An ever popular style, the classic lines of Georgian furniture add the essence of grandeur to an interior. We speak with Georgian and Regency interior design specialist Sarah of Latham Interiors to bring you her top tips and key furniture picks.
How would you describe your signature style?
Classically English with contemporary twists suited to the period property. Clean lines, elegant but with character.
You developed a passion for interior design at a young age, what part of the role do you enjoy most?
Yes, my father was a conservation architect which had a big influence on me. Like most interior designers I am drawn to the creative process and I love working with people so it’s very rewarding getting to know my clients throughout the process.
Known for your leading knowledge in Georgian properties, what must you consider on each project?
Most properties I work on are listed so there are restrictions and constraints. It also brings a certain responsibility to work sensitively with the building. Consideration must be given to the history of how the building has evolved, to what previous architects and designers were intending. Then you need to marry that up with the current owners requirements for the way they want to use and live in the house. A good example of this is the desire today for en-suite facilities. Originally Georgian houses wouldn’t have had bathrooms in. These facilities would have been added later. However, it is common for them to neither be located in the best place or to be specified to today’s standards.
What is your favourite aspect of the Georgian style?
There are so many aspects of a Georgian property that make them a joy to work on. They have wonderful proportions, high ceilings, large rooms, numerous beautiful windows and grand features such as staircases. As a result such houses enjoy an abundance of natural light and provide a fantastic backdrop for decorative artificial lighting schemes.
Your key interior design tip for any project?
Plan your spaces to include switches and sockets in relation to your furniture and the way you will move through the rooms. Don’t forget where you will want to position your Christmas Tree!
This year saw the launch of your show flat in Bath, what was the biggest hurdle? And what did you enjoy most?
Being my own client was both a hurdle and a freedom that I struggled with and enjoyed in equal measure. Designing the show flat in the hours around my main client commitments meant that I was often struggling to find the time to meet my self-imposed deadlines. (I set a launch date for clients and media to attend that was immovable). I changed my mind dramatically on the colour scheme, part way through, as I got to know the flat better and appreciated just how light and airy it was. So my design flipped from being a dark gentlemans club style to a more contemporary, open interior that celebrated the light, scale and proportion of the space.
How do you go approach inspiration and sourcing?
My inspiration tends to come from the properties themselves and my clients. I can’t really explain it but I usually get an immediate sense of what styling will work in a property – and this is never quite the same despite the focus on a specific period. This is then overlaid with the style preferences of my clients. Once I have that vision I am usually looking to find imagery that will help convey that to my client as a sanity check before we move into the design stages. So Pinterest, Eporta, Houzz can all help with that.
Once I had the vision for the space and the styling sorted I used a variety of sources to find key items for the space. In this case I found Eporta particularly helpful in identifying key statement pieces such as a convex mirror that sits proudly high up above a doorway and some quirky accessories.
About Latham Interiors
Established in Surrey in 2010 by founder and Interior Designer Sarah Latham, Latham Interiors specialises in residential interiors for period, and in particular Georgian properties. In 2016 Latham Interiors opened a show home and office in the city of Bath.
Sarah studied at both the Interior Design Institute and National Design Academy and, being the daughter of a renowned conservation architect, developed a passion for Georgian interiors from an early age. Her in-depth knowledge of period architecture and her versatility as an interior designer won Latham Interiors the prestigious Guildford Design Award for best Refurbishment 2011 and led to them being shortlisted for RICS South East Award 2012. The Latham Interior Blog ‘Georgian Regency Interiors’ has also been shortlisted for ‘Best Interior Designer Blog’ at the Amara Interior Blog Award 2016.
Latham Interiors are an Associate of the British Institute of Interior Design (BIID) and active members of The Regency Society and The Georgian Group, and Sarah also writes regular features on interiors for The Listed Property Owners Cub Magazine.
Recent projects include a Georgian House in Surrey, the restoration and design of a Georgian Manor House in Oxfordshire, a Georgian Rectory in Nottinghamshire, a Regency Townhouse in North London, a Victorian Townhouse in Surrey and a Gentlemen’s club smoking room in St James, London.
Get the Georgian look with Sarah’s top 10 pieces on eporta:
A stunning pair of large Oval Georgian Mirrors giving you the opportunity to enhance light, space and symmetry
The Sofa & Chair Co
The elegant and classic lines combine with contemporary piping detail to make a sophisticated and stylish sofa
Upholstered headboards have made a huge come-back but finding a shapely buttoned one like this is not easy
Their pieces are beautifully made. There’s always room for a pair of demi-lunes in a Georgian property
Maps and globes chart the world at different points in time. They are both decorative and fascinating. When presented in this elegant coper stand it would feel right at home in any of our interiors.
Chapel St London
Wing chairs were designed for the drivers of dinner guests sat waiting in the draughty halls of their masters hosts. This leather chair conjures up that very scene for me and would work fabulously in a grand hallway.
We work with Oficina Inglesa a lot, their pieces are timeless. The classic form of this console is cleverly juxtaposed by the contemporary colour.
Persian Rugs are the ultimate luxury. I am loving the faded grandeur and simplified colour combination of this contemporary take on a classic.
Paired-back and delicate this floor standing mirror features antique mirror glass and the option to customise.
Good standard lamps are hard to find. This one would be ideal in a Gentleman’s study or a Library room.