Interior designer Trish Ridley has worked with Barker and Stonehouse in the North East for several years, with many of our clients both longstanding and new. We got the chance to catch up with Trish to gain an inside peek into her favourite brands, trend predictions for 2015, and her key inspirations….

Tell us about what you do and the range of projects you work on:

I have been a freelance interior designer since 1995.  I have worked on show homes for a UK residential builder, 5 star Timeshare resorts and numerous private projects.  For the last 5 years I have also consulted for Barker and Stonehouse as a design advisory service for customers.

Why do you like working with Barker and Stonehouse, and how long have you worked with them?

Having always recommended Barker and Stonehouse to my private clients, I was delighted when the manager Jill Marriott asked me to carry out a design service for their customers.  I am very proud to be linked to such a fabulous company.  The product range is so vast and exciting, and the quality of product and customer service speaks for itself.

I find that most of the clients I visit have been long-time customers of Barker and Stonehouse and they always have good things to say about the company.

What sorts of clients do you work with?

I have lovely clients, ranging from gentle family people who want the best design for their home, to dynamic business people who want the exact same thing – that their home will look stunning.

Where do you draw inspiration from?

My inspiration for design comes from anywhere and everywhere.  It could be a visit to a stately home, a contemporary hotel, or when visiting different countries and cities.  A good design book can be a great pool of inspiration my favourite is Andrew Martin Interior Design Review illustrating projects by the world’s top designers.

What are your favourite brands?

I have far too many favourite brands at Barker and Stonehouse.  If a project is contemporary and big budget it has to be Natuzzi – I love the Brio range at the moment.

I’m in love with the Sole mirror and President curved glass desk from Galloti and Radice, and the B&B Italia side units and shelving systems are also a must.

If the project is more eclectic and glam then there are fab sofa ranges such as the Duresta Wolfgang, Trafalgar or Delphine ranges.  The Timothy Oulton range is just so exciting and quirky – love it.  I could go on all day…

As for wallpapers I am such a great lover of Brian Yates papers, I can always find something that a client will adore, but again like Barker and Stonehouse it’s quite easy when they have such a great range.  There are some great fabrics out there, I especially like working with textures, silks, metallics and sheers; anything that’s a little bit different and timeless.

Describe a typical working day:

There isn’t a typical day in my job, every day is different.  One day you could be helping a client redecorate an awkward shaped sitting room, and the next you could be working on a new build project helping to create a fabulous home from plan.

What do you love about your job?

I love just about everything about my job. It doesn’t feel like a job… I know that I am very lucky.  Hopefully my passion comes through in helping my clients.  I love when I have helped a client and you see the excitement and reassured look on their faces when they are placing their orders with Barker and Stonehouse.  Most product ranges, especially the bespoke ranges, can take a few weeks for delivery (when it’s right it’s worth waiting for!), so when I get a little text or email from a client weeks after I have worked with them to say ‘thanks, I love my room’, it’s just fab!

What advice would you give to somebody looking to get into the interiors industry?

For anyone wanting to become an interior designer, obviously you will need to complete a good design course so that you feel confident in the basics. I would like to hope that I am pretty good at space planning, putting the right sized piece in the right place. I feel this is one of the most crucial aspects of interior design.

I also think that what has really helped me, is that I am sympathetic to the fact that in most situations, my clients are allowing me into their personal spaces.  They have their own ideas for their home and I don’t want to crush any serious desires, however I do want to help them channel their ideas into what is the best design for their home.

What do you think will be popular in 2015?

I try not to do trends, as they can have a tendency to cost and date too quickly.  The only way I would bring in a trend would be in a child’s or teen’s room, or if that was specifically what the client wanted.

I think good styling should be timeless.  I like to mix textures of fabrics, wallpapers, colours and tones of colour.  I like to mix subtle sophisticated furniture with eye catching lighting and a statement piece of furniture.  All pieces should be the right size for the the right space, all complimenting, not overpowering each other.

Predicting trend by home magazines, it sounds like a natural theme may be quite popular in 2015 with slouchy linen sofas and soft linen bedding.  As for popular colours, zesty mustard seems to be a favourite with hues of blues and purples are in the mix.

Should a customer wish to use the Barker and Stonehouse consultation service,  an initial consultation fee of £100 is paid up front and later refunded if they place an order of £1500 or more.   To book an Interior Design consultation with Trish you can contact Jill Marriot on 0191 2616969.