at one end and out again at the other. The excavated soil was used to create a small amphitheatre overlooking the lake, then Stephen designed and built a decked walkway and jetty along with a lakeside path and small pebble beach. ‘It was beautiful, but I felt it needed something to finish it off,’ says Linda. ‘I had the idea of a boathouse,

complete with a little rowing boat that I could pile up with cushions and lie in, drifting on the water, watching the clouds go by.’ After sharing her ideas with local cabinetmaker Albert Thundercliffe, however, Linda decided to create more than just a boathouse, so asked him to build a rustic wooden summerhouse with a cedar shingle roof, containing a small kitchen area and comfortable seating. Albert added Velux windows in the pitched roof to draw in plenty of natural light, and built large glass doors across one wall so it can be opened up to the decking in summer. He then painted the wooden floors, walls and ceiling in Farrow & Ball paints, which were mixed to create the exact shades Linda had in mind. For a while, the property was used as a conventional summerhouse, but Linda liked

Readers’ Homes

‘It’s the perfect spot for intimate social gatherings. I had a small kitchen built so we could make drinks and heat food’

the idea of creating an extra room so they could sleep there if they wanted. ‘Unfortunately, David wasn’t so keen on that idea, so I decided to build an extension that could be used as either a dining room or a meeting room instead,’ says Linda. The second phase is designed to complement the original building, with a pitched roof and a period-style latch door joining the two. Albert made another set of fold-back doors so that the entire frontage can be opened lakeside. A graceful overhang from the original section creates a sheltered eating area in case of rain, while a wood-burning stove keeps it warm and cosy even when it’s snowing outside. It has proved the perfect spot for intimate social gatherings, and Linda’s friends love to share lunch overlooking the lake. ‘I had a small kitchen built

ABOVE RIGHT The natural materials of this twig mirror complement the rustic design of the summerhouse RIGHT This antique candle sconce was bought at Newark Antiques Market JUNE 2015 53

‘I come here on my own when I need some peace and quiet... It’s an ideal location for creative thinking’ ABOVE Bespoke doors made by cabinetmaker Albert Thundercliffe open onto the decking and frame the view of the lake, jetty and amphitheatre beyond. For a similar table and chairs set, try Morale Garden Furniture LEFT Linda decorates the summerhouse with fresh flowers and foliage picked from her garden, which she displays in vintage crockery

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so we could make drinks and heat up food in the microwave, but if I’m doing anything more than that I put everything I need on a golf buggy and bring it over from the house,’ she says. Linda furnished the summerhouse with pieces she already had, including a secondhand sofa, antique French farmhouse table, old school chairs and collectibles. She keeps it stocked up with fresh flowers and foliage from the garden, and buys vintage crockery for afternoon teas. ‘I come here on my own when I need some peace and quiet and time to think,’ says Linda, who has seen otters, minks, herons, water voles and all kinds of small birds making their home in and around the lake. ‘It’s so peaceful here that it’s an ideal location for creative thinking. One day I’m going to write my novel here – I can’t think of anywhere that would inspire me more.’

Readers’ Homes 1

Style notes


Mimic Linda’s lakeside retreat by teaming a relaxing palette with nautical-style pieces 8



4 6




1 SCONCE Hang these ornately carved wall lights, mounted on a framed limewashed plaque, either side of a mirror or bed, H49x W27cm, £99, The French Bedroom Company. 2 PLATE Collectable china can become a family heirloom. This Beardmore Old Castles plate has a delightful

scenic vignette around the border, c.1910, £45, Lovers of Blue & White. 3 SOFA Multiyork’s Verona medium sofa in Athena Ivory is an elegant design that is perfect for a countrystyle interior, H95x W168xD104cm, £2,239. 4 CUSHION Reversible designs offer value for money. This herringbone

For suppliers’ details, turn to stockists page

cotton cushion in Pacific/ Natural has a wide stripe on one side, and narrow stripe on the reverse, fastened with a pretty bow, £15, John Lewis. 5 BOAT Add a nautical aspect with themed ornaments. This wooden yacht, H57xW46cm, has cotton sails and is mounted on a metal stand, £24, Adventino.

6 SINK Fired Earth’s Bastide sink unit is handcrafted from oak, H91xW192xD65cm, £4,703, and includes a double fireclay sink and mixer tap. Here, it is in Weald Green, one of 10 painted finishes. 7 BIRD Handcarved from sustainable wood, this redshank preening bird is a wonderful

re-creation of the wader, which can be spotted along estuary shorelines, H30cm, £38, Coastal Home. 8 THROW This Dusty Blue Elvang Classic throw is perfect for cosying up on the sofa. It is made from supersoft Peruvian alpaca wool and finished with classic-style tassels, £90, Occa-Home. JUNE 2015 55



To create their first family home, Amy and Philip Matthews revisited their roots and revived a Georgian gem Words SINE FLEET Photographs TORY MCTERNAN


hildhood memories of wonderful summers spent outdoors, in the heart of the beautiful rolling Chiltern countryside, prompted Amy Matthews to leave London behind and head to Oxfordshire with her husband Philip to start their hunt for a new family home. The couple had lived in the capital for a decade, but their property search took on a renewed sense of urgency with the arrival of their first child. With family close by, and easy access to London and Oxford, the Chilterns proved irresistible. Amy and Philip fell for the characterful, rambling Georgian house immediately. It had a beautiful village setting, its façade was framed

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by climbing roses and box trees, and the interior was full of original features. ‘It looked absolutely glorious,’ says Amy. ‘We had been for a general nosey around the area and knew parts of it well. I remember thinking how pretty the village was, and then being completely wowed by the house.’ The couple bought the property in January 2011 and moved swiftly to renovate it in just four months. ‘Luckily, we were able to rent a place in the village while the project was ongoing,’ explains Amy. ‘It was ideal, as we were on hand to oversee progress, but the builders didn’t have to work around us, which made the process much quicker.’ Although the house was in good condition when the couple took it on, the renovation

Readers’ Homes

Amy and the children love to play in their garden, which is just under an acre in size. The Georgian house (on left) has a Victorian link (left of centre) to what was once a separate cottage JUNE 2015 57

work required included new electrics, replumbing, remodelling the bathrooms, redecorating, and childproofing the garden – including removing a pond. ‘There was a lot to do,’ Amy admits, ‘because it’s a big house. But as there was nothing structural to tackle, we were able to move quickly.’ In designing her new home, Amy took her inspiration from the character of the property itself. ‘The architectural detail is charming. It’s a house that’s full of surprises – there are all sorts of old doors and panelling, beautiful original ironmongery, quirky little bookshelves, and plenty of nooks and crannies. It’s also very higgledy-piggledy, with steps everywhere, leading to different levels,’ she says. ‘We were determined to keep as many period features as possible and maintain the integrity of the building, so I considered each room individually. 58 JUNE 2015

‘It’s an intriguing house architecturally, too, as it was once two separate buildings,’ she continues. The main house was built in the early-18th century and a link to the neighbouring cottage was added in Victorian times. The property evolved further, with 20th-century additions including a conservatory, which houses the kitchen and dining room, and a pergola. Interior designer Amy was well equipped to add to the charm of the house. Her mix of vintage, antique and contemporary pieces, along with the elegant proportions and abundance of light within the house, has created a graceful family home. ‘My mother calls it eclectic,’ she says, ‘but, by and large, we’ve stayed traditional – I like furniture and detail that are contemporary to the original house’. Artworks clearly influence Amy and Philip’s interior design choices, too, and their passion

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FAR LEFT Amy took inspiration from the era of the house when designing this space, with antique tall drawers that once belonged to her parents positioned next to the room’s original fireplace. The couple’s art collection also influenced the scheme – the artwork in this room was bought from the London Original Print Fair at the Royal Academy and at auction. The blue chair from The French House has been covered in fabric by Dominique Kieffer for Rubelli. Lassco supplied the glass coffee table, and the tall lamp is from Vaughan Designs. The walls are painted in Sisal by Paint Library – a warm, restful shade CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT Carefully selected pieces, such as the shellfilled lamp passed down to Amy by her granny, create a display on a sideboard found at a local auction. The cushions, sourced from Chelsea Textiles, are arranged on a sofa from the couple’s previous home; decorative ornaments and period details add to the layers of interest

The project

Amy Matthews, owner of residential interior design company Amy Carlisle Design (amycarlisledesign. com), and her husband Philip, who works in the financial sector. The couple have three young sons, Eddie, five, Ollie, three, and Barnaby, six months PROPERTY A Grade II-listed Georgian house, with Victorian and 20th-century additions, in a village close to Wallingford, Oxfordshire ESSENTIAL REPAIRS Replumbing, replacing electrics, new bathrooms, alterations to garden and redecoration LAYOUT Amy and Philip have maintained the existing floorplan of the house, which has four reception rooms, five bedrooms and four bathrooms OWNERS JUNE 2015 59

ABOVE An informal dining area is housed in the conservatory extension, overlooking the garden. It is a relaxed blend of classic and modern styles, with a vintage Ercol dining set and a mid-century armchair, designed by Ernest Race, from Retrouvius. Red Poppies in Turquoise Bucket, a painting by Patrick Procktor, is displayed above. The dresser was bought from the previous owner of the house

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for fine art is in evidence in every room of the house. ‘We both love going to auctions and galleries,’ says Amy, ‘and we never miss the London Original Print Fair, held each year at the Royal Academy, which is a brilliant place to visit if you want to start collecting. We have quite a collection now – we’re running out of wall space!’ Amy’s favourite spot is the living room in the main Georgian part of the house. ‘The large bay window is on the brow of a hill, and is elevated above the garden. Sitting there at the desk, you get the sense that you’re on the bow of a ship’, she says. ‘You can also see what the children are up to, so it’s an ideal lookout point! We use that room a lot as a family, dividing our evenings between it and the children’s playroom.’ The house also has a more formal drawing room, in the Victorian link. It is a beautifully proportioned room with large French windows, and the couple love to host parties in here, where guests can spill out onto the terrace. ‘It’s cosy and friendly – the whole house has that feeling as soon as you walk in: a warm and welcoming vibe,’ says Amy. Wisely, Amy and Philip have done little to change the timeless exterior appearance of their village home. With just under an acre

of land to the rear of the property, the garden sweeps down from the house, which is perched on a small hill. ‘The hill runs down to the cottage, and then into the garden, too,’ Amy explains. ‘Our predecessor designed the landscaping. While we are not naturally green-fingered ourselves, we are learning fast!’ Although the project ran fairly smoothly, Amy says that if they were to start all over again, she and Philip would do certain things differently. ‘We would give more thought to practical matters, such as shower drainage’, she explains. ‘As we didn’t think about the soil-pipe position before we made key decisions, we had to put in a special drain with a pump mechanism, which makes the most dreadful noise every time we turn it on.’ With most of the work out of the way, Amy and Philip’s future plans for the house include a full kitchen remodel. ‘The painted units were inherited from the previous owners. We have made a few minimal changes, such as replacing the flooring, but we are living with it for now as we plan to renovate it eventually,’ says Amy. Following a very hectic few years, Amy has recently returned to work as an interior designer. So is her own design project now complete? ‘I see a house as an ongoing process’, she says.

Readers’ Homes

FAR LEFT AND LEFT Characterful ceramics make a feature in the room BELOW The previous owners chose the units, terracotta tiles and the worktops in the kitchen, which leads up the wooden steps into the children’s playroom

‘We inherited the kitchen units from the previous owners, but we’re planning to renovate the space’ JUNE 2015 61

ABOVE A combination of floral fabrics, including curtains from Sanderson, and the striped wallpaper from Colefax & Fowler lend a vintage feel to this light-filled room. The chest of drawers, found locally, has been painted in Churlish, a sunny shade by Farrow & Ball. The white iron bedframe was Philip’s mother’s RIGHT In this bedroom, the headboard has been upholstered in fabric by Penny Morrison, available at Redloh House Fabrics. The Neisha Crosland embroidered cushions are from Chelsea Textiles, and the walls have been refreshed with Farrow & Ball’s Old White paint FAR RIGHT Painted in Dulux Electric Green to match the antique mirror, this bathtub from UK Bathroom Warehouse stands out in style. The same paint was used for the chequerboard floor. The blind fabric is Zagazoo by Osborne & Little

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‘I don’t think it’s ever completely finished – there is always something to add or take away, as well as tweaking and refining to be done. ‘Our house project came together quickly, along with our three young children, so we really have experienced a total lifestyle change,’ Amy continues. Having made the move as a family, they have discovered that this new way of life suits them perfectly. ‘Everything has slotted into place and we couldn’t be happier,’ she says. ‘I don’t think we could have found a better home for our growing family.’

Readers’ Homes

Style notes


Mix antique pieces and bold brights for a scheme like Amy and Philip’s








1 MIRROR Hand-carved from solid mahogany, and then adorned with gold-leaf patina over an antiqued crackle-patina ivory finish, the Palais mirror from The French Bedroom Company is reminiscent of Louis XVI style. H135xW85cm, £375. 2 FABRIC Give character to your bathroom with a blind made from this

Capuchins fabric in Cream, featuring parrots and flowers, £58 per m, Fabrics & Papers. 3 TABLE LAMP With its hand-blown glass base, crafted by Indian artisans, teamed with a linen lampshade made in Dorset, this Flagon table lamp from Loaf is simplicity at its best. Available in two sizes:

For suppliers’ details, turn to stockists page

H63xDia.36cm, £95, and H76xDia.46cm, £125. 4 BATH The classicstyle Solus single-ended bath, by the Albion Bath Company, can be painted in any Dulux Trade Colour or one of three ‘burnished’ finishes: gold, iron and bronze. It comes in two sizes, priced from £1,301. 5 CHAIR Upholstered in Dove Grey cotton, the

Louis chair, H102xW72x D70cm, is hand-carved from sustainably sourced solid mango wood. It has an elegant shape with just the right height of seat for maximum comfort, £395 from Within Home. 6 JAR With a ceramic lid, this reproduction, hand-decorated Chinesestyle ginger jar, H22cm, costs £75 from Shimu.

