Welcome to series 2 of House Tours Open Door. We've been busy filming gorgeous homes over the summer, filled with cool and clever ideas from their creative owners.
We plan to beam you into eight jaw-dropping homes, to hear from the owners and to get under the skin of exactly what makes a place special. Inspiration from the comfort of your living room? Sounds like a double win.
EPISODE 7 - AT HOME WITH DAVE BENNETT
Fashion Marketing Consultant, Dave Bennett, has opened the doors to the elegant Georgian home he shares with his husband Gareth Orr, where modern-day masDave and Gareth had decided they wanted a genuine period house, but one that wasn’t a typical family home.
Then this Grade II-listed Georgian townhouse in a fashionable north London neighbourhood caught their eye. At 1,800 square feet, there was plenty of space, but the conventional layout jarred with their lifestyle. terpieces rub shoulders with junk-shop finds against a palette of historic hues and luxe materials.
The couple spent the first year sorting out the structural stuff, damp issues and so on, which meant they had time to live in the house, consider how the light worked and how best to rejig the rooms to suit them.
Originally arranged as a traditional four-bedder, the thoughtful rethink saw the house transformed into something much more them: a deluxe two bed, with various entertaining spaces, all drenched in the personalities of its owners.
The bland, all-cream colour scheme was jettisoned in favour of atmospheric and historic hues of grey, purple and green, used as a backdrop to enhance the elegant pieces of bespoke joinery, luxe surfaces and rich, masculine materials, such as walnut, marble and slate.
For inspiration, the couple borrowed more from a mid-century aesthetic than from the Georgian roots you might expect.
As a result, furniture by a wealth of designer names peppers the rooms, especially when it comes to chairs, with pieces by Charles and Ray Eames, Norman Cherner and Hans J Wegner all getting a showing.
But for all the luxurious flourishes in the main living spaces, the kitchen is the couple’s go-to spot for relaxing.
Having toyed briefly with traditional timber kitchens, eventually they settled on a bespoke Jack Trench design. Replacing an elderly Ikea number, it delivers a sleek mélange of walnut cabinetry and marble work surfaces and there’s a cool central island, perfect for food prep as well as for socialising.
Most importantly, the house’s abundant wall space allows the pair to accommodate all their accumulated artwork.
A red stair carpet injects a pop of vibrancy to the neutral scheme.
SHOP DAVE'S KEY PIECES
Instead of white for a gallery wall, Dave opted for purple as a backdrop to a mix of high and low end art works, which come from junk shops as well as galleries.
Shop now: The walls are painted in Farrow & Ball’s Pelt estate emulsion.
Shop now: Find the Cherner chair by Norman Cherner at Aram Store.
Designer icons and selected artwork showcase the couple’s style.
Shop now: The bed is by De La Espada.
Shop now: Find the Saarinen Tulip side table for Knoll at Heal’s.
Shop now: The Eames Stool A (aka ‘Time Life’) is available from The Conran Shop.