October 14, 2011

Perfect English

There is something so endearing to me about English homes. I love looking through British publications for that unpretentious, un-staged, timeless look of comfort and elegance. When I see a gorgeous English home in photographs, reality is suspended for just a second, & I'm sure I could just step through the page, knock on the door and be welcomed by a gracious English host speaking in that lovely British accent, a cup of Earl Grey tea and a chair with overstuffed down cushions to settle into.

Great English houses look like there is never the need to rush around and make everything pristine for guests because the style of the house allows for the beauty of being lived in; the interiors show signs of life and of lives lived fully. Stacks of well-worn books, collected treasures from travels, gathered floral arrangements, displayed family photographs in vintage silver frames and the family pets lying lazily about the house all contribute to the look of imperfect perfection.  The mix of styles and influences strike such a pleasant balance. Furniture with French influence mingles happily with Chinese export porcelain, chinoiserie and bamboo, domestic family heirlooms, floral chintz, and wall-to-wall seagrass carpet.

So with my fondness for English style, you can imagine my delight when I recently discovered Kate Forman, an English textile company that produces pretty linens, decorative accessories, trimmings and wallpapers, influenced somewhat by 19th century French style, and all handmade and printed in England. While inspiration photos from a product line like Kate Forman are certainly staged, the style of the wares themselves are perfectly lent to the look of a "lived-in" English home and lifestyle.

Cushions in a mixture of Kate Forman's printed linens.

Christmas stockings are constructed from a variety of Kate Forman's velvets and printed linens.

A drop-dead gorgeous sofa upholstered in 'Red Velvet', a soft but rich red with a hint of pink.

A chair upholstered in 'Red Ticking' linen fits the current linen-ticking-stripe-rage perfectly. The window shade is 'Roses' in raspberry reds, pinks and sage greens.

A wing chair looking glamorous in 'Red Velvet'. Drapery is 'Isobella'.

Settee upholstered in 'Sage Roses'; window shade in 'Green Ticking'; drapery fabric is 'Sage Eliza'.

Chair upholstered in a classic French check: 'Blue Check' linen, 'Red Ticking' for drapery.

The cat soaks up some sun next to a pretty drapery in linen 'Sprig' trimmed in red 'Pom Pom'.

Window shades in 'Blue Roses'; chairs 'Cameo Ribbons Swedish Blue' and 'Blue Check; tablecloth is 'Blue Eliza'.
Reading chair is slipcovered in 'Roses'.

Just the right shade of blue: drapery in 'Cameo Ribbons Swedish Blue'.

Cushions in 'Blue Velvet' and 'Cameo Rose'.

So pretty in 'Amelia', a faded design with the softest pink and grey.

Bedding in 'Isobella' and 'Pink Ticking'.

What can I say? Is this not the perfect room for the dapper young lad? Bedding in 'Red Ticking' stripe with 'Red Velvet' cushions.

Lamp shade and cupboard drapery in 'Matilda'. Stuffed toy bear in 'Agatha'. 

Upholstery in 'Agatha'; bedding in 'Kitty'.

Chair in 'Duck Egg Christobel'. Sconce shades in 'Cameo Rose'.

Charming pattern mixing with headboard slipcovered in 'Cameo Rose', bedding in 'Blue Roses' and cushion in 'Roses'.

Another mix of patterns: 'Pandora' on chair, 'Cameo Rose' chair cushion and headboard upholstery. 'Red Ticking' appears to have been combined with a plain linen for a creative and attractive window shade.

Bathroom with a light and airy feel outfitted in 'Agatha' linen.

 'Pink Sophia' and 'Agatha' are combined to make a sweet spot to slumber.

These laundry sacks are perfect for travel or hiding the laundry anytime.

For more room inspiration visit Kate Forman HERE where you can also request brochures and cuttings.

Last, but not least, I discovered Kate Forman through the beautiful blog The Paper Mulberry, written by Glenda Steel who is renovating a 500 year old, Grade II listed Elizabethan farmhouse in England. I love going to her site for great room inspiration. Visit her HERE.