Display a pair for a symmetrical exhibit. 7 PAINT Create a striking effect on a floor using a combination of two paint colours. Little Greene’s hardwearing oil-based floor paint is environmentally friendly and can be used on wood or concrete floors. Try Brilliant Green with Shirting, £59 for 2.5ltrs. JUNE 2015 63

Harriet found the sofa at Emporium Antiques Centre in Lewes and had it reupholstered. The cushions are from Designers Guild. On the mantel is her treasured angel candlestick, bought for ÂŁ2 in a junk shop

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A perfect

CANVAS Looking to make a fresh start, artist Harriet Hildick-Smith moved into this beautifully proportioned Queen Anne property and introduced her own creative touches Words KAREN DARLOW Photographs JODY STEWART Styling SIAN WILLIAMS JUNE 2015 65

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ecluded, not isolated; quiet, yet within easy reach of the town; a manageable size, but with enough space for herself and three children to enjoy: Harriet Hildick-Smith’s exacting wishlist for a new family home seemed unlikely to ever become a reality. That was before she saw the details for this charming property on the outskirts of Lewes, East Sussex. With her artist’s eye and imagination, she could see that it had the potential to give her what she was looking for, and there was even an annexe that she could convert into a studio where she could paint undisturbed. There was just one small snag – it was £60,000 over her budget. Recently separated from her husband, Harriet wasn’t in a positive frame of mind. ‘I really didn’t feel in a good place,’ she says. ‘Our old family home, a big house in the country, had gone to sealed bids, and I’d decided that the children and I needed to move into the town to be closer to our friends.’ There was some good luck at play, however: to supplement her income as an artist, Harriet had been helping out with viewings for a local estate agency and saw the details for the Queen Anne house just as it came on to the market. ‘I liked it, but I’d put it to the back of my mind because I didn’t think I could afford it; however, our old house sold for more than I was expecting and I was able to make an offer on this one,’ she explains. ‘A few months later, I found myself with the keys in hand, full of trepidation about whether or not I’d made the right decision.’ She needn’t have worried, though. Looking round the house now, it more than fulfils her initial strict requirements. ‘Within a week of

OPPOSITE Wooden panelling makes the winter living room a cosy space. Harriet found the rug on her travels in India ABOVE The summer living room is a lighter space, with a sofa from Beaumont & Fletcher covered in pink linen. The rug was bought in Turkey, and the coffee table was a Camden Market find. On the wall hangs a Paula Rego print, which was a gift from Germaine Greer RIGHT Harriet converted the annexe into a studio

The project Harriet Hildick-Smith, an artist. Two of her children, Bess, 20, and Tom, 15, live here, as well as dogs Libby and Stanley. Daughter Jemima, 22, often visits PROPERTY A Queen Anne house, built circa 1750, with five bedrooms, two living rooms and an extended kitchen-diner ESSENTIAL REPAIRS The house was in good condition, which suited Harriet perfectly and meant she only needed to make a few cosmetic improvements LAYOUT Harriet needed a studio for her painting, so she converted the annexe in the garden and paints there in the summer. She also turned a panelled dining room into a winter living room OWNER JUNE 2015 67

‘When the weather is warm, I leave the inside door wide open and it fills the hall with light and summer scents’ ABOVE Modern Eamesstyle chairs and a rustic farmhouse table, which Harriet inherited and painted grey, echo the blend of old and new in this part of the home. Here, the old kitchen meets the new diningroom extension, built by the previous owners RIGHT The Victorian glasshouse porch, filled with scented plants in the summer, makes a fragrant entrance to the home

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moving in, I felt really happy here,’ says Harriet. ‘I knew it was going to work out all right for us.’ Although it’s just a short walk from the town centre, the house is on a quiet lane, closed to cars, and is just as peaceful as the old family home. ‘The nice thing about the houses in this part of Lewes, is that they are tucked into the cliff, so the garden goes up in a series of terraces, on three levels,’ she says. ‘It makes for more difficult gardening, but I like the challenge, and I love the view of Lewes Castle and the Downs from the highest point in the garden. I also really like the effects you can create with lots of pots, and that’s the perfect solution here. I plant them up for each season.’ One of the things that initially sold the house to Harriet was the Victorian-built conservatorycum-porch at the front of the property. ‘The previous owners had orange and lemon trees in

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there, and I was completely captivated by it. I’ve filled it with plants, and it makes such a bright, welcoming entrance,’ she says. ‘When the weather is warm, I leave the inside door wide open and it fills the hall with light and summer scents.’ The house itself needed little work to adapt it to the family’s needs. A second living room had previously been used as a dining room –‘it’s such a light space and had lovely views of the garden, so I preferred to use it as a living room,’ explains Harriet. The previous owners had already improved the kitchen and added an impressive copper-clad extension, with bi-fold doors and exposed brickwork, to create a contemporary open-plan dining area. Harriet simply painted the cupboard doors and made the walls a warmer shade, with a suggestion of pink to soften the north-east light that can make the room seem

cold in winter. Eames-style dining chairs, a traditional farmhouse table and a stainlesssteel range-style cooker help to combine the original and modern sections of the house. This mix of old and new works successfully throughout the interior. Harriet complements original features, such as the magnificent wooden panelling in the main living room and her bedroom, with unusual items picked up on her travels, during her time running an antiques stall, and, of course, her own paintings, mostly oil on canvas, which are displayed around the house. One painting Harriet is very proud to own was received as a gift from Germaine Greer. ‘It’s an artist’s proof of Ring-a-ring o’ Roses by Paula Rego. Many years ago we were renting Germaine’s house and she gave me the painting when we moved out and bought our own place,’ says

ABOVE Harriet kept the existing kitchen units and refreshed them with Pale Blue paint by Farrow & Ball. The stainless-steel range-style cooker is from Mercury JUNE 2015 69

Harriet. It now hangs in the summer living room, where she can enjoy it from her favourite sofa. The other living room, on the ‘cosy, winter side of the house’, has a very different look. A Chesterfield sofa, which Harriet found in the nearby antiques centre, where she once ran a stall, and reupholstered in green velvet; a rug picked up in India; and her treasured angel candlestick, which cost just £2 at a local junk shop, all make for a more traditional style – the perfect complement to the wood-panelled walls. Similar honey-coloured panelling is to be found in the master bedroom. ‘I absolutely love my room. It’s so cosy with the warm tones of all the wood and the wallpapered ceiling; it’s a really comforting space,’ says Harriet. ‘The floral wallpaper design might not have seemed an obvious choice for the ceiling, but somehow it works. The room has shutters rather than curtains, so there’s a lovely light in here, too.’ Putting one of the five bedrooms to use as a dressing room means that Harriet can afford to keep her spacious bedroom clutter-free, with a simple bed from Habitat, a bedside table and a Louis XV-style armchair. ‘Two of my favourite possessions are in here: a blanket box that came from my parents’ house, and a huge mirror that I found in a Lewes antiques shop,’ she adds. With one of her charcoal life drawings and a huge junk-shop-find candlestick as accessories, her bedroom is like a distilled essence of the rest of the home: a comfortable mix of old, new and good light. It’s the perfect place for Harriet to contemplate a change of direction, and a new phase in life. 70 JUNE 2015

ABOVE Harriet’s bedroom is her sanctuary – she loves the cosy wooden panelling, and covered the ceiling in Laura Ashley wallpaper. The Louis XV-style armchair was bought at Three Angels Interiors in Hove, and her bed is from Habitat. She found the large candlestick at a local fleamarket LEFT Eldest daughter Jemima has her own bedroom for when she visits. Her bed frame is painted in Parma Gray by Farrow & Ball, the bedlinen is from Cath Kidston and Cologne & Cotton, and the striped blanket is from Aspace BELOW LEFT The classic basin and bathtub from Burlington were already installed when Harriet moved in. She painted the tongue-and-groove panelling in Farrow & Ball’s Skimming Stone

Readers’ Homes 2

Style notes


Re-create Harriet’s bedroom with Frenchstyle pieces and textured accessories 9








1 LIGHT The Atlanta pendant in pale antique brass has six arms and a L100cm chain, making it ideal for high-ceilinged rooms, H260xDia.70cm, £660, Där Lighting. 2 PRINT Bella Pieroni is a contemporary fine artist who specialises in the human form. The Embrace is a limitededition giclée print, one

of 250, and comes with a smart black frame, H60xW81cm, £450, Barker & Stonehouse. 3 SHUTTERS These custom-colour Classic Poplar shutters can be made to bespoke sizes, from £178 per m2 at California Shutters. 4 BOWL Add a textural element with this large silver bowl, which has

For suppliers’ details, turn to stockists page

a contemporary etched design, £18, RJR.John Rocha at Debenhams. 5 THROW Lexington’s classic checked throw in white, blue and grey is made from 100 per cent wool, £139, Occa-Home. 6 CHAIR With a fixed foam seat, the Bampton armchair is designed for comfort. Priced from £1,085 at Wesley-Barrell,

this H93xW86xD77cm Holika covered design with ebony legs is £1,605. 7 FLOWERS Set in resin water in a simple glass vase, this delightful silk white bulb arrangement comprises phalaenopsis orchids, narcissus, tulips and catkins, £39, Bloom. 8 CUSHION Woven in England from new wool, the Hatherleigh cushion

from Laura Ashley features contrasting striped panels and a feather cushion pad, £42. 9 WALLPAPER Not just for walls, wallpaper can look fantastic on the ceiling. Get the look of Harriet’s bedroom with Farrow & Ball’s Uppark BP 533, an 18th-century design featuring floral motifs, £85 per roll. JUNE 2015 71

Labour of love

Helen Pritchard and Ian Pomfret spent a decade creating a family home filled with carefully curated finds that reflect their unique sense of style Words KATIE TREGGIDEN Photographs BRUCE HEMMING Styling HELEN PRITCHARD

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H The project Helen Pritchard, a stylist/designer, and Ian Pomfret, a builder (both top), live here with daughters Orla, seven, and Astrid, four PROPERTY A three-bedroom terraced home dating from the Victorian period LOCATION Brighton, East Sussex ESSENTIAL REPAIRS Rotten flooring was replaced and the kitchen updated LAYOUT The bathroom was moved upstairs, the loft converted, and an extension added OWNERS

ABOVE The kitchen units were made in the 1950s using metal left over from World War II aeroplane production. Ian fitted the chunky shelving unit and wood worktop – reclaimed from a school. The wall tiles are from Topps Tiles and the stool and pendant light are car-boot-sale finds

elen Pritchard and Ian Pomfret bought their Victorian terraced home in 2005 with the intention of refurbishing the dated interior. Two children and almost 10 years later, they think they might have finally finished. ‘It is sort of completed, but it is in a constant state of flux,’ says Helen. ‘I absolutely love it, though.’ Moving from a rented flat, Helen and Ian were looking for something that they could add value to and give their own style makeover. ‘This was the first house that we saw,’ says Helen. ‘We got the mortgage offer on the Monday. I came to look at it on the Friday evening in the dark, and immediately said, “Yes, we’ll have it!” We put in a low offer and it was ours in less than a week.’ The previous owner, a plasterer, had decorated the property with items left over from office renovations. ‘It was absolutely hideous. There was no character left,’ says Helen. ‘It had office doors with ugly handles, nylon commercial carpets in royal blue and bottle green… it was just horrible.’ Where many people might have been put off, Helen had vision. ‘I remember thinking: brilliant – everything needs doing. It was a blank canvas and had the potential we were looking for.’ The first big job was an unexpected one – the flooring throughout the downstairs had to be JUNE 2015 73

RIGHT Ian laid reclaimed parquet pine flooring and fitted cornicing to tie in the dining room with the rest of the house, which predates it. Original Victorian radiators have been fitted throughout. Quirky items on display include an old Kick Back pinball machine – £5 from a car-boot sale – a large fairground game piece, a reclaimed corbel holding a statue of the Virgin Mary, and a German master clock BELOW Helen painted the chairs, from Malaysia, using a mix of tester pots. The Jupiler light and pub door were car-boot-sale finds; other items include a darts scoreboard and D*face Green Lady print

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‘I remember thinking: brilliant, everything needs doing. It had the potential we were looking for’ replaced. ‘Once we took up the carpet, we realised the floorboards were rotten and were going to fall apart, so everything had to go before we could re-lay them. I knew it would be a big job, so I went to live with my mum and dad in Liverpool for a couple of weeks and left Ian to it,’ Helen laughs. The next major undertaking for the couple was fitting the kitchen, which they’d bought while still living in their previous house. ‘I didn’t want a mass-produced design, and we saw these postwar units in Hastings. They were made in the old aeroplane factories from surplus metal,’ says

Helen. ‘I loved them, but Ian was concerned with the practicalities as we hadn’t even moved house yet. I managed to persuade him, though!’ The couple were able to temporarily store the units in Ian’s parents’ garage, and once they had moved in, piled them high in the kitchen until they could be installed. ‘The existing cabinets were orange-varnished pine – they were pretty old-fashioned,’ says Helen. ‘Ian removed them all and carefully slotted in ours, but it was a very makeshift kitchen arrangement for a while. ‘We have three different brands of unit – Paul Metalcraft, Redwing and Warwick – so it’s a bit mix-and-match, but that’s the look we wanted,’ Helen continues. ‘Ian recently put on the work surfaces and hung the shelves. It’s only really been completely finished in the past six months, but that’s the downside of Ian being a builder – our own project has had to fit in around his work.’ Once the kitchen was finished, they converted the loft into a master bedroom, by which point

ABOVE Filled with unique finds collected from auction sites, charity shops and car-boot sales, the living room is one of Helen’s favourite spaces. She upholstered the secondhand sofa with a patchwork of tapestries. The winged artwork is from an old fairground ride, the Balinese buffalo skull was an Ebay purchase, and the shelf underneath is Moroccan JUNE 2015 75

ABOVE The girls’ bedrooms are both decorated with original 1970s friezes from Pussy Home Boutique. Orla’s bed is French, sourced from Ebay, and the chest was discovered in the loft when the couple moved into the house. The rug and chair are from car-boot sales

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Helen was pregnant with their eldest daughter, Orla, now seven. ‘Ian took off the roof just before a massive storm – 90mph winds lifted the tarpaulin and rain was running down the stairs. He was planning to go out on the roof in the middle of the night to try to batten it down. I just screamed at him, saying, “I want my child to have a father!” I was hormonal and petrified, but it was finally finished and we moved up into that room two weeks before Orla was born.’ Now they were a family of three, an upstairs bathroom became imperative. ‘We had to turn it into a working family home,’ explains Helen. When Orla was only two months old, the couple built on top of an existing ground-floor extension to create a large family bathroom, which has a stunning view over Brighton. ‘Ian was adamant that he didn’t want the bathroom to be the smallest room in the house. He’d always had small bathrooms in rental properties in the past and so he wanted a good-sized space with a bath and a proper shower in it.’

‘I had a baby and couldn’t reach the first floor from the ground level. The work was disruptive at times’ Another job they tackled at around the same time was removing the carpet from the stairs and stripping them back to a natural wood finish. ‘Ian likes to be doing stuff,’ says Helen. ‘Orla was only a few weeks old when he decided to strip the stairs from top to bottom, so I had a tiny baby and couldn’t reach the first floor from the ground level. The project was very disruptive at times, but I sort of loved it. As our friends were working with Ian on the house, and they are proper craftspeople, it was really enjoyable.’ Then, last year, Ian installed French windows in the dining room overlooking the garden and

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ABOVE LEFT Orla and Astrid play together in Orla’s bedroom. Ian fitted the alcove shelving, which is made from reclaimed floor joists. The desk originally belonged to him, and the chair, found on Ebay, came from a handbag factory ABOVE A Mexican Day of the Dead paper cutting, a 40th birthday present from Ian to Helen, hangs in the stairwell alongside Tara McPherson and Pinky prints, and photographs of Ian’s ancestors LEFT Astrid’s bed was bought on Ebay and her patchwork quilt came from a car-boot sale. The trunk once belonged to Helen’s great-grandfather JUNE 2015 77

ABOVE Ian’s home office space is in the corner of the master bedroom. The desk and lamp are from Lewes Antiques Centre, the shelving unit is Art Deco and the wall hanging is from a fleamarket in France ABOVE RIGHT Artwork by Lidia de Pedro and Tara McPherson is displayed alongside taxidermy and toy cars. Helen upholstered the chair in patchwork RIGHT The quilt was £4 from a charity shop. Helen reupholstered the chair, from In My Room in Brighton, using fabric from a duvet cover

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‘I always recognise a floor that Ian’s laid. All good craftspeople leave their mark on a project’

Readers’ Homes

later removed the wall between the kitchen and the dining room. ‘Now we’ve put in the table, this space really works,’ says Helen. ‘In here, we entertain guests; the kids sit at the table doing craft projects and colouring; I run my stitching class, and I’m hosting a pop-up shop with some artist/maker friends. We really enjoy spending time in the space and it’s so multifunctional.’ A side-return extension was added later to provide a separate space for Helen to work in and the family’s tortoise, Terry, to live. ‘Terry takes up about a quarter of the whole space!’ laughs Helen. Finally, Ian and a colleague laid the dining room flooring six months ago. ‘It is reclaimed parquet and was a total labour of love. It took them over

a week,’ says Helen. ‘Ian spent a further week doing the cornicing and the ceiling roses so that it wouldn’t be just a box. That means a lot to me. I always recognise a floor that Ian’s laid, because it has a distinct look to it. All good craftspeople leave their mark on a project.’ The length of time the work has taken means the couple have accumulated accessories over the years, resulting in a rich, layered interior scheme. ‘We know our style is not to everyone’s taste, but it is our home and that’s what it reflects,’ says Helen. ‘We’ve never worried about what other people think. The house tells a tale – it’s the history of the past 10 years of our lives. Each room, every piece of furniture or item, has a memory attached to it.’

