My World At Home: Stuart Blakley’s London Flat With Period Charm

A PAD WITH PERSONALITY, Stuart Blakley shares his one-bedroom London flat in BATTERSEA

THE BEDROOM: Is a collage of materials and a riot of pattern. The wallpaper and headboard and canopy are by Sanderson. There are framed Christian Lacroix shirts hanging on the walls.

The name Lavender’s Blue is derived from the local area: this part of Battersea was lavender fields in the 18th century. I live of Northcote Road which is a wonderful urban village, a bit like Ranelagh in Dublin. My apartment is the ground floor of an 1890s former commercial building, badly converted in the 1980s when most of the original character was stripped out. My aim was to reinstate a period feel: I decided on an Irish country house attic look (I’m on the board of the Irish Georgian Society in London and love visiting country houses for inspiration). The interior is part based on Irish country houses of relatives and friends I visited as a child, so there’s a sense of nostalgia. I did vital structural work and installed new hardwood exterior doors and windows, and cast iron radiators. The floors are original, scraped, dyed and lacquered – I lost count of the layers! Over ten years, I have searched for antiques in Amsterdam, Brussels, Buenos Aires, Lisbon, Paris, Rotterdam, Savannah, Georgia, Francis Street in Dublin and Tyrone. By taking my time, I think I have achieved a layered, timeless look, opting for strong colours and playing with scale, whether in artwork or pattern, to create an illusion of space. The ceiling is eleven feet high, so the rooms are airy, despite the flat being small. I also divided the rooms with curtains made by a great seamstress in Watterson’s store in Omagh, to maximise space.

THE DRAWING ROOM: The wingback chair is from The Sofa Workshop; the 1860s bamboo-style table is from Ballinderry Antiques; the handamde Afghan rug is from The Suitor Gallery, Ballygawley.
THE KITCHEN: Has a blue and white theme. The delft tableware was collected in Holland and Portugal.
THE ENTRANCE: Blakley designed the wooden panelling in the hallway himself. Some of it conceals secret cupboards.
THE INNER HALL: Blakley’s favourite pieces are the framed plans of a house grandfather built in Co Down. “When it comes to hanging art, I think the key is to consider the grouping as a whole: I enjoy mixing shapes and sizes.” Dark purple walls and a charcoal grey ceiling make his collection stand out.

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