We’re always intrigued as to where our Ambassadors take their inspiration from when it comes to their fantastic ranges. This week we caught up with Amanda Holden to learn more about where her love of interiors began, why she’s obsessed with Orla Kiely and which of her celebrity friends has the most stylish home…
QG: When did you first discover your love of home styling?
AH: When I was little and used to have dens in the garden or the fields at the back of our house, I would proudly wait for my grandparents to come down on holidays and I would show them my creations. I might have gathered a log and a twig and a cup and saucer, and I made everything really neat and tidy. We also used to throw a blanket over our swing and climbing frame and turn that into a house. We’d turn the shed at the bottom of my grandparent’s garden into a home too. I think I’ve always had a thing for ‘making homes’.
QG: What is it about Orla Kiely that inspires you?
AH: I think it’s her patterns. I have a retro head and I was brought up in the 70s and had such an amazing time – it was really free. Orla’s patterns take me straight back to the homes of my childhood and I think it’s so clever how she evokes that kind of memory in you, whilst still making her range very modern.
QG: Do you mix decorating styles in your home or stick to one theme throughout?
AH: No, each room has a different theme. We have a very neutral, pale bedroom that Kelly Hoppen would just die for! It’s basically all white with accents of black and the odd bit of gold. Our lounge is yellows, blues and greys. Our kitchen has red bricks on the wall so I’ve picked out that colour in the stripes of the curtains; our fridge is also red, as is our Smeg kettle.
The children’s bedrooms are delicate colours, pink and apple white in Lexi’s and peachy-pink in Holly’s. We also have a yellow guest bedroom. In our cottage, again every room is different. We like colour!
QG: Have you ever had any decorating disasters?
AH: Yes! Before my bedroom was neutral, I decided it might be nice green. But because of the sloping roof it felt like I was inside a hobbit hole. We had to live like that until we could get the decorators back and paint it over. My husband did volunteer but I thought it was best left to the professionals!
QG: What’s your top tip for updating your home decor on a budget?
AH: I say pick a few little pieces that stand out; cushions, throws, lampshades rather than bases, that kind of thing. You can also paint one wall cheaply too, so I would say if you’ve got a fairly neutral lounge, paint the wall that your sofa’s against a different colour. Putting a mirror on one of your walls can make a big difference too.
QG: Out of your friends and family, who has the most stylish home?
AH: I think Angela Griffin. She very much has the same taste as me. This is quite a funny story, she woke up one Sunday after a few too many drinks the night before and suddenly remembered someone was coming round to decorate her kitchen, and she hadn’t picked a colour… so she chose black on a spur of the moment… and it looks incredible! She’s got electric blue cupboards with this one black wall behind it and it looks stunning.
Tamsin Outhwaite has great taste too but she won’t mind me saying that she’s not as tidy as me! I go round her house and say “That’s really nice but that needs to go away, that needs to go in a cupboard, that needs to be in a basket”. She’s much more relaxed – I wish I could be more like her.
QG: We think you’re fine just the away you are, Amanda!