If you follow Emma Thatcher on Instagram, whether it's her personal style account or the one she shares with her friend Louise Redknapp as A Style Album, you'll know she's a dab hand at putting an outfit together. The former stylist loves mixing high end, high street and vintage clothes and truffling out trends that translate to real life. But does the same apply to interiors? For the first in our new Interiors Notebook series, we talked to Emma about the power of Pinterest and why her dream home has been a long time coming…
We were looking to buy a house in the town where our kids go to school but couldn’t find anything in our budget that we liked, so one day I looked a little bit out of the area, found this house and I fell in love with it the minute I saw it. It was so quirky and different to anything I’d ever seen. It’s an old coach house – there are courtyards, places where they used to keep the hay and the horses, and the jockeys used to stay there as well. The previous owners had been there for 20 years; they’d done their own DIY over the years and there were wires hanging everywhere. It was a bit of a death trap – freezing cold with no insulation.
'I had to convince my husband to buy it because he was not interested! I went to see it on my own first and texted him 'I'm in love with it' and he knew then he was in trouble! We spent a long time working out what we wanted to do with it because we knew it was going to be a big job. As the project has taken so long, I've had time to make really considered decisions about the interiors and not rush into anything. I've had Pinterest boards forever! And because our previous house was for sale for two years, that really got me thinking about what I wanted to do with the next house - I knew exactly which kitchen I wanted from the start.'
'We did up our first home when I was in my early twenties and my taste hasn't really changed too much over the years. We had exposed brickwork and flagstone flooring which I'm doing again in this renovation. Soho House style is my dream interior - it doesn't really date. We knew we wanted Crittall windows, and I think once you've got those and a nice kitchen, everything else flows. You pick up little bits and pieces over the years to make it your home. We will be bringing stuff from our last place into this house - a friend of mine has a company called Upholstory and we've got a lot of our sofas from her which we will be getting reupholstered again. We've got some Andrew Martin chairs that I'll be bringing over and I've just bought the Manette bed in green velvet. I'm really into green and pink velvets so I'm going to find a pink velvet chaise longue for the bedroom.'
'Atmosphere makes a house a home. I like to light candles and make the rooms cosy with nice music playing. It's about making people feel relaxed, which is exactly what Soho House is excellent at. I'd have to say Babington is my favourite House, as I got married there 10 years ago. It's got something special about it and it's where I first fell in love with that style of interiors. I've got quite a relaxed style, mixing high and low end, dressy and casual. My personal style has a lot in common with my interiors; I don't like anything too 'done' and again love to mix high and low pieces. I guess touches of 1920s and 1930s mixed in with current pieces.'
'I guess things are more accessible now due to everything being online and you get so much inspiration through social media. How would I do up a home with Instagram and Pinterest?! I'm more comfortable with fashion than I am with interiors, but I know what I like when I see it. With clothes I think Instagram can be really overwhelming, there's always so much to buy, but with interiors I find it really helpful as I need a bit of inspiration and guidance on where to pick up lights and tiles and stuff like that. If I look back on Pinterest boards that I started a couple of years ago, I'm still consistently pinning very similar pictures so it's not changed so much.'
'I definitely want to go to Sunbury antiques market soon, I've been there before when we weren't ready to buy anything for the house, so as soon as it warms up I'll be going there. I'm a fair-weather antiques shopper! Soho Home will always be my first port of call and I'm going to look at Ca' Pietra for tiles as well as doing lots of research online.'
'I would always choose a cosy night in over a big night out. When I finally move into my home, I'm not sure anyone will be able to get me to leave my house again! An Eastern Standard with vodka is my go-to cocktail. I've also just seen Soho Home are selling my favourite rosé, Lady A so I'll be stocking up on that this summer! My signature dish? Takeaway! I can't cook and have no interest. Although I keep telling my family, I'll learn when we have a shiny new kitchen.'
For updates on her renovation project and style tips follow Emma at @emmarosestyle and www.astylealbum.com