09 Nov 2021

Why this room works

(Photo credit: Henry Bourne for Toogood)

I’ve been trying to drill down into why some rooms work for me and why some just don’t.  Obviously, this is a perfect example of the former. I cannot get this house out of my head.  Designed in the 1960s by Swiss Architect Walter Segal, it has been thoughtfully redesigned by Faye Toogood. 


Using a similar tone can look flat if there is no variation in the textures used.  In this room there is rough brick (my god, those bricks!) cosy wool, cool cotton, crinkly linen and smooth and bumpy stone accessories.  These textures, all in similar milky tones, make the room really interesting, yet utterly calm.  My eye can’t read the room in one glance and draws me in.

Perfectly Imperfect

The room looks perfect, but it doesn’t quite ‘match’.  There are three cushions, but one of them is a different size and made from a different fabric so symmetry is banished.  The cushions, pouffes and sofa cover are a little bit wrinkly.  If they were pristine, you’d imagine it wouldn’t be a room you could relax in maybe, but the wrinkles save it from becoming formal and uninviting.


A personal peeve is a skimpy rug.  Or a rug that’s just in the wrong place in a room.  This rug is huge.  A substantial rug makes no apology for being there and brings an entire room together.

The furniture all looks like the right size for the room.  There has been enough space left to navigate around the furniture, but no space wasted.  Even the wall hanging is confident in its size, not too fiddly. 

Patricia. x


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