Abigail ahern
Abigail Ahern
Insider

Abigail Ahern

June 2016

At home with the style maven

You'd be hard pressed to find a more irreverent figure in interior design than Abigail Ahern, queen of seriously cool and glamorous interiors. Abigail’s unique approach to home decoration has gained her a cult following as she blazes the design trail with her signature dark, inky hues and eclecticism.

We caught up with Abigail to ask her some quick-fire questions and get a peek into her little black book of London!

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Living room my pad mirror wall madison grey hydrangea cream moroccan

A bit about yourself:

I’ve been in the interiors biz a long time. I started out as a stylist in my earliest days, and trained as an interior designer in the States. I opened my very first store in 2003, and now I’m a retailer, designer, blogger and author (with not enough hours in the day!). We have two stores in London, including our brand new flagship store, and stock with other retailers such as Selfridges and Heal’s in the UK, and Terrain in the US. We’ve launched our own label and are now working with manufacturers and artisans across the world to design and create our ceramics, furniture, lighting, paints and faux plants to sell to other retailers.

Where you live and who you live with:

I live in a Victorian townhouse in East London - Dalston more specifically. It’s me, my husband Graham and our two dogs Mungo and Maud, otherwise known as the two M’s!

Favourite/coolest item in your home:

My favourite piece is a sculptural Willy Guhl concrete chair that I bought 13 or so years back. I remember my husband being crazy mad at that purchase! We were renovating the house at the time and had no seating at all, so I had set out to buy something loungy and comfy and instead I more than blew the whole budget on this one concrete chair. We had nothing else to sit on for a year. I don't think he will ever let me forget it.

Living room wild bill beni mguild vintage moroccan carpet bouquet sofa
Bedroom spring mud beaded chandelier blossom spray madrugada throw
Kitchen dining notte pendant shaggy palm lamp abigail ahern

Fail-safe decorating trick:

I always paint everything out in one colour, because it really opens up the room.

If you paint everything out in the same hue - walls, floor, ceilings, woodwork, windows, radiators, literally everything! - it removes boundaries and instantly creates the illusion of more space.

Living room my coffee table mimosa boston fern branch abigail ahern

First thing you thought of this morning:

Coffee

A talent you wish you had:

Artist

Advice to your younger self:

Trust your gut

Favourite band of all times:

Angus & Julia Stone

Your style icon:

Kelly Wearstler

Favourite /least favourite colour:

Favourite = black (or Madison Grey!).

Least favourite = pastel anything.

Best way to de-compress:

Gardening

Cats or Dogs:

Dogs

Study home office studio bookshelves twin wall sconce bronze head
Study home office my studio nook lola convex mirror maroc tribal rugs
Kitchen

Abigail's Little Black Book of London

Coolest thing about London:

Borough Market
 

Where you like to hang out:  

Walking on Hampstead Heath or an early morning swim at London Fields lido.
 

Favourite restaurant/ bar /café:

Street Feast is my all-time favourite haunt. It's a night market in Dalston Yard (my ‘hood) that runs all summer. The food and drink is incredible, from amazing Korean burritos and crispy fried chicken to a gin store, and tequila treehouse.

I love the casual vibe - you plonk down on benches and load up on whatever takes your fancy. Even though it’s super urban in the heart of Dalston, as the light fades and the fire get lit it turns truly magical!

And anywhere I can take the two M's is always a plus in my book.

Top 3 local stores:

One of my favourite spots in London is Criterion Auction House on Essex Road. This isn't a hip place in any way – it’s dusty, a little dingy and often hit and miss but I've found the most incredible pieces there.

I also love Columbia Road market.
 

Top 3 online interior stores/brands:

Merci – Paris

ABC Carpet & Home – New York

Rossana Orlandi - Milan

Bedroom cosy corner beni ouarain vintage moroccan carpet crosby paint
Living room my pad inky print catkin branch angus art abigail ahern faux

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