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Introducing Candy Murray, our Soho Home Interior Style Manager

We chat to the head of our new Soho Home Design programme about her inspirations, styling tips, and favourite spaces around the world

Introducing Soho Home Design, a service that gives SOHO HOME+ members access to expert advice and product suggestions. For a glimpse of what's to come, we talk to our Interior Style Manager, Candy Murray, about her background, personal style, and top design tips.

How would you describe your personal interiors style?

'My style is constantly evolving. We live in a modern property, so I always yearn for the high ceilings and proportions of a period home. I've tried to keep the walls clean and fresh, and then installed vintage and bespoke furniture, as well as statement sculptural lamps to add character and interest. And I've added lots of planting to soften the modern edges.'

What inspires you?

'I'm most inspired when I travel ­- everything is so new and your senses are on overdrive. I loved India for its explosion of colour and noise, but also for its beautiful old Maharaja palaces in Rajasthan. I have hundreds of photos of the Jeepneys in Manila as well, which are these completely mad and colourful hand-painted buses.'

You’ve worked as part of the House design team for a number of years. What do you think makes a Soho House interior?

'First, the design team starts with the existing architectural details and creates a design that is sympathetic to the building's narrative, so there is an authenticity underpinning the spaces. We also focus on the customer experience - the scale of the furniture is generous and we design a lot of bespoke furniture, so we can play with size and proportion to ensure there's a certain level of quality and comfort.

'The lighting is also key. There's always a blending and layering of light - from bespoke chandeliers to wall lamps and table lamps - to change the mood throughout the day. And candlelight is added at night. Finally, it's all about the details. They may be subtle, but when you look around the spaces you may notice a trim on a curtain or the contrast piping around a cushion. It's that attention to detail that sets them apart.'

What are some of your favourite spaces in our Houses around the world?

'It depends on the weather. On a cold, grey day in London, you've got to find a squashy sofa in front of one of the fireplaces at Greek Street. With Greek Street, it's the intimacy of the spaces and the classic design details that make it stand out.

'Sometimes, though, it's not the interior but the exterior that's special. This is the case with the terrace at DUMBO House, which has an incredible view of Brooklyn Bridge and the New York skyline stretching in front of you. I also love the stripped-back simplicity of Soho Roc House. Plus, you can lounge around in a hammock watching the sun go down. What could be more idyllic than that?'

Do you have a favourite project that you’ve worked on during your career?

'I have. I designed a small luxury fashion boutique in central London. It was a quick project, so it was very hands on. I went to timber yards and worked with the supplier to create a bespoke floor pattern. I also visited tile factories and metalworkers for the finishes and patterns, and ran around antiques markets and shops to source the perfect vases and objects to dress the space. I loved the process - sketching ideas with the craftsmen and seeing those ideas being skillfully made in front of you.'

What are the top pieces that every interiors lover should invest in and why?

'First, if you have hard floors you have to invest in a 100% wool rug. A Persian-inspired rug works just as well in a minimal contemporary home as it does in a period home, and feels amazing underfoot. It will ground the room and help to define the space.

'Second is a vintage armchair. Look at the form when choosing one - are there special details or does it have an interesting frame? You can always get it reupholstered if the fabric is not to your taste. It will be so versatile. Use it as a reading chair in the corner of a room or, even better, you can buy a matching pair to sit opposite a sofa or at the end of a bed.

'Then, it would have to be a statement table lamp. I love a dramatic oversized base. Look for interesting natural stone finishes, glazes, or pops of colour. In the daytime, it's aesthetically sculptural and bold. And at nighttime it's functional, creating warm cosy lighting.'

What sorts of tips can you help our SOHO HOME+ members with?

'Whether they're deciding which cushions to buy for their sofa or refurbishing a whole room, we can offer advice and product recommendations. There's also practical advice: how do you measure a room to ensure the furniture will fit? How much space should you leave behind a dining chair? Will that light fitting hang too low?'

Learn more about the Soho Home Design interior designer service here.