Finding beauty everywhere… Nature, different cultures, architecture, design, art, there’s beauty to be found, well, everywhere, and I’ll be looking at some of the things that I find that I’d like to share with you in future posts. But to start us off, I’m going to share what I always come back to, what has always been the most important thing to me: home; such a small word with such a big meaning. To me, it should be not just practical and functional, but personal too, and that’s what should make it beautiful; I firmly believe that our homes should tell the stories of our lives. I love visiting other people’s homes and finding out about their passions in life, what collections they treasure, what they love but perhaps have forgotten about until I arrive and uncover some wonderful gem; this is what excites me and makes me want to keep doing what I do. I’ve been inspired by so many people I’ve met over the years, and I endeavour to make my own home as personal to me as those I visit are to their owners.
Growing up in Yorkshire, the youngest of four children to a single mum, with not much money, or space, Mum made home the best she could, with crazy colour schemes, clashing patterns, and upcycled furniture before it was even a ‘thing’. She made home feel warm, safe, and creative. As I grew up I wanted to have that for myself, but I had to move around a fair bit before I found my Mr Jones, and somewhere to create our home together.
In December 2012, a week before Lillie-Mae’s 1st birthday we moved here, our detached Victorian suburban villa. Our home is not huge, it’s just big enough for the three of us; we extended the kitchen, but not massively, just enough to make room for the peninsula island for cooking and crafting; and we renovated the bathroom to give us the industrial/cowboy style we were after. We’ve also redecorated every other room in the house, all three of them: two bedrooms, and an open plan sitting room/office. Oh, and the hallway, which, call me crazy, I love as much as a room.
When we moved in, each room had thick cream carpet, laced with dust and pet hairs from the previous owners’ enormous dog; we’ve ripped it all up to expose the floorboards, helping air circulate better and keeping allergies at bay, as well as bringing out the original character of the house. We’ve covered over the silver picture rails with a crisp white; and the flat white, lilac and gold painted walls have been unified with a rich off-white and a selection of green shades for accent walls. I desperately wanted a reclaimed brick wall in the kitchen, and my wish was granted by our wonderful builder who crafted the extension; meanwhile, I tasked Mr Jones with the painstaking job of papering a wall in our bedroom with my grandad’s old sheet music (he played trumpet and drums – though, presumably, not at the same time – in a big band during the first half of the 20th century).
So there we have it, a good backdrop for furniture and mementoes picked up over the years: collections of musical instruments, chiefly guitars; plus, headphones and mic stands; skateboards and maps; graphic novels and graphic art; vinyl, books and magazines, Lillie-Mae’s Lego, nature jars and drawings; vintage bits and bobs I can’t resist buying from the dealers whose homes I style; and various skulls and skeletons, both real and fake.
We love music, we love creating, and we love our home.