Making a Home…Carolyn Asome
Our second contributor in our ‘Making a Home’ series is fashion and interiors writer Carolyn Asome. Carolyn lives in London with her husband and daughters Decca and Ilse, in a cosy Victorian townhouse filled with unique furnishing and personal touches. We hope you enjoy this small insight into her home and family life.
What makes a home?
The interior guru, Ilse Crawford once said that everything in your home should thrill your fingertips and nothing has stuck more in my mind when setting out to create an inviting home.
Never before have our expectations of a home been so demanding. Home is more than just a place to sleep and eat. It is a place of work, relaxation and entertainment a well as a safe haven of comfort and privacy. Yet it is also somewhere we seek to create an uplifting assault on our senses. Somewhere to breathe out and relax, yet also designed to inspire and energise you, and from which you may draw tremendous support and comfort.
The home I have created for my family is, I hope, somewhere that isn’t too precious. Considered yes, but where everyone is free to be themselves: to not feel as if they have to take their shoes off at the front door or to worry if they have spilt biscuit crumbs. Feel free to tear into any sofa with abandon. Fortunately (and from a practical point of view given I have two daughters under the age of 6), I have learnt to love the beauty of imperfection.
I love colour (sludgy eau-de nil or pale greys and greens, as well as the jolt of a neon yellow) and an interesting patina of textures and textiles. The tall, dark Victorian terraced house in which we live, is a mish mash of Arts and Crafts furniture, Mid-century lighting, brightly coloured print cushions, monochrome Mourne Textiles or graphic Eleanor Pritchard fabrics.
Perhaps like Rebecca Taylor, the New Zealand fashion designer I interviewed recently about her Brooklyn brownstone, my house is in many ways inspired by the servants quarters of Downton. Our kitchen is “state of the heart” not “art”. The cool marble kitchen top and Plain English inspired kitchen units are functional yet simple and classic.
The children’s bedrooms are filled with pictures and doodles as well as Hugo Guiness lino prints. I’ve received an enormous amount of pleasure from curating their bookshelves, filling them with all the books I loved as a child – My Naughty Little Sister, Olga de Polga, and Richard Scarry. As well as delighting in new finds from Alice Melville’s The Highstreet and the beautifully illustrated version of Alice in Wonderland by the Japanese artist, Yayoi Kusama.
I love nothing more than to hunker down together at the end of the day, under striped ticking bedlinen and to lose ourselves in a world of fantasy and adventure.
Words and photographs by Carolyn Asome