Manuela Hamilford pretty childrens bedroom with pink and flowery interiors and 2 single beds

House Guest Podcast

Interiors /

Interiors Editor Carole Annett gets tips from top design experts. This week's guest: Felix Conran

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Welcome to the new series of the House Guest podcast where C&TH Interiors Editor Carole Annett chats with experts from the world of interior design and decoration, the people behind the houses and hotels you see in glossy magazines like ours. This series will see experts guiding readers on a particular area of their own expertise, we hope you’ll pick up some useful tips. Enjoy!

Episode 13: Maker & Son – gold stars again for the Conran clan – how do they do it?

Felix Conran


Founded by father and son Alex Willcock and Felix Conran, Maker & Son make natural, life-lasting upholstered furniture including sofas, armchairs and beds. From its base in Balcombe, Sussex, this is the story of a family with creativity and craft in their DNA. Felix Conran chats to Carole Annett about how Maker & Son came to be, the ‘flump’, mobile shopping vans and exciting plans for the future. Tune in for more.

Previous ‘How To’ House Guest Episodes:

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Manuela Hamilford house guest podcast

Episode 12: How to Decorate Children’s Bedrooms with Manuela Hamilford

Born and raised in Vicenza, Italy and then moved to New York City to start her career in design, Manuela Hamilford first cut her teeth at Bergdorf Goodman, working within luxury Italian home furnishings. She gained a flair for interior design and after heading back to London in 2000 she launched her own interior design studio, Hamilford Design. Manuela has created many beautiful projects over the last twelve years, noting a change in how children’s bedrooms are designed – the kids are now in control requesting theatre-style dressing rooms and gaming chairs. Tune in for more.

Kit Kemp and Annie Selke house guest podcast

Episode 11: How to Think like Annie and Kit

The two creative dynamos, Annie Selke (chief vision officer and founder of Annie Selke the Massachusetts-based go-to for colourful rugs and bedding) and Kit Kemp, founder of Firmdale Hotels and Kit Kemp design studio who together have launched a new collection of lifestyle designs based on three favourite destinations, London, New York and Barbados.  Having never met, the two were introduced when Annie was asked who she would most like to collaborate with ‘I immediately said Kit Kemp as I am a big fan of her hotels although we’d never met. It happened over Zoom and ‘we spoke the same language,’ she laughs. The collection includes rugs, pillows and bedding in natural jute and wool and also PET (made from plastics), ‘I was a bit sniffy at first about recycled material but it’s fantastic,’ says Kit. Designs include Jellyroll, Lily Pad, Eternal Spring and Horseshoe. Tune in for more.

The Kit Kemp Collection for Annie Selke, a collaboration and friendship available at and

guy oliver house guest podcast

Episode 10: How to design in the luxury hotel sector with Guy Oliver of architect and design firm Oliver Laws

My House Guest this week is Guy Oliver, managing director and principal designer at Oliver Laws. We natter about designing luxury hotels as two of Guy’s long-term projects are Dublin’s The Shelbourne and London’s Connaught hotels. Guy joined Oliver Laws after finishing his commission as a Royal Naval Officer and credits the training with being able to work with demanding clients including first boss, David Laws. ‘I was used to dealing with eccentric characters,’ he says, ‘they were no more challenging than the average Admiral, captain, or even my parents’. His work often involves historic or listed buildings and interiors – ‘Finding the subtle interplay between authenticity and taste is the very essence of what we do and are known for’. Tune in for more.

House Guest Charlotte Lawson Johnston

Episode 9: How Charlotte L-J discovered a more earth-loving, gentle and sustainable approach to making and dyeing natural fabrics

Today we are looking back at another of my favourite House Guest podcasts. Charlotte Lawson Johnston of Cloth Collective is on a mission to educate consumers on non-toxic fabrics and using sustainable fibres such as linen, silk and hemp. Trained at the New York School of Interior Design, Charlotte now lives between Oxford and Uruguay. She has two daughters and a cow called Leche, which her husband gave as a birthday gift. She is passionate about natural fabrics having been alarmed at the amount of water used and the chemical smell of textile manufacturing when creating her first collection. It kick-started a desire to create fabrics in a more natural, sustainable way. Tune in for more.

shot of Martyn Lawrence Bullard with house guest podcast banner

Episode 8: How Martyn Lawrence Bullard conquered the celebrity world to become their go-to decorator

Today we are looking back at one of my favourite House Guest podcasts – the dreamy Martyn Lawrence Bullard. One of the most talented and entertaining people i have met, I met up with Martyn in Paris in 2019 to chat about how he conquered the celebrity world to become their go-to interior designer. He relates delicious stories about Cher’s bathroom and working with the Kardashian clan. I’m also delighted to say this is one of the podcasts that you can tune into on British Airways inflight entertainment (click on the Audio section and you’ll find us on board). Enjoy.

house guest template with nina campbell

Episode 7: How To Decorate with Nina Campbell

Today’s House Guest is the guru of interiors – Nina Campbell. Nina was my very first podcast victim and has graciously agreed to chat again to celebrate 50 years in the business. Having started with John Fowler at Sibyl Colefax & John Fowler, ‘I considered myself lucky to be carrying his bags’, she says, Nina went on to work for Mark Birley on the interiors of Annabel’s members’ club. They teamed up to open a shop on the Pimlico Road, SW1. Nina explains: ‘Eventually Mark got bored, but I continued and moved to Walton Street, SW3. I was a bit tired of interior design at that point but, one day, Anne Heseltine walked into the shop and asked if I could decorate her and Michael’s new house on Chapel Street, SW1. It turned out to be a house in which I had lived as a child. I’ve always been guided by these sorts of things – interference from the Almighty, so to speak. Interior design is a bossy business and if you’re that way inclined and someone asks you to help, you say, ‘Yes.’

