Thursday, 11 November 2010

Yorkshire Post Readers' Questions

Every quarter I answer Yorkshire Post Readers' interior design queries as part of my column.  They can ask about any subject at all.  Here is what they came up with in the last couple of months.

Q: We have just inherited a 1960s Ercol dining table, it is finished in light wood and we want to get some dining chairs to go with it that are unusual. SH, Knaresborough.

Ercol was a huge name in furniture in the 1960s, but fell out of favour in later decades. However, prices are beginning to quickly increase as vintage rises to the fore. This furniture is beautifully made and their clean design lines are amazingly contemporary. If you want to avoid scouring specialist shops for a set of matching chairs, I would recommend the new Masters chair by Kartell. This stunning design was created by Philippe Starck and is a reinterpretation of the Series 7 chair by Jacobsen, the Tulip chair by Saarinen and the Eifel Chair by Eames. It is available in red, black or white and at £120 I think it is a bargain that will become a design classic in no time at all ( – 0207 739 9427).

Q: We are decorating our sitting room with an oriental inspired theme, but struggling to find a ceiling light that is not hideously expensive. We have high ceilings so would like something fairly dramatic if possible. TB, Harrogate

I would head straight for one of Gong’s eastern inspired ceiling lampshades. They have a range of light, oversized, interesting silk shades which will definitely complement an oriental theme. There are two different designs available (Lea & Lotus) which come in various sizes. The lamps are hand made in the Far East and covered in silk featuring two layers of fabric so you cannot see the bulbs. The Lotus lamp is available in white silk, whilst the Lea ceiling light (pictured) is available in a variety of finishes with the option of a black trimmed frame. Prices from £95, visit or call 0207 370 7176.

Q: We have just purchased a Period house and wanted to work with a traditional colour range, but are not sure if there are any ranges of paint that are particularly appropriate. Could you point us in the right direction? JL, Skipton

The Little Greene Paint Company has worked with English Heritage to develop a range that reflects the true historical colours used in decoration. The colours are split into five key time periods – Georgian; Regency; Victorian; 1930s and 1950s – which are marked clearly on their colour charts. Every purchase from the range also means a generous donation goes to English Heritage – so you are also helping to preserve some of our nation’s great treasures. The range is available in all of Little Greene’s standard finishes including their Ultimatt Emulsion (a matt finish, environmentally friendly and completely washable paint – ideal for heavy usage areas such as halls, kitchens and bathrooms). Prices from £13.50 ( – 0845 880 5855).

Q: We have a travertine floor which is really beginning to look grubby despite regular mopping. What would you suggest to bring it back to its former glory? BB, Todwick.

If you are seeing ground in dirt you need to get back to basics. Start by stripping off your existing floor coating using the appropriate cleaner which will have a dramatic effect. You will then need to re-apply a sealant to keep this look pristine. Natural floors do require regular maintenance, so I would expect to repeat this every year or so to keep things looking tip top. I prefer the range of products available from Lithofin which includes wax-off, multi-seal and anti-slip; as well as an easy care formula that is great for regular use throughout the year once you have taken the trouble to strip back and re-apply (; 01962 732 126).

Jamie Hempsall is a member of the British Institute of Interior Design and an award winning interior designer. If you have an interior query you need answering call him on 0800 032 1180 or visit


No comments:

Post a Comment