ABOVE Ian individually sanded and laid the reclaimed floorboards in the bathroom. ‘They’re slightly higgledy-piggledy and hand-finished, so look as if they’ve been there for years,’ says Helen. The bath was an Ebay purchase, the basin unit and mirrors came from car-boot sales, and the Art Deco lights are from In My Room JUNE 2015 79

Readers’ Homes

Style notes

1 1

Capture the eclectic look of Helen and Ian’s home with colourful retro buys




4 7


1 PENDANT Salvaged from a Scottish factory, this enamelled Thorlux 1950s light, Dia.46cm, comes with grey braided cable as standard, £312 from Skinflint Design. 2 CHAIR Bringing a modern twist to Shaker style, the Croft chair in Easy Pink is £222.60 from John Lewis of Hungerford. It also comes in 12 other 80 JUNE 2015

shades, from Marina Blue to Blanched Almond, and is H88xW41x38cm in size. 3 FABRIC This pretty Picnic Patchwork fabric, in Rose, is made from Panama cotton and costs £10.95 per m at Kids Fabrics. It is ideal for curtains, cushions and blinds. 4 TINS These retro-style tins, £25 for a set of three

sizes, feature Orla Kiely’s famous Multi Stem design. From John Lewis, they are ideal for storing tea, pasta, coffee and sugar. 5 BED The Grosvenor bed is handcrafted from solid mahogany, specially selected for its distinctive grain and character. Inspired by Victorian design, it has graceful curves

and is available at Barker & Stonehouse in three sizes: double, £1,075; king, £1,145; and super king, £1,429. 6 JUG Introduce a pretty colour to your kitchen with this mint-green glass carafe, featuring fluted finish and scalloped edge. H19.5cm, and £12.99 at H&M, it also comes in white.

7 PAINT For a barelythere hint of colour on your walls, choose Earthborn claypaint in soft chalky tones, such as Shallows and Tutu, both £32.70 for 2.5ltrs. 8 DESK Handmade from reclaimed teak, the Indah natural desk, H78xW120x D50cm, has a large central drawer with a concealed handle, £895, Puji.

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On the grapevine Enjoy the fragrant surroundings as the garden puts on an exuberant floral growth spurt this month


In the summer months, swifts return from Africa, their scythe-like silhouettes framed against the sky. These sooty brown birds have long, crescent-shaped wings and short, forked tails, and are often spotted in parties, swooping and chasing one another all day long. Swifts feed exclusively on spiders carried in the wind and insects caught on the wing, and will fly at different altitudes for food, depending on the weather. Offer them shelter in a specially designed swift nestbox, which can be fixed to a wall or can replace a house brick. For more information on giving nature a home, see

KNOTS LANDING Macramé is making a comeback, so embrace this vibe of 1970s bohemia and turn your home or summer terrace into a hanging garden of Babylon. Plant hangers, available in natural or black, from £47, Graham & Green. (020 8987 3700;

Heaven scent

Proceeds of the sales of Jo Malone’s new limited-edition White Lilac & Rhubarb candles, £42 each, will be donated to support garden charities across the UK. (0800 054 2411;

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Plant out hardened off sweetcorn in a sheltered spot. Pollination is vital for full cobs, so place in blocks, each 45cm apart

Star plant

Description Cistus x obtusifolius ‘Thrive’ is a sensational new hardy compact form of the ‘Sun Rose’ bred by Hillier Nurseries in Hampshire, which is really easy to grow. The grey-green evergreen leaves have a delightful honey fragrance, which is most noticeable on hot sunny days and when crushed. Planting Plant in any good, well-drained soil in full sunshine. It will grow happily either in a container or in a border, and reach a height and spread of H100xW150cm. The plants will benefit from a light trim every other year. Flowering Masses of pure-white flowers are produced throughout summer and will attract bees and butterflies. Top tips It is an ideal foil for shorter, contrasting blue and purple perennials, including aster and hardy salvia, or works well planted with other golden foliage plants. By Chris Webb, head of plants at Primrose online garden centre (0118 903 5210;


Gardening expert Mick Lavelle provides quick and easy solutions and answers to common horticultural queries


Find a peaceful spot to settle down on the Dahlia lounger, £259 from Marks & Spencer, and evoke scented blooms with an embroidered Fluro Bird cushion, £29.50. (



Our pick of the new garden books Anne Wareham’s witty and wry Outwitting Squirrels (£7.99, Michael O’Mara) is penned for all the gardeners who have ever waged war against wiry squirrels and other ‘nasties in the garden’. In it, Wareham shares her experiences and ingenious tips for getting the upper hand with creatures great and small, even advising on when there’s no alternative but to fly the white flag!

Horticulturist and TV presenter Toby Buckland launches a new garden festival in the ‘Capability’ Brown-designed grounds of 18thcentury Bowood House in Wiltshire, from 5–6 June. Tickets from £10 (

Summer shower Wild & Wolf was allowed access to the V&A archives for this mid-century modern Palamos pattern, in a 1950s palette of mustard and turquoise, to grace its new gardening range. Watering can, 5ltrs, £34.95, Bloomsbury Store. (


Can I lift and keep any of my winter/spring bedding plants?


The simple answer is that it depends on the plant involved. Many are simply ‘spent’ after the effort of flowering, but a few spring favourites, such as polyanthus and other primulas, can be lifted and replanted as soon as they finish flowering. Make sure that the new site has rich, moist but welldrained soil, so they quickly re-establish.


Can the bulbs I planted out last autumn be moved?

If these are spring-blooming bulbs, such as hyacinths, tulips or narcissi, it is easy to move them. Wait until the foliage has turned yellow, then carefully dig them up. Leave the soil on them at first and let them dry in a shady spot for a few days, then store them in a cool, dry place before replanting them in autumn.


Is June the best time to lift spring bulbs or can I wait until autumn?

While June is a good time to dig up spring-flowering bulbs, it is restricted to early bloomers, such as daffodils. These can be lifted around six weeks after they finish blooming, by which time the foliage will have died back. The simple rule of thumb, though, is that if it hasn’t done so, then wait longer so as to let the bulb build up some food reserves. Don’t delay too long, however, as the withering foliage means you can still see where they are growing; there is less of a chance of damaging them if they can easily be found. Later-blooming bulbs will have to wait a bit longer, whereas hardy, summer-flowering bulbs, such as lilies, should be dug, moved and replanted in early autumn.

Mick is a gardening writer and senior lecturer in horticulture at Writtle College JUNE 2015 83

GARDEN LIFE Visit us at the

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A path through an arch covered with climbing beans leads past the raised beds in the potager to the elegant glasshouse. The path incorporates a Gertrude Jekyll-inspired feature, made from tiles and six flowerpots embedded into cement

ISLAND Paradise Susan and Noel Dobbs have created a vibrant cottage garden, full of exotic interest and creative ideas, at their home on the Isle of Wight Words JEAN VERNON Photographs HEATHER EDWARDS JUNE 2015 85

Key facts A pretty cottage garden by the sea, on the north-east coast of the Isle of Wight, combining formal period style with slightly exotic planting SIZE 400m2 ASPECT North-east facing SOIL After 15 years of enriching it with homemade compost, the soil is now mostly neutral OWNERS Susan and Noel Dobbs, who have lived here since 2005 DATE OF HOUSE The property dates back to 1640 and was bought as a row of four cottages by Noel’s grandparents for £500 in 1927 OPEN For 2015 the garden is open for the National Gardens Scheme charity by appointment only ( CHARACTER


he story of Dracula seems an unlikely association with the pretty cottage garden tucked behind the whitewashed Salterns Cottage in Seaview, on the Isle of Wight. Yet it was Noel Dobbs’ great-grandfather, Bram Stoker, who penned that chilling tale, and it was the sale of the film rights to the story that funded the early renovation of the house and garden, bought by Noel’s grandparents in 1927. The property passed down the generations, and when Noel and his wife Susan moved to the island from Wimbledon, in 2005, Susan set to work redesigning the garden, with a scheme inspired by her own childhood and her family links to Sissinghurst, Kent, where her parents were married. To hone her horticultural skills, she signed up for an RHS correspondence course at Ventnor

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Botanic Garden, ‘where I learned so much about gardening,’ she says. Now the chairman of the Isle of Wight Gardens Trust and the proud recipient of the Sir Harold Hillier Award for services to the Isle of Wight gardens, Susan’s own plot complements the period cottage and helps to satisfy her love of plants. Inspired by Beth Chatto, she has included many species that will withstand drought and drying winds, such as leathery-leaved phormium, sisyrinchium and arbutus. Packed beds full of perennials and shrubs now thickly shroud the garden boundaries, with a sprinkling of small trees and a few garden exotics that thrive in the warmer climes of this island spot, such as a New Zealand tea tree. Roses are a particular favourite. ‘Noel’s grandmother loved the roses,’ says Susan, ‘but the flowers never lasted longer than July, when they got blackspot. You


ABOVE A view of the garden is enjoyed from the shaded patio, which is flanked by a summer border populated with geraniums, Scabiosa columbaria, roses, and Leptospermum scoparium ‘Burgundy Queen’ LEFT Planters filled with an eclectic mix of plants separate the terrace from the lawn JUNE 2015 87

BOTTOM, LEFT TO RIGHT A pumpkin decorated with feathers is used to deter the birds from the potager; euphorbia, New Zealand tea tree, phormium and Verbena bonariensis combine in the border to present a varied palette; the garden shed is painted in a summery pastel shade of blue

Inside the glasshouse is a healthy mix of productive and pleasure plants: herbs, tomatoes, and citrus trees dripping with fruit

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Gardens Gardens

really need to feed roses and forget about treating them for diseases or worrying about pruning.’ The roses are now skirted with nepeta, which makes a perfect partnership. ‘Nepeta does well here, but it grows faster than the roses, so we have to cut it back hard. I give it the Chelsea chop – pruning it in late May – and it is tall again by August, but by then at least the roses are taller, as they don’t like to be swamped,’ says Susan. The terrace by the house provides an alfresco dining area for summer meals and impromptu gatherings of friends. It is divided from the lawn by a low wall, topped with a collection of period planters filled with pelargoniums, plectranthus and an eclectic assortment of flowers. Paths of roughly hewn stone lead down the garden to the potager, which is divided into four productive raised beds bursting with herbs and vegetables; the wood borders are weathered silver from salt-laden winds. These fresh ingredients

fuel Susan’s passion for cooking and produce a delicious living larder throughout the season. Elegant, galvanised arches support a healthy crop of beans, including the prolific ‘White Lady’ runner beans with their pretty flowers, Borlotti, and the climbing French ‘Cobra’ bean. Huge clumps of colourful red ‘Vulcan’ chard provide crisp and crunchy stems, baby leaves for salads, and a wonderful alternative to spinach without the associated problems of bolting in hot weather – a real concern in this island hotspot. Susan makes great use of other leafy edibles, too. Big red mustard leaves add heat and bulk, while peppery wild rocket, aromatic and richly flavoured herbs, and a fantastic array of ‘cut and come again’ salad leaves all add texture and interest. Plus there are plenty of edible flowers, such as calendula, lavender and nasturtiums. In the centre of the potager, within the gravel path, a tribute to Gertrude Jekyll created with

ABOVE The selection of plants growing in the glasshouse includes streptocarpus, Strelitzia reginae and pelargoniums OPPOSITE, TOP LEFT An ornate bird feeder is a decorative feature and entices wildlife into the garden JUNE 2015 89

In the area This little gem of a garden specialises in Islegrown alpines, perennials and dry garden plants. Tel: 07837 589478; NO. 1 WHITE COTTAGES A garden in nearby Bembridge, awash with daylilies and an eclectic mix of grasses and perennials. 109 High Street, Bembridge, Isle of Wight PO35 5SF. CASTLE HOUSE ST HELENS This large garden overlooking the harbour is open for the Red Cross on 20 June ( get-involved/events/open-gardens) and also on 28 June, 2-5pm, for the Secret Gardens of St Helens EDDINGTON HOUSE NURSERY

ABOVE Scabiosa columbaria has pale lavender-coloured flowerheads in summer and early autumn TOP RIGHT Citrus plants, tomatoes and herbs growing in the glasshouse ABOVE RIGHT The Solent is visible from the end of the garden

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flowerpots and rays of garden tiles is Susan’s pride and joy. ‘I copied the flowerpot design that Jekyll used on paths, made from six flowerpots one inside the other,’ she explains. ‘You make a hole in the ground, put in the largest flowerpot, add some cement and then put the next largest inside it, continuing with increasingly smaller pots.’ The result is a beautiful, subtle feature. A raised glasshouse takes centre stage, the elevation protecting it against the floods that occasionally submerge the rest of the garden. The elegant, period-style design by Alitex has a potting

shed at the rear to make a practical arrangement. Complete with exterior shade blinds that protect the plants from excess sun, it also has two doors, creating a flow of air – essential on hot island days. Inside the glasshouse there’s a healthy mix of productive and pleasure plants: tomatoes, herbs, and citrus trees dripping with fruit. It’s a mini nursery of seedlings, cuttings and young plants, nurtured to fill Susan’s garden, share with friends and embellish her menus. It’s a private paradise and a practical, inspiring haven at the heart of this creative outdoor space.


