In our quest for interiors intelligence, we caught up with the wonderful Natalie Osborn, deputy editor of HomeStyle, for tips and advice. If you’ve never given HomeStyle a try, it’s a homes and lifestyle magazine full of fun and inspirational ideas for creating beautiful interiors on a budget. Natalie sources all of their ‘real home’ content, seeking out the beautiful homes of the public and sharing their ideas and know-how. She also writes the decorating features and oversees the food section, so this lovely lady knows a thing or two about getting the best from your home!
Tell us about a reoccurring trend that seems to have endured beyond a phase?
“Without a doubt, Scandi. Blonde wood, geometric prints, Eames-style chairs – I see it time and time again, and it’s always beautiful. It’s also a style that renters can easily try, as white walls are the classic backdrop for this look.
Hang a couple of monochrome pictures with Command Hooks (so you don’t have to use nails), pick up a few geo cushions and hey presto, you’re already halfway to Scandi chic”
Who or what has been your most influential & inspiring designer or interior space?
“This sounds horrendously cheesy, but I’m actually most inspired by the houses we feature in HomeStyle. These are ordinary people with ordinary budgets, but their creativity never fails to impress me. I think there’s a serious level of skill and imagination involved in conjuring up beautiful interiors with nothing but your wits and a couple of hundred quid – or even less”
We’re on a mission to create an enticing dining space, what would be your top tips?
“I would always go for a high-backed chair. It’s so much more comfortable than a bench or stools if you’re sitting for an hour or more. Fill the room with interesting conversation pieces – for example, in mine, I’ve framed a collection of 1930s French sporting magazine covers.
In terms of serveware, take a trip to Sainsbury’s; its new Moroccan collection for SS16 is gorgeous (think indigo blues and Ikat patterns) and starts at just £3 for a bowl. And finally, to inject a quick bit of colour, zone the area with a statement rug – this is a great tip for open-plan spaces, too”
Tell us about your favourite piece of furniture and why you couldn’t bear to part with it?!
“This sideboard (above) was the first piece of furniture I ever bought when I moved out – and it happened completely by accident. I was meeting a friend for a coffee and she was running late, so I popped into a nearby charity shop to have a look around. Long story short, by the time she turned up twenty minutes later, I had offered £150 for it (yes, you can haggle with charity shops – it’s not weird!) and was hiring a van to get it home…”
If you were going to recommend a friend to the Cotswold Company, how would you describe us?
“I already have – on countless occasions! I describe you guys as having beautiful and well-made contemporary country furniture, with surprisingly affordable prices”
If you love Natalie’s chest of drawers, take a look at our Wiltshire Painted Range to achieve a similar look.