Primrose Hill in North London is one of the most sought-out areas of the city and the kind of place you’ll find us wandering aimlessly on a Saturday afternoon, dreaming of homes and lifestyles that are far beyond our means – but are nice to look at.
It’s also the home of one of the most-loved interiors boutiques in London. Cave Interiors, as well as being a reputable luxury residential interior design studio, is a interiors and gifts boutique in Primrose Hill that supports vintage, bespoke and British design.
The operation is brainchild of interior designer Georgina Cave, who manages her interior design business (with her team of two) from a studio space that occupies the back half of her Cave Interiors boutique shop at 29 Princess Road, Primrose Hill.
In our usual Forward Features style, we caught up with Georgina and asked her our famous five questions to give you an insight into her life and business…
Tell us about the first place you called “home” and how did you make it your own?
This would have to be a 4-bedroom house that my husband and I bought when I was pregnant with our second child. Although our first flat was lovely, this was a real family home and I loved it. Being very young we were on a very tight budget, so we had to make do with what we had. In the kitchen in particular I had the doors to the units changed and gave them a distressed paint effect finish myself. I had old lab tops fitted which I sourced from Lassco and we added encaustic tiles as the splash backs. All very ahead of its time if you consider this was the mid-nineties, but nonetheless earthy and warm which is exactly how I would describe that home.
You have designed homes in the most sought-after areas in London and around the world. What’s your calling card that can be seen in any of your designs?
I don’t have a particular style as it’s always about creating homes to suit the clients lifestyle and personality, not my own. However, I like to think that whilst we create homes that are stylish and incorporate current trends, they are in fact timeless and crucially places our clients can call home in terms of both function and form.
“I like to think that whilst we create homes that are stylish and incorporate current trends, they are in fact timeless”
Looking back at your extensive and eclectic portfolio, are there any project that sticks in your mind as being a particular challenge or success and why?
Gosh that’s a hard one as most projects bring their challenges and successes. However, I would have to say that the complete renovation of Grove House in Hampton has to be our biggest challenge & success. This three storey Grade II* listed house with full length basement and extensions was horribly carved up in the 60s and used as offices until half way through our restoration works. As a development project, the brief was to return it to its former glory as a single family dwelling, restoring all its original features as well as adding all the mod cons to bring it into the 21st Century.
We brought in many of our specialist suppliers whose skills & expertise were paramount to the task. Our works included space planning all the internal layouts, restoring & adding back in original features, sourcing the materials, fixtures & fittings, designing the kitchen, bathrooms & all the joinery as well as overseeing all the works. The restoration by specialist conservatories, of the wonderfully ornate “Music Room” and our involvement in a few key areas of this space was particular exciting. The results speak for themselves and I like to think are testament that we rose to the challenge and made it a success in terms of fulfilling the brief.
You host a range of curated pieces in your boutique and we are definitely in love with some of the vintage finds – do you have a favourite?
I source all the pieces we show including the vintage finds so understandably I love them all. Given the vintage pieces are obviously one offs they can be particularly hard to part with. There is a truly stunning 1950s light that hangs over the worktable in our studio at the back of the shop. Its never been for sale and despite numerous requests, I simply can’t part with it.
As we all know, interior designers can anticipate trends before they happen – what have you seen coming through that will be huge in 2016 or is there a particular trend you wish would go away?
We’re not about what’s on trend but more about the individual and the architecture. However, interiors like fashion is cyclical, so you see things come around time and again. Predicting trends can be hard, as in truth they often stem from projects that are seen in the press. Our Queen’s Park project was featured heavily in the book Casual Living by Judith Wilson . Soon this ‘antique-industrial’ scheme, with new or antique encaustic tiles, reclaimed floors and aged zinc worktops became all the rage and in truth I don’t see it going anywhere for some time. Of course I’m not claiming it as solely led by us, but this is how trends are born. We’re currently completing a wonderful new build house in Highgate where every feature has been designed bespoke. It will be interesting to see whether certain aspects of those designs kick off a new trend.
If you want to see more from Cave Interiors, visit them online or head to the boutique on Primrose Hill. You’ll find them a stone’s throw from CP Hart, Melrose & Morgan and The Lansdowne at the artisanal end of Primrose Hill – and we’ll hedge a bet you can get a nice lunch close to here too…
David & Mark x