I'm not a beach person; not a beachwear person, anyway. I like walking on beaches, picking up bits of coral and building the occasional sand-sofa with my kids, but always in the same frayed cargo shorts and long sleeved shirt. For those who want a bit more style in their holiday wardrobe, I teamed up with Orlebar Brown to bring some classic David Hicks geometrics to the beach. In the words of the inimitable Konstantin Kakanias, the brilliant creator of fashion icon Mrs Tependris: Geometry, the New Sexy!
To be asked to decorate a room in Sir William Chambers' masterwork, Somerset House, was hugely exciting, even if it would only be there for ten days in March. Wool House had seven 'designer rooms' using only wool to promote the use of this wonderful natural fibre in a world swathed in plastics. My Study was inspired by an imaginary client, one of the classic English gents of the civil service who worked in these rooms for so many years, with walls of sober, pin-checked grey flannel like their business suits, and sudden flashes of bright pinks and reds like their braces, socks and handkerchiefs suggesting some hidden flamboyance. He'd left the room for a moment, leaving Chambers' drawings for the building on his red lacquered desk. His Grayson Perry prints and trompe l'oeil Collectors Cabinet topped by gilded flames showed a certain imagination, his 'thing' for obelisks a craving for the monumental...
I just went out to shut the chickens in for the night and couldn't resist this image of my cosy, warm library glowing in the snow. The chickens are named after Italian Renaissance ladies, since their run is screened by a silhouette city inspired by the one Mantegna painted for Barbara Brandenburg (she's on the left, below, trudging home through the snow with Bianca Riario.)
You can see examples of my furniture in the various projects under 'Interiors' above; but to see the collection, click here to see the Ashley Hicks Furniture website.
My father's work has a vibrancy and timelessness that never ceases to amaze me. When hip, young handbag company Tila March got in touch from Paris, wanting to use some prints on Tila March + David Hicks bags, I was delighted, partly because they are so hip and young, and it's great that my father's designs of 40 years ago fit them so well, but also because it means that I can give my daughters, sisters and mother some of the cool, fun, fresh and practical results. I love what Tamara Taichman has done with the prints, don't you?