JOIN THE CLUB

By | 2018-07-17T11:23:15+00:00 June 6th, 2018|Sliders, TribeLife|0 Comments

Anne Ashworth, Property and Personal Finance Editor of The Times looks at the big new influence on how we decorate our homes – Private Members’ Clubs.

Social media has made copycats of us all. The wealth of images available on the Instagram and Twitter feeds of newspapers, designers and retailers gives us all the opportunity to steal the fashion style of a celebrity or the style of an elegant home. Anyone wanting to carry out a speedy or more extensive makeover can study the elements of a look and devise their own version.

Currently there is a great deal more such restyling going on, as homeowners reconcile themselves to staying put for another year, rather than moving or embark on the ‘staging’ refurbishment necessary to lure viewings in a buyers’ market. The problem, however, is that there are too many options, with new trends arriving on a regular basis. The latest is wabi-sabi, a species of Japanese minimalism with a softer edge. This style movement with its muted shades and emphasis on comfort urges you to cherish rather than chuck or store your belongings such as books – which means that it should be adopted with caution if you are selling your home. Professional staging businesses always advise that you declutter your home allowing the people who come to view to imagine themselves living in the property. Too much personal impedimenta is off-putting, but, so too is an entirely sterile environment. Be a bit wabi-sabi rather than a lot.

Amid such confusing messages, it’s easy to start suffering from decor overload. The remedy is to step away from social media and get out more in Richmond, Barnes and Mortlake and study decor in real life. The most powerful influence on domestic interiors cones from the hospitality industry: bars, club, hotels, restaurants and, increasingly, private members clubs such as those of the Soho House group. These establishments have given us such enduring trends as metro tiles, parquet, industrial lighting and backlit shelving. The love affair with the sleek lines of mid-century furniture was rekindled in hotels and the passion spread to smart sitting rooms. Hanging pictures in groups is another piece of hospitality industry chic. As the walls of an Ivy Cafe in Richmond illustrate, little creates such a powerful feeling of intimacy and warmth. The elegant but understated interior lit by a chandelier from the 1930s creates the wow factor at the Olympic Private Members’ bar where furniture and lights rescued from the SS France create the right balance between elegance and originality.

The spaces in clubs like this are intended to be like a home from home, but this effect is accomplished by observing strict guidelines. The interior design must reflect and evoke the architecture of the building. Each piece of furniture must have a function, even if it is to be a merely a backdrop for a stack of coffee table books: pointless occasional tables are not permitted. The palette is neutral (greys, beiges) but navy and black paint is used to lend a mix of formality and also of edginess (a hint of Shoreditch). There are touches of strong colour: at Soho House’s latest club in White City, red, blue and yellow are employed.

In your study tour of the restaurants, hotels, clubs and bars of Richmond, Barnes and Mortlake and the centre of town, I suggest that you pack a notebook for details of the carefully devised layered lighting and the arrangement of cushions in a booth or on a sofa. The newly re-decorated lobby at the Richmond Gate Hotel is a case in point. As a result of your trip, the pictures of your home on your estate agent’s website are bound to be better. Whatever your plans, your home will be a home in which you would.

The spaces in clubs like this are intended to be like a home from home, but this effect is accomplished by observing strict guidelines. The interior design must reflect and evoke the architecture of the building. Each piece of furniture must have a function, even if it is to be a merely a backdrop for a stack of coffee table books: pointless occasional tables are not permitted. The palette is neutral (greys, beiges) but navy and black paint is used to lend a mix of formality and also of edginess (a hint of Shoreditch). There are touches of strong colour: at Soho House’s latest club in White City, red, blue and yellow are employed.

In your study tour of the restaurants, hotels, clubs and bars of Richmond, Barnes and Mortlake and the centre of town, I suggest that you pack a notebook for details of the carefully devised layered lighting and the arrangement of cushions in a booth or on a sofa. The newly re-decorated lobby at the Richmond Gate Hotel is a case in point. As a result of your trip, the pictures of your home on your estate agent’s website are bound to be better. Whatever your plans, your home will be a home in which you would like to be a guest.

 

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