Garden advice

A strawberry tree (with reddish bark) in the summer border has pale, bell-shaped flowers, and produces red, strawberry-like fruits in autumn

Susan’s garden is full of ideas and fun elements to entertain and educate her seven grandchildren: ❋ little glass rain funnels collect water, providing a drinking station for birds; ❋ bird tables and feeders support the garden wildlife and create a fresh, dynamic dimension to enthrall visitors of all ages; ❋ the immaculate lawn provides a canvas for childhood games, somewhere safe to play and a soft landing for acrobatic exertions; ❋ an impromptu but permanent treasure hunt of little ornaments and sculptures dotted around the garden is ready to be discovered by inquisitive little helpers; ❋ the living larder of garden edibles provides a classroom for students of all ages. JUNE 2015 91

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Spotlight on…

The art of

The key to using different hues, tints, shades and tones is to understand their history and the effect they have on us, says Katherine Sorrell Grass is green and the sky is blue. Or are they? The first thing we need to know about colour is that it doesn’t actually exist. We simply perceive it (via our brains, by the way, not our eyes) according to how much the wavelengths of light are absorbed or reflected by different objects. Yet this perception of colour influences almost every aspect of our lives, from acting as a signal or a warning – consider poisonous red berries, for example – to evoking a desired atmosphere, and even affecting our emotions. In short, colour is at the heart of our very existence. ‘Man started to make use of colour in the Palaeolithic era, about 35,000 years ago,’ says Edward Bulmer, designer, architectural historian and creator of Pots of Paint, a natural paint range. Stone-age man made cave paintings in which earth pigments were mixed with a liquid – the nearest thing to hand, perhaps a resin from a plant or tree, or water, or size from rendering JUNE 2015 93

The c�l�ur wheel The colour wheel demonstrates how colours relate to one another. It is divided into segments showing the primary, secondary, tertiary and sometimes further colours, rather like a rainbow that has been curved so that the ends join together. ‘Some colour wheels also demonstrate how adding black (to make a shade), white (to make a tint) or grey (to make a tone) affect the appearance of pure colour, or hue,’ says Diana McKnight, director of studies at the KLC School of Design. Colours that are adjacent to or opposite each other on the wheel will co-ordinate, sometimes unexpectedly, such as fuchsia with crimson, lime green with pink, or blue with orange. Triadic colours, located at three equidistant points on the wheel, forming a triangle (for example, violet, orange and green), are also harmonious, says McKnight. More straightforwardly, darker and lighter tints or shades of the same colour always work well together, so you might use a range of blues – from palest duck egg to strong navy. Paint charts work in a similar way – you can work either across or down the rows to combine colours successfully.

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‘Studies show that colour has a direct, physical effect on us, so consider the feeling you want to create within a space, whether it is restful (blues, greens and violets) or dynamic (reds, oranges and yellows that stimulate and excite)’ Diana McKnight, director of studies at the KLC School of Design


down bones. ‘The history of colour is really the history of mankind,’ he explains. ‘We use colour to protect and to decorate. For example, you might paint yourself with goad to look scary, or you might portray yourself in a particular way to exaggerate your status.’ For many centuries, the most widely used natural pigments were extracted from soil and rocks, plants, insects (cochineal, for instance) and animals (that distinctive Suffolk pink was made by diluting whitewash with bull’s blood). Ash and chalk were also basics. At a price, however, it was possible for strong, bright pigments or dyes to be extracted from other sources. Ultramarine blue, for example, came from ground lapis lazuli gemstones, and was once more expensive than gold (hence in art it was often reserved for painting the robes of Mary and the infant Christ), while Tyrian purple required 10,000 boiled snails to produce one gram of dye, and was used for fabrics worn only by kings, queens and emperors. Historically, the use of colour was governed by its ease of availability, and, therefore, its cost. The richest colours were reserved for the most important parts of religious and royal interiors – the chancel of a church or a king’s throne room. In the Georgian period, for instance, the ‘common’ colours that were inexpensive and widely available included stone and timber shades, greys and whites – in the form of distemper and white lead. Middle-class households could often afford the slightly more expensive oil colours, such as ‘drab’ (dull brownish-grey), olive, pea green and sky blue. More expensive shades included pink, lemon, orange and straw, while the most costly were verdigris, ultramarine and smalt, a glittering blue. It was household income, on the whole, that determined how colourful a home could be, and the great majority of interiors, Edward Bulmer notes, were painted in simple, neutral colours, with perhaps just some of the best rooms painted in blue or green. Everything changed from the early-19th century, however, when chemists, spurred on by the industrialisation of textile production, began to develop

Spotlight on…

LEFT Rich shades and pattern in the library at Brodsworth Hall, a mid-Victorian property in Doncaster, South Yorkshire, open through English Heritage BELOW LEFT William Morris only used arsenic in four early designs: Indian, Fruit, Trellis and Daisy. This image shows an original log book from the archive, where arsenic was used in the Fruit design BELOW RIGHT Intricate plasterwork, and paint from Little Greene, at Audley End House, a Jacobean mansion in Saffron Walden, Essex BOTTOM Medieval half-timbered cottages in Lavenham, Suffolk, showing the traditional ‘Suffolk pink’ in use OPPOSITE TOP An example of a primitive cave painting, made using earth pigments mixed with liquids that were easy to obtain OPPOSITE BOTTOM The Annunciation, circa 19th century, by Josef Kastner the younger, from the Muttergotteskirche church in Vienna. Historically, ultramarine blue was expensive to create, so in art was reserved for painting the robes of Mary and Jesus

‘Always think about light before choosing your colours. It can change everything. Paints with natural pigments will produce colours that are calmer and better for English light’ Nick Ronald, creative director at Grand Illusions Vintage Paint JUNE 2015 95

synthetic pigments, and the price of ‘colour’ began to fall. Many new colours were developed and older ones were improved – athough there were some exceptions to that rule. Emerald green, for example, which was commercially available from 1814 to the early 1900s, was based on arsenic, and fumes from wallpaper – including designs created by William Morris – printed with the ink had the potential to be deadly. The new Victorian colour palette included bottle greens, gold, burgundy, crimson, rose, violet and mahogany, as well as intense, chemical yellows, blues and greens – the results of the invention of aniline dye colours used first for wallpapers and textiles, and then for paints. Stronger colours were mostly used for rooms deemed ‘important’, while white and lighter shades were considered more appropriate for bedrooms. Deeper colours also helped to hide the sooty residue produced by oil lamps, which had, by this time, more or less replaced the use of candles. In a reaction to these bold Victorian colours, perhaps unsurprisingly, Edwardian tones became softer and paler and, ever since, colour has closely followed the rollercoaster of fashion as well as inevitable scientific advances: from the ‘greenery-yallery’ of the Aesthetic movement to the brilliant white produced by the introduction of titanium dioxide in 1916, and from the sorbet colours of the 1950s right through to the on-trend greys, teals and neutrals of 2015. These days, ready-made paint colours are inspired by historical periods, fashion themes, travel, architecture, the natural world – or you can have them specially mixed to any shade you desire. In addition, textiles, wallpapers, plastics, floor coverings – you name it – are available in all the colours of the rainbow, and infinitely more. Today, it’s fair to say that the world of colour has no limits.

C�l�urful facts In the 19th century, it was common for boys to be dressed in pink, as it was considered a ‘strong’ colour, and girls in ‘daintier’ blue. The sky appears blue because as light passes through the air it is scattered by gases and particles – and the shorter wavelength of blue light means it is scattered more than other colours. Experiments conducted by American colour theorist Faber Birren found that blue can lower a person’s breathing rate and reduce their blood pressure. Tests have demonstrated that people estimate the temperature in a room painted red as up to six degrees higher than in a blue room. In colour theory, black is the absence of colour, while white is the blending of all colours. That’s why, when light rays are bent by certain atmospheric conditions, you can see a rainbow.

In the early 1980s, psychologists performed an experiment in which prison cells were painted pink. They found the aggressive prisoners became calmer as a result. 19th-century German composer Richard Wagner felt so inspired by the colour purple that he wrote his operas in a room decorated with shades of violet. In one scientific study, the reaction speed of participants increased by 12 per cent when they were in a room lit with red light. Green is said to alleviate stress and negativity – hence why theatres and TV studios have a ‘green room’ in which guests and performers can relax. Izamal in Mexico is known as the Yellow City because most of its buildings are painted egg-yolk yellow. Black on yellow is the most high-visibility colour combination.

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‘Use yellow with caution. It can be very tricky to live with as your brain will overemphasise the yellowness, and some yellow emulsions, in particular, can appear very harsh’ Nick Ronald, creative director at Grand Illusions Vintage Paint

OPPOSITE TOP Use pastels for a summery feel. From left: Pale Leaf; Kingly Grey; Dusky Rose; Green Shoot; Dusty Lilac, all £39 for 2.5ltrs matt emulsion, Sanderson ABOVE LEFT Mix bright hues for a cheerful look. Tabletop painted in Sky Grey; legs painted in Empire Gold, both £48.50 for 2.5ltrs of water-based eggshell, Sanderson. Chair painted in Hicks’ Blue, £53 for 2.5ltrs intelligent eggshell, Little Greene ABOVE RIGHT Chalky finishes work beautifully in period living rooms. Cricket, £32.74 for 2.5ltrs claypaint, Earthborn FAR LEFT Soft yellow is a rejuvenating choice for bedrooms. Indian Yellow, £35.50 for 2.5ltrs matt emulsion, Fired Earth LEFT Make a statement with bold red. Carmine, £37 for 2.5ltrs absolute matt emulsion, Little Greene JUNE 2015 97


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Interiors The lighting in this dining room in a converted church is a vintage purchase and an interesting choice against the wallpaper, which reflects the owner’s passion for pattern and vintage

INTERIOR free spirit

With more than a nod to 1970s chic, the Bohemian Modern look, explains stylist Emily Henson, is where creativity and a wild mix of colour and pattern meet Photographs KATYA DE GRUNWALD / RYLAND PETERS & SMALL JUNE 2015 99

A Bohemian Modern home wouldn’t be complete without a collection or two. They are an authentic expression of what the homeowner holds dear. In this papaya-pink room, the cluster of pretty pastel-hued Chinese lanterns was picked up on a trip to New York’s Chinatown

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Interiors Interiors


I’ve always been drawn to vibrant colours and patterns. I still tend to choose colour over neutral and print over plain. When I think of a bohemian home, this is what springs to mind – very often it is a defining element. Whether they are introduced via textiles, paint, tiles or wallpaper, pattern and colour are great starting points for a room’s décor, and a foundation upon which to build a strong look. It’s worth remembering that choosing a colour story and trying to stick to it can make or break a room. A stripe, an ikat print and a chevron can live side by side if they are all in complementary shades of blue, grey and green, for example, but if each individual pattern is also in a different colour, it can feel too chaotic. You can mix together as many patterns as you want, as long as they share a similar group of colours. The flip side of this so-called rule is that ‘every colour in the rainbow’ is also a perfectly acceptable colour story in the Bohemian Modern home. Sometimes it works to go over the top, but be prepared for a lively home. If you can get the balance right, multicoloured craziness can work. Because I’m drawn to colour and pattern mostly through textiles, I prefer to keep my walls white or a very soft off-white shade. It means that I can alter the whole look of a room just by changing the cushions, curtains or bedlinen. But you may prefer to bathe yourself in every imaginable shade of blue, green, pink and yellow, in which case forgo the neutral base altogether and paint your walls in clashing colours. When viewed side by side, rooms painted in different colours are great fun, and when patterns are layered on top it can be a winning look, as long as you exercise a little restraint. Paint can have a huge impact on a space and it’s relatively inexpensive and easy to do it yourself. If coating your walls in vivid colours feels like a step too far, try painting one piece of furniture in a dramatic shade, and preferably in a high-gloss or lacquer finish, to keep it modern.

ABOVE LEFT A vibrant mix of patterned pillows – some handmade and some store-bought – livens up a plain bed ABOVE RIGHT In this open-plan living space, a feminine floral rug is the perfect contrast to a pop of yellow on the freestanding ‘wall’. Hidden within the yellow panelling are the utility pipes for a kitchen below LEFT Despite its bright hue, the yellow clock case provides a quiet moment within a fun jumble of pattern and colour. The chairs have been upholstered in a collection of colourful old jumpers by the homeowner’s mother JUNE 2015 101




A basket of fabric holds endless possibilities for me. Textiles are at the heart of the Bohemian Modern home, whether plain and textured or patterned and fringed. There are so many ways to bring textiles into the home, from the obvious choices of rugs and cushions to less-expected ones, such as wall hangings and children’s teepees. Re-imagining uses for textiles is important, too: rugs don’t only belong on the floor; a sheepskin or kilim will make an effective cover-up for a worn armchair or can add colour and comfort to a plain sofa. By layering cushions in varying patterns and textures, you can create an inviting and eclectic place to hunker down with a book. A striking rug can also become a focal point when displayed on a wall. Hung above a sofa or on a blank wall, it’s an easy way to elevate a room. Whether you sew or not, fabric bought by the metre has so much potential. It’s worth learning even the most basic stitch, as it opens up a world of possibilities in DIY interiors. If you don’t want to learn, it’s easy enough to find someone to do the work for you. There are also plenty of no-sew ways to use textiles, such as stapling or even just tucking fabric over a tired seat or draping a tapestry over a chair back. You can also stretch some on to a canvas or frame it, creating instant wall art. Every home should have a stash of textiles on hand for when a quick update is needed.

‘Styling your favourite bits and pieces can be a nice way to add life to forgotten areas. Pay attention to wasted spaces in your home and re-imagine their uses’ OPPOSITE By restricting the colour palette to orange and yellow, various patterns and textures have been successfully mixed here CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT It would be easy to replicate this appliquéd chevron design on a plain blanket or cushion; the walls of this bedroom are kept white to offset the many patterned textiles, including the headboard slipcover made from vintage fabric; a juju hat – a feathered headdress from Cameroon – adorns the wall above a set of cushions made from antique kilim rugs JUNE 2015 103



There is something about plants that brings a room to life. They have a transformative power when it comes to interiors. Houseplants have definitely made a comeback in recent years and they are a vital part of the Bohemian Modern home. There are so many easy-to-maintain options, from the waxy-leafed fig tree to cacti to a rosemary cutting, that anyone can enjoy a bit of indoor gardening. In the Bohemian Modern home, there are no rules when it comes to plants. A spiky aloe vera can sit next to trailing ivy and glossy ficus. I tend to go for the ‘more is more’ approach, lining windowsills, mantelpieces and the tops of cabinets with pots. But one big sculptural potted tree works just as well. Succulents and cacti are good options if you won’t remember to water them as often as you should. And if you really feel that you are an incurable plant killer, there are some very convincing fakes available nowadays. Almost as important as the plants are the containers in which they sit. You can’t go wrong with simple terracotta, which suits a boho home really well, but for a more modern look, go for concrete planters or colourful woven baskets in geometric patterns. Or try your hand at a macramé hanging basket. Anything can become a vessel for plants – from seaside buckets to large vegetable oil drums. Once you start looking, you will find original plant pot ideas everywhere. Whatever you choose, whether real or artificial plants, macramé or concrete pots, plants will be the icing on your home – the final layer that makes it feel complete and alive. 104 JUNE 2015

ABOVE LEFT The cane chairs and floral armchair already give this room a sense of the outdoors, but with the addition of so much plant life, it begins to feel like an exotic greenhouse ABOVE RIGHT A small display case anchors a nature-themed collection RIGHT A found table, which has been painted grey, holds a selection of plants and books


This is an edited extract from Bohemian Modern by Emily Henson, with photographs by Katya de Grunwald (£19.99, Ryland Peters & Small). To purchase a copy for the special price of £13.99, including free postage and packing, call Macmillan Direct on 01256 302699, quoting reference GLR CM6

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Out & About

Guided tour of...

