I was catching up on the Sunday papers a few weeks ago when a headline by journalist India Knight suddenly jumped out at me. ‘We’re ahead of you, Ikea: we already know Britain has hit peak tat’ the article read.
India goes on to write about how we have reached a point in Britain where we are sick of enormous department stores and supermarkets selling everything from clothes to tellies and that ‘regardless of what I need to buy, I want little friendly shops that know me and my tastes’. I couldn’t agree more and have long felt that the appeal of the cheap and disposable which has gripped Britain in recent years is starting to wane and people are becoming more mindful of the objects they choose to surround themselves with and the way they want to shop.
In her article, India writes that ‘our homes are extensions of ourselves and as such are constantly evolving’ and this is exactly the way I feel! Many of our interior design clients have been with us since we first opened 20 years ago – we’ve seen them get married, start families and of course move house! As such I keep in mind the way their life and home is likely to evolve so that the finished design anticipates their future needs. I always ask if there are any pieces of furniture that they already own which they are particularly fond of as so often a tired old armchair or sofa can be completely transformed with fresh fabric. Time and time again the client is thrilled that they don’t have to start from scratch but can make these elements a part of their new scheme.
The perfect interior for me is always a balance of the old and the new – it’s these layers which take a space from simply being a beautiful room to a home. India’s article ends with the idea that we might now try ‘peak living well’ which really resonated with me – our homes and our possessions are there not to make us happy (which, sadly, they do not have the power to do on their own) but to support our lifestyles and free us up for the important thing in life – the living!