My working life started on the Pimlico Road. My walk to work was the beginning of my interiors education. I learnt about Soane, Rose Uniacke, Jamb and of course Howe. Each window would give me an extra piece to muse on to file in my memory. Howe would give me a thousand. I remember one early morning that my face was pressed up to the window genuinely gawping at the pieces inside, when to my embarrassment someone appeared to open the shop. I blushed and rushed along.
Now, after ten years, I have summoned up the courage to go inside. Quite a few times in fact, and every time I have been wowed by the pieces that Christopher has managed to collect. I have also found such pleasure in how they all work so well together. It is an aesthetic that looks easy, but that I know from experience is pretty tough to achieve. As with everyone who I ask to take part in Tete a Tat I much admire Christopher and was pleased as punch that he agreed to give up his time to answer these inane questions.
What is your favourite day of the week?
Saturday for sure, the farmers market, chilled atmosphere in the shop cooking brunch for whoever, putting some vinyl on (records I mean), people have time - Richard Gere popped in on his own looking very relaxed in a baseball cap.
Most definitely, Maggie Jones, it’s still there looking the same and totally amazing, scruffy and unfashionable. It was one of my first jobs helping the owner Neil decorate it way back when. Love to go there with the staff occasionally.
I’m currently reading a lovely book that my goddaughter very thoughtfully gave me called ‘The Land Where the Lemons Grow’, to feed my new found love of Sicily.
My farm in Sicily
What is the worst job you’ve done?
Stacking shelves in a supermarket.
What would your autobiography be called?
“Let’s start again”
Any good advice? Who gave it to you?
“Write it but don’t send it”, an old mate Ian Spencer. There’s one my dad told which it turns out was Aristotle “There is only one way to avoid criticism: Do Nothing, Say Nothing and Be Nothing.”
Best Moment in your career so far?
I suppose it has to be selling King George I’s state bed to Hampton Court back in 1992
What movie can you watch over and over without ever getting tired of?
‘Pulp Fiction‘ it seems, but I’d like to watch Gone with the Wind again or King Kong or Once Upon a Time in America but they’re all 4 1/2 hours long and I don’t get the time. Oh hang on there’s Fitzcarraldo by Werner Herzog with all the stripes. I’ve watched this one 4 times and it’s 5 hours long with a (live) orchestra. Each time I notice something new, like did you know that in 1793 stripes were everywhere? Silk stripes, wool stripes, linen stripes, cotton stripes, on the walls, on furniture, clothes and curtains.
My Ford Transit van, bloody useful and hassle-free
A song that can always make your foot tap?
Daft Punk ‘Lose Yourself to Dance’
Big thanks to Christopher!