Blenheim Palace A gift to a military hero from a grateful queen and nation, this 18th-century Baroque masterpiece also served as a triumphal monument, and centuries later it was the birthplace of another wartime leader – Winston Churchill Words RACHEL CROW Photographs COURTESY OF BLENHEIM PALACE

A OUR GUIDE: Karen Wiseman Karen has been head of education at Blenheim Palace for more than eight years. ‘Every letter or document I read from the archives, I learn something new about its story,’ she says.

t Blenheim Palace I took two very important decisions: to be born and to marry,’ once wrote Sir Winston Churchill. The grandson of the 7th Duke and Duchess of Marlborough, and cousin of the 9th Duke, Churchill was born at Blenheim in 1874. This June, to mark the 50th anniversary of the death of this great British Prime Minister, and commemorate the salient years in his career, a new Memorial Garden will be unveiled at his birthplace. But the victory of another national hero at battle is where the history of this World Heritage Site begins. A first reminder of this triumphal legacy is the sight of Grinling Gibbons’ stone statues of the heroic lions of England savaging the cockerels of France atop the colonnades of the Clock Tower Arch. This was a victorious architectural celebration of the country’s then newly won supremacy over the French in the War of the Spanish Succession. The military commander John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough, led the Allied forces to success at the Battle of Blenheim in 1704, thwarting France’s ambitions to rule Europe, and changing ‘the political axis of the world’. As a reward, Queen Anne granted

him the royal manor and park at Woodstock, plus funds to build a victorious monument and home. Sir John Vanbrugh was the architect chosen to realise this vision, and he drew on the symbolism and ornamentation of the Baroque style in the design of the palace; his aim: to rival Versailles. Why was Woodstock chosen as a gift? Behind the scenes were the manipulations of the Duchess Sarah. She was very close friends with Queen Anne and when the news came back of the great success at Blenheim, the Queen first suggested rewarding the Duke with a statue in London, but Sarah didn’t want that. There followed offers from the Queen of a London residence, or an entire square gifted in perpetuity, both of which Sarah declined. She wanted an estate, so the Queen agreed to gift Woodstock. The Duke employed Vanbrugh as architect, despite the Duchess hating his plans for the house – she preferred Christopher Wren’s more typically Georgian style. The implication was that the Queen would pay for it all, but the Marlboroughs fell from royal favour in 1711, so had to finish Blenheim with their own money. Sarah refused to JUNE 2015 107

pay the royal rates, however, so most of the master craftsmen walked off site. Vanbrugh also left in a rage in 1716, citing ‘intolerable treatment’ by the Duchess – infamous for her fiery character. The Duke died in 1722, before the house was finished, but the Duchess continued it in his honour, completing it in 1737. It is one of the few great houses that has not been altered, and remains structurally the same as when it was built. Does any original decoration remain? The magnificent ceiling in the Great Hall, painted by Sir James Thornhill, and the wall and ceiling murals in the Saloon, by Louis Laguerre, are original decorations. Elsewhere, there is evidence of different colour palettes chosen by subsequent duchesses. Caroline, who married the 4th Duke, loved pale lemons and greens, as reflected in the Green Drawing Room, whereas the Red Drawing Room is more Victorian, from the time of the 7th Duchess. The original wall fabrics in here were beyond restoration, so Lady Henrietta, sister of the 12th Duke, had a match woven. 108 JUNE 2015

PREVIOUS PAGE The majestic Water Terraces on the west front of Blenheim Palace were created by the 9th Duke CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT Ornate Boulle furniture and a Savonnerie carpet grace the Third State Room, and above the fireplace is a portrait of the 1st Duke of Marlborough with Colonel Armstrong, by Enoch Seeman; Sir James Thornhill’s painted ceiling in the Great Hall depicts the 1st Duke kneeling to Britannia, proffering a plan of the Battle of Blenheim – the rich stone carvings are by Grinling Gibbons; the fiery 1st Duchess Sarah filed 400 lawsuits in her lifetime; part of the private apartments is open to visitors; gardeners line up in 1925, ready to dig and build the Water Terraces

What about the furnishings and collections? There isn’t much left from the time of the 1st Duke, although the most important items are the tapestries: the Alexander the Great, Art of War and Duke’s Victories collections. The last were specific to the 1st Duke and depict his major victories. We try to send one tapestry a year for cleaning and restoration. Pieces from the collection have come to the palace in different ways. One Meissen porcelain service was gifted to the 3rd Duke by the King of Poland, in return for some staghounds. The story goes that the Duke only sent dogs, no bitches, so the King couldn’t breed them, and of course they were trained in English... Different generations have sold things, too. The 5th and 6th Dukes spent too much money and left the family finances in a parlous state, while the 7th Duke had to sell the original Sunderland Library to make ends meet. The 8th Duke, in turn, needed money to pursue scientific experiments – he was obsessed with new technology and built a power station here – so he sold a fabulous collection of paintings, including Van Dycks and Reubens.

Out & About



Which generations made the greatest contribution to the collections and upkeep? The 9th Duke solved the financial problem by marrying well to Consuelo Vanderbilt, a wealthy American, or ‘dollar princess’ – it was effectively an arranged marriage. Until then the estate was really struggling and had been running at a loss, but following the marriage there was a massive period of restoration and redecoration. He had the servants’ quarters updated, bought the existing 10,000 volume library collection, and built the magnificent gardens. In Consuelo’s book, The Glitter and the Gold, she gives the impression that he wasn’t a very generous man, but he was, without his wife knowing. There are boxes and boxes of letters from tenants of the villages, thanking him for helping with doctors’ fees, education, letting them off rent for a quarter, and so forth. He gave all of the village children a summer treat, where they were invited to the palace, entertainment was laid on, and they each got a gift. More recently, the palace has a fairly sizeable budget each year for restorations, but it’s a little like painting the Forth Bridge. How much time did Winston Churchill spend at the palace during his lifetime? One story of his birth is that his mother, Lady Randolph Churchill, was dancing at St Andrew’s Ball and this induced pains, so she was brought to the small bedroom just off the Great Hall, where she gave birth. However, there is also a letter written by Randolph, where it states that she’d had a ‘rough and imprudent ride and fell’, which brought on the pains. As a child, Winston led a peripatetic life; sometimes he was at Blenheim, at other times

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT The intricate Blenheim Tapestry was commissioned by the 1st Duke; in this Grinling Gibbons sculpture, the Lion of England assaults the cockerel of France; various nations of the world are reflected in the Saloon wall paintings, while the ceiling shows the 1st Duke in victorious progress; Winston Churchill with his cousin and friend the 9th Duke

with his grandparents at Carlton House Terrace in London– rarely was he with his parents. As part of the family, he could come and go as he pleased, and was good friends with his cousin the 9th Duke. Winston proposed to Clementine in 1908 in the Temple of Diana in the grounds, and they started their honeymoon at Blenheim. He enjoyed painting here and we still have some of his pictures of the Palace. It was an important place for him, and it is believed one could draw a straight line from the Column of Victory through the Palace to St Martin’s Church, Bladon, where he’s buried.

Visiting information Blenheim Palace is open daily, 10.30am–5.30pm, until 20 December. Admission (palace, park and gardens): adults, £22.50; children, £12.30; family (two adults, two children), £59. Tours of the private apartments (open until September) cost extra. There is a new ‘Walk in Churchill’s Footsteps’ tour around the estate, and The Churchill Memorial Gardens, where key moments in his life will be traced on a granite walk, open mid-June. Woodstock, Oxfordshire OX20 1PP. Tel: 01993 810530; JUNE 2015 109

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❋ Renovation ❋ Property ❋ Salvage ❋ Buyer’s Guides


Shop for the latest renovation products, plus our expert advises on maintaining sash windows


Turn your space into a luxurious retreat with our round up of classically styled beds, furniture and flooring



From a gypsy caravan to a tin tabernacle, discover unique rooms for your garden



Take inspiration from some of the best designs to create a functional and inviting space for all the family JUNE 2015 111

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Property know-how

Discover some of the latest home-renovation products and pick up top tips from our panel of experts


Colour confidence

Encaustic tiles – where an impressed pattern is created in a different coloured clay – once adorned the floors of palaces and grand houses. Ca’Pietra has launched a new range of tiles using this technique, where coloured cement is inlaid in the body of the tile for a long-lasting result. With designs from graphic geometrics to delicate florals, there is a choice to suit all styles. The Toulouse, pictured, costs £3.40 per tile. (0844 915 0002;

Combine the newest shades from Edward Bulmer Pots of Paint for a mix of classic and contemporary styles. The recipe for Fawn, a soft beige seen here on the walls, was supplied to the Brighton Pavilion in 1803, while the bath is painted in the metropolitan-inspired Slate. From £40 for 2.5ltrs of natural emulsion. (

Add an enduring element to your bathroom with the Cooke & Lewis Timeless chrome bath mixer, £102 from B&Q (


What kind of maintenance should I carry out on sash windows? John Carey, managing director of Totali, says: ‘All sash windows are manufactured to be dismantled for ongoing repairs through their lifetime. Timber: Check this over annually to see if there are any signs of moisture ingress or rotting. Deal with this straight away using a local joinery or specialist wood repair company. Paint and coatings: If there are areas where the coating protection – paint

or oil – has been compromised, apply a new level of protection to stop any moisture ingress and also to reduce the effect of UV rays from the sun. Glazing: Often sashes are single glazed with external putty pointing.

Check the integrity of the putty to ensure there are no cracks. Cut out any cracked putty and replace with new. Linseed is the traditional putty, but there are many silicone, acrylic or butyl alternatives available. Weather seals: Retrofit new draught seals to old, draughty windows. Ironmongery and operation: Employ a specialist to check or replace the sash cords, pulleys and weights.’ LEFT Totali supplies a range of timber sash windows, all available with either traditional cords and weights or spiral spring operating methods, POA (0333 323 9601; JUNE 2015 113

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Range Cooker

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Home Solutions Featuring Edwardianinspired cabinetry, a bench-style dining table, antique mirror splashbacks and granite worktops, this bespoke kitchen-diner by Lewis Alderson is practical and luxurious. From £36,000, excluding appliances (0845 474 0854;




uying a new kitchen is one of the biggest investments you will make in your home. It’s also one of the main spaces where your family will spend time together, so it makes sense to carefully plan every detail to ensure the design will work for you. The new kitchen’s functionality is key to its success, and layout plays a vital role in this. Of course, each family has its own needs, but open-plan kitchen-diners that seamlessly merge practical cooking areas with living and social spaces work well for many households.

The key to creating a heart of the home where everyone congregates is to balance practical areas with social spaces. Pippa Blenkinsop shares the best traditional designs

Inevitably, the room size will have a big impact on your layout. If space allows, opting for a central island incorporating a work area and breakfast bar is a fantastic option for achieving the sought-after cook/ socialise balance, offering somewhere for family and guests to perch and chat while you prepare food. It’s also the perfect layout if you need to keep a watchful eye on children playing or doing their homework. Available in all shapes, sizes and styles, kitchen islands not only serve to subtly zone the space, but also provide extra worktop and storage areas. Having JUNE 2015 115

LEFT This Artisan kitchen by John Lewis of Hungerford features fitted cabinetry, from £25,000 for a full kitchen. A freestanding doubledrawer work table, H120x W91xD65cm, costs from £1,776, and a small solid table, H91xW120xD65cm, is from £1,369 (0700 278 4726; BELOW British Standard’s modular units can be configured in numerous ways and come primed ready for painting. Full cabinetry costs from around £7,000, with individual units starting at £400 (020 7870 7688; british

appliances built into an island unit is a great way to achieve an effective work triangle design, where the fridge, sink and cooker are placed no further than six metres apart in a triangular configuration, so that all are close to hand while cooking. If flexibility is a priority, then a freestanding island or butcher’s trolley, which can be easily moved out to open up space for entertaining, is best. Freestanding larders and pantries are becoming increasingly popular for storage, and they help contribute to a vintage look. For smaller rooms, creating a kitchen-cumliving space is more challenging, but can be achieved through careful spatial design. For example, if faced with a cramped, narrow room, limiting cabinetry to just one side of it will free up enough space to accommodate a family dining table – opting for an extendable model will further make the most of the space. In any kitchen, storage is key, but for busy families it’s even more so. Maximise every inch of space by fitting nifty storage solutions such as carousels, pull-out larders, and deep drawers. If you have young children, safety will be a priority, so opt for child locks or soft-closing drawers and cupboards to prevent the trapping of little fingers. Finally, when it comes to style, Shaker continues to be the stand-out favourite for period homes, and with its adaptable, timeless design, it’s easy to see why. Many companies offer a huge range of in-house door colours, but most will also supply primed units ready for painting in your preferred shade. If you decide to go down the DIY route, use an eggshell paint for an easy-to-clean finish. Using different colours on multiple cabinets can help to break up a large run of furniture, add personality, and help to zone the space. 116 JUNE 2015

Home Solutions

TOP LEFT The star of this bespoke Shaker kitchen by Thomas & Thomas is the multifunctional island with tongue-andgroove panelling, built-in appliances and chopping blocks. Kitchens can be handpainted in any colour and are priced from £42,000, excluding appliances (01235 851144; TOP RIGHT Featuring solid oak frames with Shaker-style veneered doors, the Cotswood kitchen from Crown Imperial is available in 21 finishes including this on-trend greeny-blue, and is priced from around £15,000 for cabinetry only (01227 742424; LEFT This kitchen by Christopher Peters features an island painted in Farrow & Ball’s Culuna. Prices for a similar design start from around £30,000 (01926 832511;

LEFT This handleless white gloss kitchen from Wren’s Designer range is perfect for achieving a simple, contemporary look in a period home, and comes with softclose drawers and doors as standard, around £1,699 for cabinetry only ( RIGHT 1909’s half-pencil and scalloped Shaker cabinetry, shown in a mix of Charcoal and Partridge Grey chalk-painted finishes, costs from £20,000 for a complete kitchen (01325 505539; JUNE 2015 117

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Home Solutions

A four-poster is perfect for generously proportioned rooms with high ceilings. This Reeded bed in mahogany is £5,500 for a H230cm double, and the Marshall & Stewart handmade mattress costs from £3,500, both Simon Horn (020 7731 3555;

How to create the perfect

BEDROOM Be inspired by the wide choice of beds, furniture and flooring available to create a comfortable and luxurious hideaway. Elizabeth Bailey selects the best designs for a period home, with options to suit every budget


esigning your perfect slumber chamber takes care and consideration. Gone are the days of mismatched furniture and saggy old mattresses. Our expectations for our bedrooms have increased, and in response to demand, retailers now offer a staggering choice of furniture, bedheads, mattress sizes, finishes and fillings. Always buy the best-quality mattress that your budget will allow. Some high-end bed manufacturers list hotels that use their beds, so you can even try before you buy! Upholstered headboards are currently in vogue and, although the price tag

may be quite hefty, they are a practical choice and less likely to date – simply change the fabric to suit a new room scheme. When it comes to furniture, deliberately mismatch new and old pieces to create a fashionable ‘I’ve just thrown this together’ look. If you’re after a more soothing style, choose a collection of pieces designed to complement one another – simply accessorise with vintage treasures to create a unique space. Don’t forget the flooring when making over the bedroom. If you live in a cold, draughty house, it makes sense to opt for carpet; however, wooden flooring needs less cleaning and is more hygienic if pets are permitted upstairs. JUNE 2015 119

Centrepiece beds ▲


A custom-made bed from Vi-Spring can be designed to accommodate any style of antique frame or headboard, as shown here, with corner cut-outs in the mattress to ensure it hugs the four-poster frame securely. Combination mattresses can be specified in soft/medium or medium/firm. From £2,870 for a king-size; headboards from £770; corner cut-outs from £185 per corner. (01752 366311;


The Sherbourne Latex 2000 handmade pocket-sprung mattress from Rest Assured’s Heritage collection features 2,000 springs and offers support across the whole sleeping surface. It has a premium, natural-latex pillow top layer, and the mattress cover eliminates mould and dust mites without chemicals. The sprung base has beech drawers. From £739 for a standard double. (01282 851111;


