At Home With… Joanna Hauptman of Hyde House

Hyde House was born when… I couldn’t find the right furniture for my new home within my budget. I designed each piece and commissioned my partner and furniture maker, Richard Searle, to make them. The feedback from our friends and family was overwhelmingly positive so we decided to launch Hyde House. We’ve created a collection that is elegant and luxurious, unique and bespoke, yet truly affordable.

Before designing furniture I was… a fashion manager and promotions director. I designed creative solutions for top brands like Harrods, Selfridges and Louis Vuitton. The bespoke side of fashion has really influenced me. Just as a fashionista hankers after a Herm├ęs Birkin bag, more and more clients are looking for unique, well made British furniture.

The relationship between interiors and fashion is… symbiotic. Many trends from the catwalks of Milan, Paris, New York and London directly influence finishes and styles, such as metallics, animal prints, and monochrome. Even black patent, which has been huge this season in bags and accessories, is evident in the use of black lacquer furniture finishes.

I live in… north west London. I would describe my home as ‘luxuriously contemporary’ – predominately monochrome with muted shades. The finishes and textures add a sense of contrast – think mirrors, rock faced marble, metallic paint, and of course lots of exotic skins! My aim was to create a home that takes your breathe away yet is comfortable enough to live in and bring up a family.

I covet… designs by Fornasetti. They are mostly monochrome and full of wit, with a very graphic element.

I like using silver leaf and lacquer… it creates a real elegance and an injection of glamour and sensuality.

The best way to inject colour into a room… is by using scatter cushions. Satin, high velvet chairs, buttons, stripes, black, creams and taupes are very popular but bright cushions will give vibrancy to a room.

It’s all about being clever… with your upholstery. If you know it’s going to get a lot of use then pick something durable – a metallic leather coffee table will last a long time and still look great.

One of my greatest inspirations is… Dorothy Draper. Her use of stripes was brilliant.

The future of the interiors industry will be… anything British made. Buying furniture manufactured in this country avoids the ecological damage of shipping thousands of miles and supports British businesses.

This year’s interior trends will… return to more classic pieces that are sturdy, luxurious and designed with longevity in mind – nobody wishes to waste money in a climate like this. Luxury is an important trend because more people will be spending time at home and in turn, will want to create a real sanctuary.

The credit crunch has… encouraged people to make more educated decisions about buying furniture. Customers are investing in solid pieces that will last them a long time.

Bespoke is great because… you can see 40 or 50 finishes before you decide which one is right for you. Everyone is a different shape and size and it’s the same with furniture – you might want a table for your hall while someone else wants it for their atrium.

We do every type of fabric you can imagine… from faux furto reptile skin. We’ve had some unique requests – we were asked to make a head board in real lizard skin. It was a pretty arresting product!

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