Inside Henry's House...the fashion designer shares his interior styling secrets
He's the master of bold prints and colour clashing, but even Henry Holland got an attack of the jitters when it came to decorating his first home...
I was recently invited down to the launch of Henry's second collaboration with Habitat which is exactly the kind of riot of colour and prints that we've come to expect from the guy with the best quiff on the catwalks.
The range takes inspiration from his Spring Summer 2017 Ready To Wear collection and sees punchy ginghams paired with bright boho florals. Subtle it ain't...
There's also a slogan cushion (well, it wouldn't be a House of Holland collection without one would it?) and a curvy fuschia pink cocktail chair which I dare you to try and ignore. You can see the full collection here. It's not for the faint hearted that's for sure and it got me wondering what Henry's own house was like.
So at the party I pulled lovely Henry away from his showbiz mates Nick Grimshaw and Pixie Geldof and we sat down for a quick chat about the actual House of Holland (see what I did there?).
Soooo, given that this is your second collection for Habitat, are you interiors obsessed?
I am now, but I wasn't always, I have to admit. When I first started getting into doing my house up it was a bit of a guilty pleasure. Then when I did my first collection for Habitat last year I realised how many of my friends were so into it as well. If I send out invites for my shows, my friends are all like: "Hmmm, yeah we'll try to make it down if we're not doing anything else." But when I invite people to the Habitat launch everyone was like, "OMG, will I get a free cushion?" All of a sudden we've become people who care more about free cushions than free drinks. How did that happen?
Like now I walk into my friends houses and ask questions like: "Where's your side table from?" What the fuck is that about? So yeah after the first collection I realised it wasn't just me who was obsessed and I didn't have to keep it on the down low.
When did the obsession start?
When I bought my first house in Hackney two years ago. It does take over your life. When you're renting every bit of your money goes on your wardrobe. Well, it does if you work in fashion. But once you buy a house every bit of your money goes on your actual wardrobe, or a sofa, or cushions etc. It's an age thing isn't it?
Now you own your own house, how is it decorated?
You might be surprised to hear that I painted everything white and went for stripped wood floorboards!
Yeah I did! I think because it was my first house I was a bit wary about doing anything that felt too permanent. I was still in that renting mentality. So I put all of the colour, pattern, print and character into the artwork, cushions and throws instead. Because I think you've never put that much money into anything before, so when you're looking at a sofa for like £2000 you freak out a bit and play it safe and go for the grey one, then you can go bolder on the small things which are easier to change. That's what I did. And that's why the collections for Habitat have been all about the cushions and the throws and the soft furnishings which can be quite seasonal. A £50 cushion you can get rid of after a year, whereas a £2k sofa you can't really.
Now you've got more used to this home owning malarkey, are you ready to take any risks on more permanent items?
Yes! Do you know what I really, really want? A yellow sofa. I don't know when I'll get one but I'm obsessed.
You talk about playing it safe, but this collection is still very bold. Who is the House of Holland x Habitat customer?
I think you come to us for the same reason you come to my fashion collections. Why would people buy a homeware collection from me if it wasn't linked to what I do? Black velvet is not me. I'm all about bold print and colour. This collaboration is directly linked to my fashion collections. It's transient and very trend led. Hopefully people will approach this Habitat collection as something which can be swapped and changed. It's homeware for fashion enthusiasts.
I also wanted it to be accessible for people who don't own their own homes yet. Cushions and throws are all things you can take with you if you're renting. I even designed the chair to make it small enough to take with you.
Are there any plans to expand the collection beyond soft furnishings and do more furniture?
I've love to do more with shape. I didn't realise how much I loved furniture until I got this gig. My mum is an antiques dealer and she buys me stuff all the time so I actually have a massive collection of furniture. If she sees something she thinks I'll like, she'll just buy it. I can't even fit it all in my house. Honestly, my office is full of stuff she's bought me. I need a bigger house.
Who do you follow on Insta for interiors inspo?
I love @uglydesign. It's amazing. It's all about really mental design like tables with mannequin bases. But every now and they post something on the feed that I actually really like!
And on that note, I'll leave you with this stunner...
Thanks Henry x