Have a beautiful weekend, my friends!



  1. HI so nice to "meet" you!! Thanks for stopping by, so happy to have in turn discovered your wonderful blog. I absolutely love this post, yes to English homes. One of my favorties too and you described their appeal to perfection, its that time worn element that makes them so special and have such character, not necessarily that everything is perfect and shiny. Such beautiful pictures!! Will be back, am your newest follower :)

  2. These are lovely examples of English County decorating.
    Thanks for sharing, Keri!
    ~ Wendi ~

  3. Keri, so wonderful to find you. I adore Kate Forman's design work. Those velvet upholstered pieces are luscious!!

    Oh, I have a Dezigner Pillows Giveaway; I hope you will join in!

    Art by Karena

  4. Oh Keri this post is so GORGEOUS! I adore Kate Forman and you have shown and described the look to perfection!!! I also want to send a hugs hug and a big thank you for the lovely mention and link, so so kind of you! If ever you are in England you must pop in for that pot of tea! Hugs from an old farmhouse in England - Glenda xxx

  5. Tina, I'm so happy to meet you too! I'm so happy to have you following along.

    Karena, Thank you for your comment! I'll pop over to your blog & check I out. The giveaway sounds fun!

    Glenda, Thank you so much! I don't know when it will be, but the next time I'm in England I would absolutely love to meet you!


  6. So cozy and inviting! What a beautiful selection!

  7. I loooooooove your taste and inspiring me a lot!

    thanks and a big hello from Madrid,

  8. Elena, thank you so much! I'm so happy to meet you and have you following. I love the garlic photos you posted on your blog-- just beautiful!

    Claudia, I've been hanging out over at your blog going through old posts for inspiration of all sorts! Thanks for the comment.


  9. Thanks Alisia! I'm glad you stopped by. :)

  10. I so love interior designs and oriental porcelain! I can’t wait to re-decorate my house with all this stuff.

  11. Amazing old school honey comb blinds perth you got there. I know blinds are usually for office but let's try it inside the office.

  12. wow! I love the red-royalty-like couch you have here. I'm undergoing to some re-designing right now and I'm reeling for a princess or queen-like theme. I've been buying several pieces now for my to some furniture stores orange county. I realized that looking for the stuff is not a joke to work on. Thanks for sharing some brilliant about how will I be able to change the way my house like.

  13. The bedding in kitty is very inviting! I think one will experience a quality sleep with that bed. And I think choosing the right bed can be considered as one of the natural sleep aids, a person with sleep disorder can have a good sleep with that bed.

  14. I love English homes too. You are right, there's an elegant yet cozy feel in them. That's why as much as possible, I try to incorporate English-inspired designs in my apartment.

  15. Curtains really does wonders to a house, it makes it more beautiful and homey. I put them in my house too, though I added shutters for added security.

  16. When I visited my high school friend, who is now residing in London, I was awed by her house. It looks basically like this! So elegant yet homey at the same time.

  17. Yes, I do agree with the combination of mixing patterns, it made the room more attractive. I just do wonder if there are also other bedding sets available for this concept.

  18. That desk in front of the window is perfect for ladies out there who loves reading books. I like the theme of that area because it looks cool and relaxing.

  19. No doubt about these pieces being signature English, alright. They remind me of a typical Victorian household, in a way. Such elegant pieces.

  20. There's always something about british furnishings that's quite intriguing. I guess I just find it to be far more intricate than the sets I'm used to back here in the States.

  21. One thing I noticed from all of the furniture is their cushion. Their cushioning is definitely top notch. I think it would feel like you're from the royal family if you own this kind of furniture.

  22. Absolutely, Good design of curtains and it is such a wonderful to have those listed above. It will definitely design my room well.

  23. Those curtains were great! What a good design and style which could satisfy my wife's interest to curtains.


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