Tune in to hear about what Nina has been up to recently and her top tips on decorating a beautiful home.

Nina Campbell

house guest podcast food shot

Episode 6: How To Eat: Extraordinary Food and a Fabulous Setting at Heckfield Place with Skye Gyngell and David Rowley

My House Guests this week are Skye Gyngell and David Rowley, who between them oversee food and farm at Heckfield Place in Hampshire. “When a restaurant has a real relationship with a farm, it’s both of our work on the plate.’ explains Skye, who rose to fame via the food pages of Vogue and the Michelin-star Petersham Nurseries before launching Spring restaurant at Somerset House. The ethos of food at Heckfield starts with the soil and follows the principles of biodynamic farming. David explains how understanding the movements of the sun and moon and seeding at favourable times results in fruit and vegetables that taste as Mother Nature intended. Tune in for more and to hear about Heckfield’s monthly open days (starting this month) where you can visit the gardens and buy pickles, jams, cordial, flowers and home made bread – a wonderful day out and a taste of Heckfield (visit for details).
Sabina Savage House Guest artist and scarf designer

Episode 5: How to Expand a Luxury Business During Difficult Times with Artist and Scarf Designer Sabina Savage

‘I always knew I wanted to be a fashion designer’, explains Sabina. After training at Paris’s oldest couture school she applied for a work placement at McQueen and there was able to hone her craft. ‘Alexander McQueen was the ultimate storyteller and everything there is hand-drawn. They sat me down at a desk and gave me a pencil’. After McQueen’s she decided to go it alone with her own designs printed on to silk squares. She made her first collection, which sold, ‘to all my mum’s friends’, and it funded the next. Sabina’s designs are rich with detail, each one taking between 4 and 6 weeks. she started her business at 22 and it now sells in Fortnum and Mason and worldwide with America her biggest chunk. Her latest collection, Panchatantra is based on an ancient Indian book of moralistic animal stories. Tune in for more and visit to feast your eyes.

Richard Miers House Guest Podcast

Episode 4: How to Design a Garden for RHS Chelsea Flower Show with Richard Miers

My House Guest this week is garden designer Richard Miers who will be showcasing a garden next week at Chelsea. ‘I’ve always wanted to do the RHS flower show, it’s a bit like Everest for a garden designer,’ he explains, ‘always there as the ultimate challenge’. The garden is sponsored by Perennials, the gardeners’ charity, which inspired Richard’s theme of love and nurture. ‘I knew i wanted it to be enclosed and sheltered so you get the feeling of being looked after, that’s what the charity does, it cares about the horticultural community’. Richard gives an insight into the process of design, and how he is bringing in elements never been seen before at Chelsea. ‘It’s been an incredibly tense few weeks’, he says, ‘i’ve had to up my game’. Tune in for more.

What To See at Chelsea Flower Show 2022

Morten Warren yellow border and house guest label

Episode 3: Morten Warren on Audio and Light Technology

Today’s House Guest is Morten Warren, well known in the industrial design world for his work with Philippe Starck and global brands such as Bang & Olufson and Samsung. Zuma is his new baby – Morten had a light bulb moment when renovating his home and wondering why so much wiring was needed for sound and technology. Zuma puts everything you need into one light fitting – the alchemy of design and technology which is wowing the interiors world. Tune in for more.

Rob Whitaker house guest podcast

Episode 2: Rob Whitaker on Tiling 

This week’s podcast is all about tiling – ‘How to get to grips with tiles’. Interiors editor Carole Annett chats to Rob Whitaker, Creative Director and co-founder of Claybrook Tiles. ‘The whole tile world can be a bit of an enigma,’ says Rob, ‘knowing the difference between a floor and wall tile, what’s suitable for indoor or outdoor use. The first question we usually get is, “is it suitable for a wet area”‘. Rob lends a guiding hand through the world of tiles – it has changed enormously over the last few years with the introduction of porcelain tiles which opens up a whole new look. ‘you need to know what you are buying’, says Rob, ‘and where it’s going to be used. Natural materials like terracotta and stone are beautiful but are porous – put in the work initially, make sure it’s sealed properly and look after it – you just need to know what you’re buying’. Tune in for more.

Louise Roe house guest podcast

Episode 1: Louise Roe on Rattan 

‘Rattan makes a statement in an understated way, which is why i think it’s so glamorous,’ says Louise Roe of Sharland England. In this week’s House Guest episode, Louise gives tips on how to decorate with rattan and explains why she fell in love with this most sustainable of materials. A journalist by trade – she has worked with and In-style and is the weekly fashion presenter on This Morning, Louise’s love of rattan was inspired by her Argentine grandmother (Sharland was her maiden name) who, ‘had great style, was a bit rebellious and occasionally naughty’. Louise loves the nostalgia of rattan, its warmth and colour and explains how to use it in a modern home. ‘Going too old-fashioned makes an interior look like a tv set and that’s not ideal,’ she says. Tune in for more.

Have a listen to our season 1 guests: House Guest: The C&TH Interiors Podcast