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Guide: The best interior designer to suit any type of home

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Whether you own a property abroad, a stately home or a studio flat, C&TH helps you choose the perfect interior designer

Here are 10 of the best interior designs for all your interior needs…

Best for Family Homes

Samantha Johnson
Interior designer

Experience I have been working on the interiors of family homes for 12 years where the children are either very young, in their teens or have flown the nest.
Your Style Stylish, timeless, order.
Inspirations Hotels such as The Grove or Coswarth House. They are very individual and appeal to the art lover, the family, the business man and romantic couples stealing a weekend away.
Trends Colour and texture and a wellplanned space will stand the test of time.
Investment Good quality, well-made pieces of furniture that can be renewed and revamped.
Instant Update Fresh flowers or a flowering plant can lift a space and bring life to it as can a beautiful piece of art or sculpture.
Top Tip Use accessories to personalise a child’s room as their tastes and needs change so quickly.

Secret Suppliers:

The Conran Shop
For designer furniture and accessories
William Yeoward
For his beautiful glassware, gorgeous furniture and upholstery pieces and exquisite accessories

Best for Classic Contemporary

Justin van Breda
Interior and furniture designer

Experience Working for Nicky Haslam was a classic contemporary style baptism of fire – there are elements in all my schemes of the things he taught me.
Your Style Layered, elegant, global.
Inspirations Colour, light, history, shape, architecture, art and people.
Trends Always follow colour trends in fashion, interior trends will follow a season or two later.
Investment Art, silver and furniture.
Instant Update Re-arrange things: you can update a room just by reconfiguring it and switching pieces around.
Dream Design Project One I am working on now which is a new-build neo-georgian house in Europe. My clients are collectors and aesthetes.
Top Tip Only buy things you love as you will always find somewhere to put them.

Secret Suppliers:

DKT Artworks
For specialist finishes which we design and they make a reality
Tim Gosling Ltd
For the most beautiful bespoke furniture in England

Best for Stately Homes

Fiona Lansdowne
Interior designer
01249 822422

Experience I have redecorated Bowood House and helped with several other important historic houses. As I live in a large 18th century listed property, I understand the foibles of these houses and how to make them comfortable and practical for the 21st century.
Your Style Grand, comfortable, pretty. Inspirations John Fowler, Imogen Taylor and Tom Parr of Colefax and Fowler, all of whom taught me to respect the history of a house whilst ensuring that its first role is as a family home.
Instant Update Replace tired cushions and old lampshades every few years, you’d be surprised what a difference it makes.
Trends Stately homes do not follow trends so their interiors shouldn’t either, however the days of wall-to-wall chintz are over.
Investment Good upholstery; Howard chairs bought at auction and properly recovered and thebest beds you can afford.
Top Tip Always use the best curtain maker you can find. Expensive fabric in the wrong hands is completely wasted.

Secret Suppliers:

Blanchards Antique Collective
Well priced and pretty antiques in Wiltshire
The Parsons Table Company
For fine British, lacquered furniture

Best for Eco Chic

Oliver Heath
Interior designer

Experience As an eco consultant and BBC presenter I see first hand how design affects people’s lives.
Your Style Contemporary, sustainable, vernacular. inspirations I love the work of American designer Charles Eames, but much of my inspiration comes from listening and thinking about what the client has asked for.
Trends The vintage and retro trends are big. I love the process of restoring vintage furniture. It’s a delight to up-cycle a piece and give it a new lease of life.
Investment Solar panels. instant update Paints are the easy way to make a green change. I use Earthborn natural paints.
Dream Project An eco hotel or an entirely sustainable resort.
Top Tip The colour of your walls impacts your energy bills, so opt for a pale colour to reflect natural light.

Secret Suppliers:

Inwood Design
For sweet chestnut cladding and handcrafted furniture
Alternative Flooring
For fantastic and colourful but sustainable flooring

Best for a London Pied a Terre

Sarah Pritchard
Interior designer

Experience Over the past 10 years I’ve worked on a huge variety of properties; everything from bachelor pads to 17th century town flats.
Your Style Timeless, tailored and transformational.
Inspirations Ever since I was 15, I’ve kept a scrapbook filled with everything that inspires me. It’s something I still do today. It can be anything from fashion to travel or food.
Trends Designers are experimenting with a combination of materials that should be contradictory to one another. Wood is being fused with fashionable metallic shades.
Investment Artwork. And if you have a limited budget, degree graduation shows are a great way of finding stars of the future.
Instant Update Replace cool cottons with cosy cashmere and layer up sumptuous fabrics and throws.
Top Tip Make sure you know you can fit whatever you’re buying through the door, up the stairs… or through a window! Clever and stylish storage solutions are also very important.

