Inspiration is an everyday occurrence for Claire Hornby, Barker and Stonehouse’s Creative Manager. Claire and her team are responsible for the interior design and fabulous room sets you see in every store.

Claire Hornby Barker and Stonehouse Creative Manager

We caught up with Claire to find out where she gets her inspiration and asked for her top tips when decorating and furnishing your home.

A Follower of Fashion

Fresh from a trip to the stylish Maison et Objet show in Paris, Claire loved the wonderful rich colours of 2017. With every shade of green on show in Paris, Claire says that’ll be the look for autumn, with sumptuous rich velvets in navy and teal dominating the interiors trends this spring.

Top Tips for decorating your home from Barker and Stonehouse creative manager

One of Claire’s favourite looks from Maison du Objet 2017

“My interest in styling originally came from fashion – and that still really interests me because I believe fashion leads the way for our homes. You see fashion trends reflected in interiors and similarly there seems to be a ten year loop in the industry.

“I really enjoy trend forecasting, picking out the relevant colours and textures that I’ll see everywhere in a few months’ time. “And, I love to work closely with Barker and Stonehouse’s fantastic accessories buyer Sally Coombes to choose the looks for the stores, changing and reinventing a look by introducing slight colour changes and new accessories.”

5 tips from interior expert Claire Hornby

Interior Inspiration

So, where does Claire get her endless interior inspiration from?

“It might be something as simple as going for a walk in the Lake District – the colours and patterns formed by nature – and I’ll think ‘how can I use that somehow in my interior designs?’

I’ll take those inspirations and find ways of bringing those moods, colours and textures in-store. There’s lots of experimenting with wall and floor finishes, flooring, colours and textures.”

Interior tips from creative manager Claire Hornby

A moodboard from our SS17 Into the Blue look

Getting it Right: Claire’s Top 5 Tips

Sometimes it’s the simplest things that help to pull your own scheme together. Here’s a handful of pointers from Claire to help you create the perfect space.

  1. Live in the space for a couple of months to get a feel for it, see how the light is cast and what will fit in before choosing your key pieces of furniture.

  2. Lighting is essential, so make all your lights dimmable and introduce lots of attractive lamps for ambience.

  3. When choosing your wall colour get a tester pot and paint the inside of a cardboard box – you’ll be able to see what the colours look like in all lights.

  4. Don’t set your heart on items until you’ve measured the space and the furniture – and think again if it’s not a good fit.

  5. Don’t be afraid to buy something because you think it might not be on trend next year – if you love it – just change the accessories.

The Barker and Stonehouse Experience

Visiting Barker and Stonehouse is more than just a trip to the shops, says Claire. “Our aim is to inspire and give people choices.”

“We want to mix things up a little, using furniture in fresh combinations and with some exciting decorative ideas. I love to show how so many different looks can be created and to hear people saying ‘wow’.”

Claire Hornby Barker and Stonehouse Creative Manager - top interior tips

Part of Claire’s remit is to create the look and feel of new branches, such as the new Hove store which opened April. “New stores are a blank piece of paper and I am very lucky to have a free hand, as an example the design of the staircases and the materials they are made from – we’ve even created bespoke stain colours for floors.

Barker and Stonehouse is different – from the exciting way the products are displayed to the cafés and living walls we have in some stores – we know that some people really do come, not just to shop but for a day out!”

Discover Claire’s latest looks for spring/summer 2017 here.