Escapism Through Interiors

Tessa Jones in Interior Design Trends — 20.04.2020

Whether searching for new ideas, or a moment of escapism we will always find solace in beautiful interiors. Yet over the last few extraordinary weeks we have caught ourselves increasingly seeking out design to distract us (and boost our mood) during these uncertain times. Handpicked by founder, Martin Waller, and our team of experts, we've put together a definitive list of the top interior's books, instagram accounts and podcasts to aid your escape. Giving you permission to lose yourself in a few hours of guilt-free scrolling into world class artistry, creativity and inspiration.

Matthew Williamson

Photo: Blake's Hotel, London, courtyard designed by Matthew Williamson

Top 5 Interior Design Books

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Anouska Hempel, by Marcus Binney

This retrospective of Anoushka Hempel's extraordinary career underlines her unique talent. Her Blake's Hotel (perhaps the first boutique hotel) opened in London in 1978 and remains hugely influential decades later. Since then her work has expanded across the globe and she is revered for her mysteriously romantic and infinitely elegant interiors.

David Hicks on Decoration

Published in 1966, this is the template for the forest of design books that we luxuriate in today. It covers every aspect of interior design from colours to carpets. Perhaps the first to freely mix antique furniture with contemporary pieces, Hicks' trenchant opinions on taste are as formidable as his timeless designs and are just as relevant and visible in today's world.

The House in Good Taste, by Elsie de Wolfe

The New Yorker declared "interior design as a profession was invented by Elsie de Wolfe". A woman sensitive to the beauty of her surroundings from a young age, her book, first published in 1913, compiles newspaper and magazine articles into a seminal work of ideas that have lasted over centuries.

Mario Buatta, 50 Years of American Decoration

The Prince of Chintz defined the 1980s extravaganza of decoration's zenith. Minimalism swept it all away but his ebullient joie de vivre is self-evident. This extensive book documents and celebrates his decade spanning career, it's lavish illustrations allowing you to get lost in Buatta's multi-layered designs.

Kit Kemp, Design Thread

Kit Kemp has reinvented the way hotels can look. Her fearless approach to colour, pattern and art is a masterclass in how design can transform a space. Design Thread takes us on a visual journey, telling the story of Kit's creative process in the same distinctive style that connects her exciting, energetic and detailed interiors.

Top 5 Interiors Instagram Accounts

@themodernhouse

A showcase of the most lust-worthy homes on the market, each one with its own beautiful story to tell. We love the eclectic mix of design styles which takes us from the Brutalist architecture of East London to an elegant Georgian manor in the heart of the countryside.

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@francesloom

Founded by Kelly Vittengl, Frances Loom displays a carefully curated collection of the most beautiful antiques with a penchant for kilim rugs. Kelly's eclectic style bridges the gap between heritage charm and a fresh, modern perspective, with an emphasis on a love for travel and soulful spaces.

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@archdigest

The international design authority, featuring the work of top architects and designers from across the globe. Every image featured on this account blows us away and we love to have a snoop around the houses of some of the biggest celebrities.

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@matthewwilliamson

The fashion, lifestyle and interior designer (not to mention AM Awards nominee and judge), is a name many people will connect with bold prints and colourful designs. Within this visual diary, Matthew documents his own work alongside that of creative friends', his sources of inspiration and a sprinkling of family photographs to create a feed full of vibrant joy and kaleidoscopic colour.

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@casacrilly

From honest design insecurities to rich nuggets of inspiration and snapshots of daily family life, Ruth Crilly (aka @modelrecommends) gives a real life insight into the trials and tribulations of renovating her Somerset home. The jars of bluebells, flea market treasures and dry stone walling evoke dreamy country living, and we love seeing the slow transition of the seasons documented through the lens of Ruth's beautiful home.

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Top 5 Interiors Podcasts

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The AD Aesthete

The renowned authority on interiors and design have recently released this podcast to discuss all things aesthetic. Each week the hugely knowledgeable host Mitchell Owens is joined by industry professionals to discuss a range of topics, from admiration for design legacies such as Elsie de Wolfe or the Bright Young Things, to interviews with rising talents like Beata Heuman. The AD Aesthete is an all encompassing examination into the world of design and essential listening for those working in or curious about the industry.

The Great Indoors

Designer come TV presenter Sophie Robinson, and Mad About The House founder Kate Watson-Smyth chat about all things interiors in this cheerful and comforting podcast. Through house tours from industry giants like Orla Kiely and Kelly Hoppen, and practical advice on finding your style and playing with trends, The Great Indoors is full of tips and tricks to making your house a home, and a beautiful one at that.

The House Guest

Listen to Country and Town House editor Carole Annett chat with experts from across the world of interiors, including big household names and those who may be less familiar but are equally as influential. The House Guest gives you a unique insight into the inspirations, mantras and vision behind the work and homes of guests such as Kelly Hoppen, Kit Kemp and our very own Martin Waller! The back catalogue of over 50 episodes is a lucrative mine of ideas from world class professionals that you can apply to your own project.

Interior Style Hunter

Now in its second series this podcast is a deep dive into the business of interior design. The host, Grant Pierrus interviews a range of guests from various sectors of the interiors world, including designers, suppliers and business founders. These in depth discussions result in down to earth conversations and wide ranging insights into different aspects of the industry.

99% Invisible

A weekly exploration into the power and process of design, 99% Invisible drills down into the incredible architecture, objects and systems that surround us every day yet often go unnoticed. Award winning host Roman Mars traverses a range of topics, from the Sagrada Familia to the graphics of the Mexico '68 Olympics or the history of the fortune cookie, no subject is too obscure or seemingly unrelated. You can search the back catalogue of almost 400 episodes by category on their website, but each is equally as awe-inspiring as the last. If you're at a loss with where to start, begin with one of our favorites: episode 360 'The Secret Lives of Colour'.

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