Feather & Black’s Versailles weathered oak bedstead has an elegant rattan caned headboard, which curves around the head of the bed. Available as king-size, £1,799, and super-king, £1,949, with mattresses sold separately, including bespoke pocket-sprung designs. (01243 380600;

120 JUNE 2015

Home Solutions


Let the bed take centre stage with the new upholstered Churchill linen design from And so to Bed. Here covered in Dana fabric by Manuel Canovas, its shapely frame is inspired by traditional wingback chairs. Priced from £9,000 for king-size, the bed is also available in super-king, emperor and large emperor, which is a generous W217cm. (0808 144 4343;


The Skandi Oak bedstead from Dunelm has a quirky 1950s influence, with its tapered legs and elegant headboard spindles. It’s made from natural oak, and is available as a double, £449.99, and king-size, £499.99, with matresses sold separately. Matching items, including a nightstand, chests, dressing table and wardrobe, are also available. (0345 165 6565;


Based on an Edwardian design, the Amelia four-poster from Wrought Iron & Brass Bed Company has a gleaming nickel finish and makes an angular contrast to distressed, rustic textures. From £1,430 for a single, up to £1,995 for a super-king-size, both H223.5cm. (01485 542516;

3 of the best upholstered headboards




Henley headboard in grey linen-effect fabric with deep-buttoned finish, available in double, £179, and king-size, £199, from Tesco Direct (0800 323 4050;

Brigitte headboard with a limewashed birch frame and linen fabric, £720 for king-size at The French Bedroom Company (01444 415430;

Eichholtz Boudoir Coco upholstered headboard in ecru linen fabric, H144xW200cm, £990, Occa-Home (0141 332 2890; JUNE 2015 121

Beautiful furniture ▲


Mirrored furniture helps to balance out a dark and muted colour scheme, and adds a glistening, refl ective quality to a bedroom

An elaborate painted metal bed frame is here beautifully complemented by the Marie collection of French-style furniture, from Marks & Spencer. Marie bedside chest, H60xW50xD45cm, £249; dressing table, mirror and stool set, H80xW134xD50cm, £799; chest of drawers, H124.5x W90xD50cm, £699; Clarisse steel bed frame in Antique Cream, from £399 for a double; mattress available separately. (0845 603 1603;


Give your bedroom a fresh look with simply styled white-painted pieces of furniture from the Ambriella collection at Furniture Village. Ambriella bed frame, from £539 for a single; three-plus-four chest of drawers, H95xW124xD43cm, £739; two-drawer bedside chest, H61xW53xD43cm, £269. (0800 804 8879;


A rustic-looking chest of drawers in a muted colour is a good investment buy for the bedroom, as it can be used in virtually any room in the house if there is a new decorative scheme planned. Oka’s Hopkirk chest is heavily distressed in a blue/green shade, with antiqued brass handles and elegant cabriole legs. Measuring H101xW102xD37cm, it’s priced £695. (0844 815 7380;

122 JUNE 2015

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3 of the best side tables


Handmade in solid weathered oak, Loaf’s Atelier wardrobe takes its inspiration from old armoires. H200xW114xD68cm, it costs £1,295. Pictured with Beni wool rug, W140xL200cm, £445, and Rocker chair, H92xW59xD95cm, £345. (0845 468 0698;


Highlands chest with a mix of six pine and cotton-covered ‘suitcase’ drawers, H84xW52x D29.5cm, £429, BHS (0344 411 6000;


If you prefer a low-key style that avoids traditional decorative pieces, go for a pared-down industrial design that can work with houses of all ages. Heal’s minimalist Brunel range in oak and powder-coated metal is designed by Rob Scarlett. Brunel king-size bed, £550; lean-to side table, H52xW45xD31cm, £95; bench with shelf, H44xW130xD40cm, £450; tall chest, H104x W46xD45cm, £595. (020 7896 7451;


Mia single-drawer side table in a green-grey painted finish, H65xW40xD45cm, £185, Alison at Home (020 7087 2900;


Utilise every inch of space by choosing fully fitted furniture. In this project by Sharps, Sherbourne bespoke built-in wardrobes were designed to perfectly fit the alcoves on either side of the fireplace, with cornicing added for a classic look. From £2,000 for a similar design including installation. (0800 035 6426;


Oficina Inglesa’s Van Sant bedside table is made to order in a choice of wood and painted finishes, H66xW56xD36cm, £1,032 (020 7226 4569; JUNE 2015 123

Home Solutions

Comfortable carpets SMOOTH AS SILK

For a soft, muted look that will change according to the light and the way the pile sits, consider Silk Touch from the Wools range by Kersaint Cobb. It’s made from a bamboopolyamide blend for a luxuriously soft finish, and is available in six colours, shown here in Tokyo, priced £40.99 per m2. (01675 430430;


Inject some colour, pattern – and fun – into your bedroom with Brintons’ Padstow Surf Spot carpet. The woven Axminster polkadot design is made from an extra hardwearing wool-nylon blend. Priced £75 per m2, it’s also available in Raspberry, Sherbert, Pistachio, Candy and Pebble colourways. (0800 505055;


Pattern is making a comeback in carpets, and the bedroom is the ideal space to experiment. Make sure the design includes a neutral colour to ground the look

This delicate, scrolled-pattern Dartmoor Filigree carpet is a good choice for a generously proportioned bedroom. The pale Winter Melody colour is space-enhancing, but the subtle pattern adds an element of interest. Woven from pure new wool for a super-plush feel underfoot, it’s priced around £80 per m2 at Axminster Carpets. (01297 32244;

124 JUNE 2015

Home Solutions


Sisal is a durable, organic grass floor covering that is a good option for the bedroom. It offers subtle colour variations, along with texture and pattern, and is a versatile design option. This Olympia Silver carpet, from the Sisal collection by Sisal & Seagrass, costs from £28 per m2. (020 8558 0887;


A carpet that combines natural tones with an element of texture will be a long-lasting backdrop to myriad colours, fabrics and wallpapers. Available in 12 easy-to-live-with shades (shown in Shoreline) and made from a textured wool-polypropylene blend, Cormar Carpets’ Living Naturals range is £22 per m2. (

▲ VELVET TOUCH Made from pure wool, the Seville Wilton Velvet carpet in Oatmeal from Jacaranda Carpets is a sophisticated choice. It’s available in six further colours, all £98 per m2, and made-to-measure rugs. (01536 762697;

3 of the best carpets


Fair Isle in Annie, from the Quirky B range by Margo Selby at The Alternative Flooring Company, is hand-woven from pure wool, £95.85 per m2 (01264 335111;


Satin Dream, from the Chenille range at Natural Elements Flooring, has yarn hoops and a tufted loop pile, in a woolpolyester blend, £69.75 per m2 (020 7394 5016;


Made from a pure wool loop pile for a heavy-duty finish, Biscayne Lemon is a fresh, trend-led carpet design, £73 per m2 at Crucial Trading (01562 743747; JUNE 2015 125

Home Solutions

Warm wood flooring


Oak flooring can seem an expensive choice for the bedroom, but if you’re working to a strict budget there are a number of realistic-looking laminates, which are warmer and softer underfoot than the real thing. The Nashville Oak design from UK Flooring Direct costs just £12 per m2, but don’t skimp on fitting – the joins must be perfect and edges crisp and tidy for a sophisticated look. The 0.8cm-thick boards measure W12xL120cm. (024 7601 2840;

With an embossed surface that emulates natural woodgrain, Carpetright’s Chelsea White Wash laminate flooring offers the look of painted floorboards. The light colour and narrow planks also give the illusion of more space. Supplied with a 25-year warranty, the 1cm-thick planks measure W11.6xL138cm and are priced £22.99 per m2. (0845 6045619;



Colourwashed and limed finishes provide the ideal foil for a neutral scheme. Quick-Step’s Limed Grey Oak hardwood engineered flooring, from the Palazzo range, has a matt finish for a sophisticated look. Measuring W19xL182cm, the 1.4cm-thick planks cost around £64.99 per m2 and come in a large selection of oak stains and finishes. (

FURTHER CONTACTS The Cotswold Company 0333 200 1725; House of Fraser 0345 602 1073; Silent Night 01282 813333; Hypnos 01844 348200;

126 JUNE 2015

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Buyer’s Guide

Quirky outdoor rooms

From a miniature iron chapel to a luxury treehouse, Pippa Blenkinsop shares 10 of the best characterful structures to enhance your garden


hether you’re after extra room to accommodate guests, an inspiring studio space, practical home office, playroom for youngsters, or simply somewhere to relax and recuperate, a garden room can provide the perfect solution. An off-the-peg summerhouse or shed is a standard option, but why not go for something really unique that will make a fun garden feature? Recent years have seen a boom in unusual holiday lets fitted with all the modern comforts you’d expect for ‘glamping’ getaways, with rentable retreats ranging from converted train carriages to state-of-the-art yurts. Many independent companies now offer intriguing structures in all shapes, sizes and

styles, complete with insulation, lighting, plumbing and heating, so that homeowners can enjoy the experience year-round in their own gardens. For vintage enthusiasts, there are also plenty of firms that specialise in replicas of antique structures, such as gypsy caravans and shepherds’ huts, which, made bespoke, can be customised to suit specific needs and enlarged from their poky originals in a way that won’t cramp their style. Whether planning permission is required will depend on the size and style of structure. Most single-storey designs will not need permission, but there are grey areas, such as treehouses, so it’s always best to check the facts with your local authority before buying. Visit for details.


SHEPHERD’S DELIGHT Originally designed as mobile shelters for shepherds guarding their flock, shepherd’s huts are now becoming popular as nostalgic garden retreats. This H290x W550xD215cm bespoke hut by Roundhill Shepherd Huts, around £31,200, is insulated, wired and comes with kitchen and bathroom areas, fitted furniture and soft furnishings. (01243 811447; JUNE 2015 129


LITTLE CHAPEL For the ultimate in quirky design, look no further than Love Lane Caravans’ tin tabernacles (above). Inspired by the prefabricated iron structures used as mission halls and chapels in the 19th century, the scaled-down, portable designs are built in Love Lane’s Cornish workshop using corrugated tin and reclaimed materials. Pictured is its latest H360xW500xD230cm model, £27,950, fully wired complete with salvaged windows, a porch, decorative bell spire and oak detailing. Available to buy from Lassco. (01844 277188;


VINTAGE-STYLE RETREAT If you love the charm of horsedrawn caravans but don’t want to compromise on comfort, a Fernhills French-style roulotte (above) may be for you. Insulated and wired as standard, this H320xW650xD230cm design, from £19,800, can be customised to include a kitchenette, bathroom, fixed double bed and pull-out daybed, making it ideal guest accommodation. Externally, the wagon is clad in painted Siberian larch, and features an extended balcony, pretty trims, bargeboards and window shutters. Each roulotte benefits from a steerable front axle and towing bar. (01684 541875;

130 JUNE 2015


SUSTAINABLE MATERIALS What better way to make a garden room that blends with its surroundings than from the earth itself? This strawbale H400xDia.500cm summerhouse (right), by Straw Works, is built from straw and natural plasters, and has a very low carbon footprint. Straw is a wonderful insulator, making for quiet buildings that stay warm in winter and cool in summer. Straw Works offers a fully integrated service covering everything from initial site survey to construction, and there’s even the option to build it yourself. Prices range from £12,000 (with partial self-build) to £25,000 (complete service). (07840 603204;

Buyer’s Guide


CREATIVE CONVERSION This ingenious, self-supporting steel structure (left) started life as a commercial shipping container before being converted into a home office by Green Roof Shelters. Eco-friendly in more ways than one, the offices come with deep sedum roofs planted with wildflowers, and have attached nesting places to help make your garden a haven for wildlife. From £28,680 for a similar H290xW650xD290cm glazed container, including wiring. Externally insulated, Scottish larch-clad glazed containers start at £38,220. (07967 733720;

6 7

BESPOKE FOR LESS For a unique garden room that doesn’t cost the earth, customise an off-the-peg summerhouse. The owners of this Prima Louisa octagonal design (above), H300xDia.300cm, from Garden Affairs, hired a thatcher to create a roof that complemented their cottage. Made from pine with double-glazed windows, the building comes in a raw finish ready for painting, with a choice of a bitumen felt or cedar shingle roof, from £3,295. (01225 774566;

MODERN TWIST Clad in hardwearing Siberian larch, and with a distinctive angular shape, Wild Wood Designs’ camping pod (right) is a sculptural yet harmonious addition to your outdoor space. Each unit is insulated, comfortably sleeps up to four people, and comes with French doors and a front deck, making it the perfect solution for guest accommodation. The buildings also come with a set of removable caravan wheels and tow hitch for camping getaways. A standard H310xW600xD350cm pod costs £9,360, with wiring and built-in furniture available at an additional cost. (01373 812853; JUNE 2015 131


TREETOP HIDEAWAY Like living the high life? This bespoke, luxury treehouse (left) by Blue Forest features a spacious deck, wired interior complete with wall-mounted TV, zip wire, rope bridge and sunken trampoline, making it the ultimate chill-out space. The exterior combines warm cedar cladding with green roof tiles to blend with the tree. As the treehouses can be built with supporting stilts, having a sturdy tree is not essential. From £72,000 for a similar H900xW500xD400cm design. (01892 750090;

9 10

GYPSY TRAVELLER Built on an easy-to-tow chassis, and with room to sleep four, this handmade bowtop caravan (below), from Greg’s Gypsy Bowtop Caravans, is ideal as a portable holiday home, or a permanent garden guest lodge. The spacious wagon features a seasoned pine frame, Indian organic cotton lining and fully waterproofed and insulated outer covering. From £11,500 for H200xW460xD200cm, excluding built-in furniture, they can also be handpainted. (07505 485185;

VICTORIAN REVIVAL This charming hut (below) was custommade by The Classic Shed Company to evoke the Victorian bathing machines that once lined Britain’s beaches, which were wheeled into the water to give discreet access. A similar bespoke insulated, painted timber hut, measuring H275xW245x D200cm, with a corrugated tin roof, costs around £5,800 plus delivery. (01328 823413;


132 JUNE 2015


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Salvage News

Reclaim & reuse Unearth some hidden treasures and be inspired by our salvage haul



Diary date Yard of the month Don’t be surprised to find anything and everything at Willesden Salvage yard. This north London repository is full of characterful objects, with a good selection of fireplaces, doors and decorative architectural features, plus quirky, curious and practical everyday household wares, luggage and storage solutions. Miscellaneous items are available to hire, and sympathetic cleaning and restoration services are also offered. (020 8459 2947;

What The 14th Salvo Fair Where At the new venue of Fawley Hill, near Henley-on-Thames Find Around 80 dealers from the UK, Europe and beyond, selling salvage for home and garden Details Trade day, Friday 26 June, 11am–4pm, admission: £15. Saturday/ Sunday, 11am–5pm, admission: £9 – see page three for a 2for1 ticket offer for PL readers. (01225 422300;

3 2

Reclaimed lanterns and bulkheads are ideal for garden use. Lower light levels save energy and are more wildlifefriendly, while lanterns lit with tea lights are mobile, and – usually – safe to hang from trees. Many industrial lights work in a porch but aren’t intended for exterior use. For mains connections, make sure your outside electrics are BS compliant. 1. DOUBLE ACT This magnificent antique copper lantern, one of a pair, for use outdoors, is a real find as they rarely survive the elements. H84xW39cm, £4,750, Fritz Fryer (01989 567416; 2. GATE KEEPER A very rare reclaimed vintage overgate design, this lantern features its original glass light cover. H104xW176.5cm, £995, UK Architectural Antiques (01543 222923; 3. SHIP AHOY This 1970s industrial wall-mount bulkhead light made from cast aluminium was recovered from a factory in Poland, H30xW20x D20cm, £150, Sroka (020 8747 8760;



SPOTTED! This French 19th-century Louis XVI Breche de Medici marble chimneypiece, from Connaught Place, London, has lovely serpentine lines. H105.5xW145xD43cm, £8,350, Lassco Brunswick House (020 7394 2100;

Leaded lights often need repair. ‘If there are just one or two cracked pieces, we generally suggest leaving them,’ says Colin Andrews, of South London Stained Glass. Individual glass pieces can be repaired or replaced while leaving the panel in situ. Eventually, however, the putty that holds the glass in the lead deteriorates and falls out. Radical treatment is then required. ‘Salvaged panels often need to be taken apart and rebuilt with new lead to render them suitable for re-use,’ says Colin. Rebuilt leaded panels are often installed into doors behind safety glass; while this detracts from the appearance, the protective panel enhances security and durability. So budget for repair – or a total rebuild – before you buy. ( JUNE 2015 137

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Repair or Replace?