Secret Suppliers:

Helena Murray
For her truly bespoke creations for walls and upholstery

Best for Hotels

Martin Brudnizki
Interior designer

Experience We most recently completed Soho Beach House Miami, an 80,000 sq/ft hotel and private members’ club on Collins Avenue in South Beach.
Best Project Probably the studio itself. Martin Brudnizki Design Studio was established back in 2000, and has expanded to over 40 employees. It’s been a whirlwind.
Your Style Eclectic, adaptive, comfortable.
Trends Just like fashion, couture interiors at their very best aren’t reliant on trends and fads.
Invest In Artwork is a great investment. I have a collection of Andrew Norrey’s abstract landscapes.
Instant Update A home interior should be lovingly built over the years, but a good scented candle and a bunch of seasonal flowers will make a massive difference.
Top Tip Hotel furniture should imitate the comfort of a client’s own home with exciting design touches and effortless ease of use.

Secret Suppliers:

Robert Stephenson from Sedilia makes beautiful leather banquettes, bar stools and chairs
Lillie Road, Fulham
The street is lined with the best antique shops in London.

Best for Property Abroad

Kate Hume
Interior designer

Experience I have worked on many properties abroad, professionally and personally: France, Moscow, New York, Mallorca, Dubai, Sardinia, Czech Republic, and the UK.
Best Project A contemporary mansion outside of Moscow.
Inspirations The location and owner.
Invest In Art, always. But it can be cheap or vastly expensive – as long as you love what you’re looking at.
Instant Update Re-cover your furniture and try a new paint colour.
Top Tip Be prepared for the logistical side of working abroad – it’s as important and more time consuming than the design work. We work with local building teams but bring our own subcontractors for all fine finishing.

Secret Suppliers:

Le Manach fabrics
For gorgeous French-luxe fabrics and upholstery
Popham tiles
For fabulous, bold patterned and fun tiles, hand made in Morocco

Best for Swanky Townhouse

Gabriel Bernardi
Interior designer

Experience I’ve been designing interiors and producing bespoke furniture for houses in Belgravia, Knightsbridge and Mayfair. I’ve recently been working on a home in Perth, Western Australia for a client after completing the deco-styled interior of her 122ft Hessen Superyacht.
Your Style Contemporary with a classical and historical perspective.
Inspirations The collections of André Arbus, Jean-Michel Frank and Maison Jansen. I’m also inspired by clients who respect and uphold sound design process and trust me and my building team to help them achieve their vision.
Instant Update Modern gilt metal furniture. Elegant, sturdy and functional. Goes with a number of interior styles.
Current Trends I call it the ‘Hotel Effect’ of creating luxurious interiors that seem slightly devoid of personality, possibly more akin to a hotel than a ‘home’. Your home is the ultimate expression of who you are, for you and your family, so it’s a very personal thing.
Top Tip Get your furniture made bespoke. It’s an exciting and rewarding process.

Secret Suppliers:

The Silk Gallery
A leading UK-based design house for furnishing fabrics
A Shade Above
The quality of their shades is most definitely the key to their success

Best for the Wow Factor

Bianca Ladlow
Interior designer and CEO of Earl Crown

Experience I have been involved in numerous super luxurious projects over the past six years: prestigious Belgravia addresses, bachelor pads in Mayfair and a period town house on South Audley Street.
Your Style Quality, quality, quality.
Inspirations The properties themselves are the inspiration. Each project commands its own style and treatment. They are all unique and bespoke.
Trends I like to make up my own.
Instant Update Accessorise, add colourful art, display books and have really good clean out of clutter.
Top Tip Don’t be too bold and stylised, as this tends to date. Incorporate colours on scatter cushions or throws and keep the main fabrics more tonal. Light colours are important, especially in London, as they make the space feel larger. You can use dark colours in areas that need to be more atmospheric.

Secret Suppliers:

Hermès Home Furnishing
For their beautiful wallpaper collections
Ralph Lauren Home
For light and breezy but classically luxurious furniture and accessories

Best for Restaurants

Jo Sampson
Interior designer and creative director of Blacksheep

Experience I cut my teeth with Terence Conran in the 1990s. With Blacksheep, we have created the restaurants for Fairmont and Marriott hotels and for Jamie Oliver’s restaurants.
your style Bold, unexpected, classic contemporary.
Best Project The Jamie Oliver restaurants. The design has been honest, what you see is what you get and slightly cheeky. We’ve worked within the parameters of Jamie’s personality.
Trends Restaurant design sets the bar for trends. Because we work so far ahead we tend to shoot through trends quickly. Currently, I’m pushing a glam, opulent look.
Top Tip A restaurant must be operationally excellent. There is no point in having a beautifully designed restaurant if food is coming out cold.

Secret Suppliers:

Alma Leather
Fantastic, East End leather upholsterers
VV Rouleaux
For excellent, talking point, accessories – ribbons, piping, fabrics and faux flowers


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