Railings & gates Douglas Kent Technical and research director at the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (


rought-iron railings and gates have been in use since the 16th century. Their popularity increased after the Great Fire of London as they offered a non-combustible alternative to timber palisades. Wrought ironwork is malleable and, traditionally, was forged by local blacksmiths. Early railings tended to be for security and of simple design, but later styles became highly decorative. From the early-18th century, railings could be of wrought and/or cast iron. Cast iron is produced in foundries by pouring molten iron into moulds and, unlike wrought iron, is brittle and shatters if hammered. Cast-iron and wrought-iron railings are synonymous with Georgian towns and neighbourhoods, such as London’s Spitalfields. After the invention of the cupola furnace in the 1790s, which enabled casting to take place anywhere in the country, cast iron superseded wrought iron in popularity. Castings were increasingly used to imitate wrought-iron forms. The 20th century saw the widespread introduction of mild steel alongside the development of fusion welding. Mild steel is the modern equivalent of wrought iron, which is now only available in recycled form. Retaining traditional metal railings and gates can greatly enhance the appearance and value of an old building. Properly maintained, they can last for centuries. When protective coatings are neglected, however, corrosion may occur. Early signs of

‘Retaining traditional metal railings and gates can greatly enhance the appearance as well as the value of an old building’ rusting include surface pitting, blistering paint, orange staining and oily surface residues. As rusting continues, expansion (‘rust jacking’) may split masonry at fixing points.

Photograph ISTOCK


Normally, repair is viable and, where possible, is best carried out without dismantling railings or gates. Good practice entails using like-for-like materials and techniques, such as repairing cast iron with cast iron, but mild steel is often used to repair wrought iron due to the difficulty of obtaining the latter. It is less durable, however, even when galvanised or zinc-sprayed. Stainlesssteel fixings are increasingly used with cast iron.

ABOVE Over time, wrought-iron railings became more decorative and flamboyant in elegant

neighbourhoods. Scrolls were perennially popular with the blacksmith due to their versatility in design

Regular maintenance will prevent corrosion. Standard modern paints with mid-sheen finishes are a practical alternative to traditional lead-based coatings, but high-performance modern options require extensive surface preparation, which may be undesirable where older, underlying decorative schemes survive. Railings from the 17th and 18th centuries are now commonly painted black, but blue, green and grey are more authentic colours.


Occasionally, where there is vehicle damage, for example, replacement may be the only option. New cast-iron and mild-steel equivalents can be readily obtained and, if carefully forged, mild steel is hard to distinguish from wrought iron. For a periodstyle finish, it is best to use traditional methods of assembly rather than arc welding, which is the method that’s commonly used today.

USEFUL CONTACTS New railings Dorothea Restorations (0845 478 0773;; Topp & Co (01347 833173; Repairs Hall Conservation (020 8855 8567; JUNE 2015 139

Restoring exterior



or owners – or, more appropriately, custodians – of old timber-frame homes, first thoughts regarding their maintenance and renovation usually turn to the characterful, exposed ceiling joists. But one rather large area that can sometimes be overlooked is the external face of the timber. Timber-frame homes may be constructed from oak, elm or another species. If they have not been clad with brick, or rendered entirely in lime, the exposed timber will have been at the mercy of the elements over many years; some may have also been covered with inappropriate modern materials, such as acrylic paint, resulting in the need for restoration or repair.

Potential issues

Rot, infestation and structural defects are the most common causes of issues, and often are interlinked. Rot can render external timbers unfit for purpose, as can wood-boring insects, which thrive in damp wood. Rot may, however, only impact the exterior weathering face, with the timber behind remaining in good condition. Before treating the effects and undertaking cosmetic repairs to the wood, it is, therefore, essential, to identify the cause of the problem. Moisture can become trapped within timber in different ways. For example, ‘shakes’ on the exterior beams – splits that can develop along the grain as the timber dries out – do not typically compromise the structural integrity of the frame; however, they may lead to rainwater ingress, which can, over time, result in rot and decay. ‘Another common problem can occur where a timber was originally installed with the grain running at an angle. Over 140 JUNE 2015

time, rain can expose the grain, causing ridges to form, and water can become trapped within the undulating surface,’ says Edward Parry, a builder specialising in restoration work ( Soil levels or interior floors can also build up over the sole plate – the timber at the base of the frame – causing this key piece of structural timber to become saturated and rotten. The use of modern, synthetic materials in repair work has become another cause of decay over the last half-century. Wood is a breathable material that allows

Rot, infestation and structural defects are the most common causes of issues, and often are interlinked moisture and humidity to pass freely through it. By contrast, materials such as cement render and synthetic paints are largely or completely impermeable. ‘The biggest problem facing timberframe homes is when they get “clagged up” with synthetic materials that don’t allow the timber to breathe; this begins a chain reaction,’ says Pete Ward of period buildings specialist Heritage House (

Remedial work

If you have identified potential issues, or these have been highlighted in your building survey, then engaging a skilled carpenter, master craftsperson or period building specialist with expertise in this area is a priority. Inappropriate modern

repairs, such as the use of impermeable water repellents or cement render, will only serve to exacerbate existing problems and hasten rot. ‘The first thing we do on site is work to understand and analyse how the building was put together; timber frames can be like jigsaw puzzles,’ says Barry Mulford of B Mulford Historic Carpentry, which specialises in restoring the integrity of old timber frames. Every home is different; timber-frame design evolved over the centuries, and many buildings have been added to and extended over the years, sometimes with key structural timbers cut without adequate support given to the frame. ‘Once we’ve established how the weight is distributed and the repairs required, we’ll then begin to work out a methodical schedule of repairs,’ adds Barry. A key part of this initial process is identifying whether repairs are required to return the frame to a structurally sound condition. ‘It’s only when the frame is structurally sound that we can begin tackling major jobs, such as replacing a sole plate.’ The sole plate – also known as the cill plate – typically rests on a plinth wall. The vertical timbers – the posts and studs – are tenoned into it, so it plays a vital role in supporting the frame and is usually the first element to require repair. ‘Sometimes a tradesperson will have previously covered the sole plate in cement, in an attempt to prevent decay, but within five to 10 years this impermeable layer will cause even more destruction,’ explains Barry. In some instances, only sections may need cutting out; in others, an entire sole plate could need replacing. This task typically involves propping up the frame and removing a couple of courses of


Exposure to the elements can take its toll on the façade of an old timber-frame property. Claire Lloyd explains how to approach maintenance and repair


CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT After years of exposure to the elements, external timbers usually need attention; there is no evidence that timbers were originally painted black; B Mulford Historic Carpentry has replaced a rotten sole plate and parts of the post with new timber on this renovation project (bmulfordhistoric; if a home is listed, restoration work needs the approval of the local conservation officer; ‘shakes’ can develop on timbers over time, which add to a home’s character JUNE 2015 141


FAR LEFT If you have identified potential issues, engage the services of a skilled carpenter, master craftsperson, or period building specialist with expertise in repairing timber-frame properties LEFT, TOP AND BOTTOM In this repair project on a 17th-century property, which was once a blacksmith’s workshop, Tudor Oak Projects repaired the post and rails where needed, and reinstated a new sole plate with green oak (01543 241242;

Black and white homes

The ‘black and white’ timber frame houses that we’ve come to recognise as part of the vernacular of counties such as Herefordshire, Worcestershire and 142 JUNE 2015

‘With old timber-frame homes, it’s important to have one-year, five-year and 25-year schedules of works’

washing – also known as sandblasting – is the alternative. ‘Sandblasting has a reputation for being too abrasive; however, a specialist can turn the pressure right down to simply lift off the paint without impacting on the woodgrain. It can be so gentle that even limewash may be lifted off simply by using compressed air,’ says Pete.

Shropshire, are not as historic as we may believe. ‘There’s no evidence that black was ever used as a historic paint; in fact, timber frames were not even originally painted,’ explains Pete Ward of Heritage House. It was, therefore, later occupants of these buildings who coated the timbers in black. The use of black plastic-based paints is detrimental to timber. Some frames, often of agricultural buildings, were covered in bitumen, once believed to be a good means of waterproofing, but this impermeable layer can instead trap moisture, leading to rot. Aside from allowing the coatings to weather off, there are a couple of methods of restoration. The first is to apply chemicals to strip away the paint, although this is not the preferred option. Mechanical removal by air-

‘The most common problems we encounter are the result of a lack of maintenance,’ says Barry Mulford. ‘With old timber frame homes, it’s important to have one-year, fiveyear and 25-year schedules of works. ‘The best thing you can do is render over the entire exterior with lime mortar; this prevents leaks and degenerative weathering to the timber,’ he adds, although admits that it is rare to find a homeowner with which this notion sits easily. It can, however, be a particularly good idea for those elevations exposed to prevailing winds, where driving rain can be a cause for concern. The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) offers a technical helpline if you are in doubt as to how to proceed (020 7456 0916;

Ongoing maintenance


the brick plinth to allow the insertion of a new plate, usually made from airdried timber, on a bed of lime mortar. The exterior of the frame can also require attention. ‘Rotten elements of the weathering face – the first 20mm – can be replaced quite easily,’ says Barry. ‘I often consider this a sacrificial change; it protects the wood behind, and if it needs to be replaced again in 100 years, at least this new face has saved all the characterful elements and hard heartwood behind.’ Rotten sections can be removed and sensitively repaired with new air-dried timber of the same species, spliced in by means of a scarf joint. New timber can also be spliced in to fill large shakes, or these can be filled with lime mortar and a limewash applied as a finish. Any previous repairs made with cement mortar should be removed. Heritage House offers a caulking repair kit, consisting of oakum – a breathable hemp fibre, soaked in Stockholm tar – as another option.


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ABOVE Decorate your home with country-inspired checked patterns, page 33

020 8504 8648 Lassco 020 7394 8061 Laura Ashley 0333 200 8009 Laughing Hedgehog Lewes Antiques Market 020 8504 8648 01273 480328 Deckchair 01825 723441 DärStripes Lighting01244 336387 deckchairstripes. H&M Johnson Designs Laura020 Ashley 0333 200 8009 Glenys Liberty 7734 1234 comDebenhams 0344 561 6161 0344 736 9000 Designers Guild 020 7893 Lidia de Pedro 07512 Lewes Antiques Market 7400 Habitat 0344 499 1111 365553 01273 480328 Deckchair Stripes 01244 336387 H&M Dibor 0800 408 0660 dibor. Little Greene 0845 880 0344 736 9000 Harlequin 0845 123 6805 5855 Liberty 020 7734 1234 Designers Guild7676 020 7893 7400 Habitat 0344 499 1111 Dulux 0333 222 dulux. Loaf 0845 468 0698 loaf. com   Dibor 0800 408 0660 Ian Lidia de Pedro 07512 365553 Harlequin 6805 Mankin0845 020123 7722 London Original Print Fair Earthborn 01928 734171 0997 Dulux 0333 222 7676 7439 2000 Ikea Little Greene 0845 880 5855 Ebay In My Ian Room 01273 Mankin 020 675506 7722 0997 Earthborn 01928 734171 Lovers of Blue & White Emporium Antiques Centre Loaf853800 0845 468 0698 01763 01273 486866 India Jane 020 8961 8844 London Original Print Fair Ikea Ebay 0845 262 2212 Där Lighting Colourman Paints 01404 812523 Debenhams 0344 561 6161




Emporium Antiques Centre 01273 486866 Fabrics & Papers 01273 495500 FarrowFabrics & Ball&01202 Papers876141  01273 495500 Fired Earth 0845 366&0400 firedearth. Burleigh 01773 740740 Farrow Ball 01202 876141 com California Shutters  Fortnum & Mason 0808 159 0626 Earth 020Fired 7734 8040 0845 366 0400 California Shutters Cath Kidston 0845 026 0808 159 0626 Mason TheFortnum French&Bedroom 2440 020 7734 8040 Company 01444 415430 Catriona Mclean Cath Kidston 0845 026 2440 frenchbedroomcompany. 0033 6 32 53 54 33 The French Bedroom The French House Catriona Mclean Company 01444 415430 Chelsea Textiles 020 7584 020 7371 7573 0033 6 32 53 54 33 5544 uk The French House Garden Trading Clarke & Clarke 01706 Chelsea Textiles 020 7584 5544 020 7371 7573 0845 608 4448 242010 Coastal Home 01625




Gavin Douglas Fine Garden Trading Antiques 01825 723441 0845 608 4448 Glenys Johnson Designs Gavin Douglas Fine Antiques




In My Room 01273 675506 Jane Churchill 020 7244 India Jane 020 8961 8844 7427 Jennifer’s Cutlery 0115 925


6418 Jane Churchill 020 7244 7427 John Lewis 0345 604 9049 Jennifer’s Cutlery 0115 925 6418 John Lewis of Hungerford 0700 278 4726 john-lewis. John Lewis 0345 604 9049

020 7439 2000 0344of257 made. Lovers Blue1888 & White com01763 853800 Marks & Spencer


0333 014 8000 Mercury 0370 789 5107 0344 257 1888 Marks 07972 & Spencer Miafleur 102327 0333 014 8000 Morale Garden Furniture 01418 832285 John of Hungerford Mercury 0370 789 5107 KidsLewis Fabrics 01269 moralegardenfurniture. 0700 278 4726 825796 kidsfabrics. Miafleur 07972 102327 Multiyork 0845 303 7134 Kids Fabrics 01269 825796 La Maison Bleue Morale Garden Furniture 01543 481414 01418 832285 La Maison Bleue Lassco 01543 020 7394 8061 Multiyork 0845 303 7134 481414 Laughing Hedgehog



K LK L JUNE 2015 145


Newark Antiques Market

Newark Antiques Market Not on the High Street Not on the High Street 0845 259 1359 0845 259 1359 Nouveau Deco Arts Nouveau Deco Arts 07802 872363 07802 872363

Retrouvius 8960 6060 Rowen & Wren020 01932 847538 Rowen & Wren Rubelli 0039 41 2501932 84 411847538


Rubelli 0039 41 25 84 411

Sanderson rubelli.com0844 543 9500 Scarlet Sanderson & Violet 0844 543 9500 020 8969 9645 Occa-Home 0330 363363 0330 Scarlet & Violet Occa-Home 0330 Scumble Goosie 0330 020 8969 9645 01453 731305 OkaOka 0844 815 7380 okadirect. 0844 815 7380 com Scumble The Old Haberdashery Shimu 0800 Goosie 088 6800 The Old Haberdashery 01453 731305 07891 954971 07891 954971 Skinflint Design 01326 565227 Shimu 0800 088 6800 Osborne & Little 020 8812 3000 Osborne & Little 020 8812 Steven Bean Associates  3000  01653 691367 sba-design. OutOut & Out Original Skinflint Design 01326 565227 & Out Original 0344 417 417 14191419 0344 Sunbury Antiques Fair Steven Bean Associates OutOut There Interiors 01653 691367 There Interiors Sweetpea & Willow 020020 8099 7443 Sunbury Antiques Fair 8099 7443 0345 257 2627



Paint Library Paint 0845 880Library 5844 0845 880 5844 Pimpernel & Partners 020Pimpernel 7731 2448& Partners 020 7731 2448 020 8886 3000 Pussy Boutique PujiHome 020 8886 3000 01273 604861 Pussy Home Boutique 01273 604861 Redloh House Fabrics


020 7371 7787 Redloh House Fabrics 020020 73718960 7787 6060 Retrouvius 146 JUNE 2015



Sweetpea & Willow

Tara 0345McPherson 257 2627 Tesco Direct 0330 123 4050 Tara McPherson Three Angels Interiors 01273 958975 Tesco Direct 0330 123 4050 Topps Tiles 0800 783 6262 Three Angels Interiors 958975 Tryst01273 d’Amour 01273 251827


Topps Tiles 0800 783 6262 UK Bathroom Warehouse 020 8090 3449 Tryst d’Amour 01273 251827



UK Bathroom Warehouse Ulster Weavers 020 8090 3449  Urban Apothecary 0844 244 Weavers 8818 Ulster urbanapothecarylondon. com


Urban Apothecary 0844 244 8818

Vaughan Designs  Vibrant Home Vaughan Designs  Vintage Flower Paintings Vibrant Home 07768 592297 Flower635020 Paintings VolgaVintage Linen 01728 07768 592297 VV Rouleaux 020 7224 5179 Volga Linen 01728 635020

V Wall-Library VV Rouleaux 020 7224 5179 01858 540469

W Wedgwood 01782 204141 Wall-Library 01858 540469 Welbeck Tiles 01736 762000 Wedgwood01993 01782 776682 204141 Wesley-Barrell Wilverly 01843 603462 Welbeck Tiles 01736 762000 Within Home 020 7087 Wesley-Barrell 019932900 776682 Withycombe Fair 01706 Wilverly 01843 603462 242010 Blanket Online Within Home 020 7087 2900 01904 630908


Withycombe Fair 01706 242010 Wool Blanket Online 01904 630908

CLOCKWISE FROM FAR LEFT Indulgent buys for your bedroom, page 119; shopping treats inspired by strawberries and cream, page 15; get the look of our stylish readers’ homes, page 71; vintage-inspired finds for the garden, page 82 TERMS & CONDITIONS Prize competitions are open to UK residents aged 18 and over, except employees of Centaur Home Interest Media (Centaur), the prize supplier and their immediate families, and anyone else connected with the creation and administration of the promotion. Winners will be notified via post or email after the draw date. By entering the competition, the winner(s) consent(s) to any publicity generated as a result of the competition, and for this to be used on the Period Living website or within the magazine at any time. Text entries cost £1 plus network extras and all entrants must have the bill payer's permission. Any text received after 4pm on the stated closing date of the competition may be charged but won't be entered in the draw. The editor's decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. Only one entry per person. No purchase necessary. Prizes are non-transferable, non-negotiable and no cash alternatives will be offered. Centaur and the prize supplier reserve the right to substitute the prize for another prize of equal value. Centaur reserves the right to withdraw any competition prize at any time without notice. Centaur is not responsible for incorrect prize details supplied by prize suppliers. By entering the competition, the entrant agrees to the terms of the privacy policy. In addition, Centaur may pass your personal information to the prize suppliers and their data processors if you are opted in to this service. Centaur will not accept responsibility for loss through technical fault, incomplete, illegible or other damaged entries. Proof of postage/entry will not be accepted as proof of receipt. Postal entries will not be accepted for online only competitions. The competition draw is held by Period Living, 2 Sugar Brook Court, Aston Road, Bromsgrove, Worcestershire B60 3EX.

Marketplace Looking for the perfect period-style furnishings, fixtures and finishes for your decorating or renovation project? You’ll find everything you need right here. To book advertising space call Emma Farrington on 020 7970 4421 or email

VICTORIAN LIGHTING COMPANY Located in the heart of the Pennines, Yorkshire. Handcrafted British made products. Quality cast Iron lamp posts, copper outdoor lighting, period doorbells. Various fixtures and finishes.

Individually handcrafted in the UK

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❋ HEATING p154









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Antique Centres, fairs & Auctions All the events in the antiques world worth knowing about. To include a listing, call Emma Farrington on 020 7970 4421 or email


Seek the unique by visiting one of B2B Events Fairs in Kent, Worcestershire, Birmingham, Northants or Edinburgh. The following are this month. Antiques & Vintage Bazaar at the Custard Factory Birmingham - 6 June Open 10am-4pm. Admission £1. Free parking in Heath Mill Lane Car Park. Great vintage, great retro, great antiques & collectables.

5 Lincolnshire Antiques and Home Show

12 Decorative Home & Salvage Show

6 NEW ‘Runway Monday at Newark’ Antiques & Collectors Fair 7 Newark International Antiques & Collectors Fair

9 Midland Furniture Auctions 1 Antiques & Vintage Bazaar 8 Fellows Auctioneers

4 TW Gaze Diss Auction Rooms

3 Stamford Meadows

2 Shepton Mallet Antiques, Vintage & Collectors Fair

11 Newbury One Day Monday Antiques & Collectors Fair

1 Detling Antiques & Collectors Fair 10 Ardingly International Antiques & Collectors Fair

3 Stamford Meadows (Lincolnshire) 3 day

Antiques, Collectors & Vintage Big Weekend Off Bath Row,Off A1, Stamford, Lincolnshire PE9 2DR

Detling Antiques & Collectors Fair - 20 & 21 June Kent Showground, Maidstone ME14 3JF. Sat Early Entry 8.30am-10am, £6: Public 10am-4.30pm, £5. Sunday 10am-3.30pm, £4. Up to 300 exhibitors inside & out. or 01636 676531 for further information

2 Shepton Mallet Antiques, Vintage & Collectors Fair Royal Bath & West Showground, Shepton Mallet, Somerset, SAT NAV BA4 6QN

A quality West Country antiques fair where quality goods can be bought in high quantity. Hundreds of stalls across four halls and a 30 booth shopping arcade. Friday 8- Sunday 10th May Friday 3 - Sunday 5 July 01636 702326

4 TW Gaze Diss Auction Rooms

2,000 lots auctioned every Friday plus Saturday sales

This fantastic fair gives a full 3 days of Antiques, Collectables, Furniture, Vintage, Militaria, Maps, Shabby chic & much more. A huge range of inside marquee stalls and an outside brocante fair. Refreshments available, some FREE parking on Meadows (weather permitting) and ample local parking close by.

Viewing Thursdays 2 – 8pm and on morning of sale from 8.30am. Sales start 10.30am

23-25 May 2015. Open 9.30am - 4.00pm each day. £4.00 Adults/£3.00 Concessions/Acc Child under 16 Free Early Bird Entry on Day 1 only 8.30am £5.00.

Valuing around East Anglia; bringing services to your door.

148 JUNE 2015

5 Lincolnshire Antiques and Home Show

Lincolnshire Showground, Grange-de-Lings, Lincoln, LN2 2NA With thousands of international stalls selling the most beautiful antiques, jewellery, furniture, reclamation items, French linens, vintage clothing and accessories. The world famous Lincolnshire Antiques and Home Show is the largest in Europe and attracts thousands of buyers and sellers from all over the world. Monday 6 April & Tuesday 7 April Monday 1 June & Tuesday 2 June 01298 27493

7 Newark International Antiques & Collectors Fair Newark & Nottinghamshire Showground, Newark, Nottinghamshire NG24 2NY

Europe’s largest antiques fair needs to be experienced to be believed. Thousands of stalls cover an 84 acre site, providing a product list that is simply unrivalled. Thursday 4 & Friday 5 June Thursday 20 & Friday 21 August 01636 702326

9 Midland Furniture Auctions Midland Furniture Auctions holds one of the UK’s biggest weekly furniture auctions. Every Wednesday their salerooms are packed with the latest ranges and types of furniture. Bidders can expect choice at great prices. Located off the M1 (J28) near Alfreton, Derbyshire. 10 Grange Close, Clover Nook Industrial Park, Alfreton, Derbyshire, DE55 4QT.

Call 01773 832 555

6 NEW Runway Monday at Newark Antiques & Collectors Fair Drove Lane, Newark, Nottinghamshire NG24 2NY

IACF’s Swinderby One Day Monday event has been renamed and relocated to the runway adjacent to the Newark Air Museum and the Newark & Nottinghamshire Showground. It remains the same short, sharp burst of antique shopping between the major international fairs at Newark. Monday 25 May & Monday 13 July 01636 702326

8 Fellows Auctioneers Holding over 100 auctions a year from Jewellery to Antiques, Fellows Auctioneers is one of the oldest and most respected auction houses in the country. See the website for free valuations and to find out more about its fortnightly auction. Opening hours: Monday to Thursday 9am-5pm, Friday 9am-4pm, Saturday 11am-4pm. Visit or call 0203 733 6118 for more information.

10 Ardingly International Antiques & Collectors Fair South of England Showground, Nr Haywards Heath, West Sussex, SAT NAV RH17 6TL

A superb fair with a continental feel. Over a thousand stalls make this the largest fair in the south of England. Everything from gems to gardenalia. Tuesday 23 & Wednesday 24 June Tuesday 21 & Wednesday 22 July 01636 702326

11 Newbury One Day Monday Antiques & Collectors Fair Newbury Racecourse, Newbury, Berkshire, SAT NAV RG14 7NZ The perfect taster event for anyone new to antiques fairs or anyone wanting a short, sharp burst of vintage shopping between the larger fairs. Monday 29 June & Monday 24 August 01636 702326

12 Decorative Home & Salvage Show Ripley Castle, Harrogate, HG3 3AY

Built around the theme of true reclamation and recycling, the Decorative Home and Salvage Show brings together a fine selection of specially selected exhibitors for a showcase of the finest architectural salvage, reclaimed materials, garden statuary, modern and decorative antiques and furnishings. So, if you’re salvage savvy, passionate about the past, restoring a Victorian home to its former glory, or just looking for that exquisite piece to make a statement, then the Decorative Home and Salvage Show is the one for you.

May 15 & 17: Friday Trade Preview 12 noon - 5pm. Free of Charge for all registered attendees. £10 p/p for all non-registered attendees. Saturday & Sunday 10am – 5pm £5 p/p. Under 15s free. 01298 27493 JUNE 2015 149


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OME-DecJan-UK-class:WTS TEH AUG-SEPT 04 v5



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Huge selection of beautiful Antique Bedsteads • Range of mattresses and linen The Old Holme School, Crabtree Lane, Headley, Hampshire GU35 8QH Tel 01428 717000 Free brochure on request

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Bromleighs Anything less is a compromise Sockets & Switches Lighting Hardware

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Beautiful and practical – made-to-measure furniture in around two weeks! Imagine the perfect furniture for your home, designed just for your space and needs. We make Jali products to your exact sizes and deliver to your door in around two weeks. From radiator cabinets and shutters to dressers and wardrobes, everything can be customised to your wishes on our website. Jali: the quality and finish of bespoke joinery, without the high price-tag! Contact us to find out more...

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From weavers’ co-op, Kerala.

Beautifully restored & renovated Aga Cookers

Tough, good-looking floormats, 100% coir TAPS

Hays of

01548 830069

Art Deco & Traditional Taps, Showers & accessories. Made to order Established 1994

North Island Plumbing & Radiators

Tel. 01779 481996 KITCHENS

‘Sheila Maid’®

Order the online from or by telephone:

+44 (0)1307 468589

Est. 1986


4 Rail Option

57” £59

6ft £62

7ft £65

(clear lacquer)

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57” £82

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6ft £85

Nutscene (1922) Ltd, Forfar, Angus DD8 2RG

7ft £88

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AltrinchamCheshire WA14 3RU

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Why not contact us by phone or email for your lovely catalogue...


Servicing PI01_MAY15




T: 01935 434 700 E:

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My vintage world

Sarah Kingston

The co-founder of Goose Home & Garden shares her inspirations and prized pieces

ABOVE, FROM TOP Sarah at home; she and husband Paul would love to live in an original tin tabernacle such as this one at the Avoncroft Museum of Historic Buildings (; find vintage galvanised dolly tubs, used here as garden planters, at Goose Home & Garden, £95 each

(01273 452020; 162 JUNE 2015

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP The traditional rural buildings of the Weald & Downland Open Air Museum (wealddown.; Sarah’s recent buy, a vintage simplex step ladder, has the most ornate hinges; her prized sewing box; find pieces such as this vintage sideboard, £495, at Goose Home & Garden



rom an early age, I’ve been fascinated with antique and vintage objects. As a child I remember visiting car-boot sales with my mother, where I’d spend my pocket money on pretty teacups, wooden toys and games – anything that caught my eye! I’m the same today – I don’t have a favourite style or era in design history; I’m simply drawn to anything old and well made. If it’s a bit worn with imperfections, then all the better, as these are the marks that reveal an object’s fascinating history of being used and loved. The craftsmanship invested in old things also appeals to me – even the humblest of items were made with so much time, thought and skill, such as the simplex step ladder I recently bought, which features the most detailed handcrafted hinges. It is these understated, rustic items that my husband Paul and I love to hunt down for our online shop, but also to surround ourselves with at home. Collections on display include wooden plumbers’ turnpins, old sock dryers and handpainted traders’ signs to name but a few, but we also like to give old things new uses; for example, old dolly tubs make for perfect garden planters as well as great laundry baskets. When it comes to buying pieces for our home, we’re rarely looking for specific items, but instead tend to stumble across things when out and about. Our favourite haunts are Sunbury and Ardingly antiques fairs, and we also visit several fairs in France over the summer. Locally, Nutley Antiques in East Sussex ( is always full of wonderful things, and online I find The Hoarde ( a great source for vintage and antique pieces. My most cherished item is an inlaid sewing box left to me by my only aunt, who was a great maker-crafter. It was made by her grandfather, who was a skilled craftsman himself, and is full of old lace, motherof-pearl buttons, and dainty sewing tools made from bone and ivory. On a larger scale, Paul and I dream of buying a Victorian tin tabernacle to convert into our dream home. We are fortunate to have some fine survivals nearby to admire, including the chapel re-erected at the Weald & Downland Open Air Museum – a great day out if you love old buildings. Paul is a builder by trade, and has promised that if we can’t find an old one, he’ll build a replica for us as a workshop!








Luxury Crafted Wardrobes - Dressing Rooms - Walk-in Wardrobes London: 0203 355 8575

Knutsford: 01565 817 327