Case Study: Designer Pearl Lowe
By Victoria Smith
Apr 26, 2022
When it comes to mastering the art of beautifully soft, eclectic interiors, fashion and textiles designer Pearl Lowe has it nailed. We’ve been fans of her signature romantic schemes for a long time, and so couldn’t be more thrilled to see our tiles gracing the pages of her new interior design book, Faded Glamour by the Sea.
To mark the book’s recent launch, we caught up with Pearl to find out more about life in her new coastal home, her interiors inspiration, and how Bert & May first caught her eye…
Tell us about your latest book, Faded Glamour by the Sea…
During lockdown my husband Danny and I fulfilled a lifelong dream of purchasing a little place by the sea. It was the perfect opportunity to create a follow up to Faded Glamour that wasn't your generic coastal home book. No ticking in sight! We have photographed all sorts of places, including a railway carriage, a beach hut, and a house with a cave, where Turner used to paint!
Your new home belonged to an artist, were there any stand-out pieces you were inspired by and couldn't bear to change?
The house was built in the 1940s by an artist who worked with shells. When we purchased it, the front of the property still had her shell installation which we wanted to keep, but unfortunately during the storms in February, they have all come down. We still have all her lovely animals made of shells in the garden though.
What makes living by the sea so special?
There is something so tranquil about the sea. I love nothing more than getting up super early and walking my two dogs to the beach. They love it so much! When it's hot, we take a picnic, blankets and a book and sit there all day. It's heaven!
How would you describe your personal style? Have you always had a passion for vintage?
I first got into vintage when I was 14 years old. There was a shop in Covent Garden called Flip and I would buy my 501 Levi jean shorts there. I used to hide my bags from my mum, who thought it was disgusting that I wore someone else’s clothes. She once threw a beautiful faux fur collared leather coat in the bin; I was so upset. Once I moved out of her house, I was able to buy antique textiles and furniture for my own place and a lot of the pieces I bought I still have. I am such a hoarder!
What’s your advice for anyone who wants to use vintage?
Don’t buy things you don’t like just because you need to fill a space. You have to be patient when you’re decorating using vintage pieces. They will come. You might have to live empty for a while until they do.
Your interior schemes always strike the perfect balance between decedent and lived in - what’s the secret to achieving this look?
I think the key is to only buy things that you love. If you don’t have a place for them, you will find one. And be brave when mixing colours and textures. There are no rules when it comes to decorating - if you get something wrong, correct it. I have made so many mistakes and I’m still making them. If something jars at me, then it has to go.
You’ve used several Bert & May tiles in your new seaside home - why were they the perfect fit?
I love Bert & May tiles, the patterns and textures fit in perfectly with my aesthetic. They are cheery and stylish at the same time.
What first led you to use Bert & May?
I first saw the Bert & May star tiles in a shower room at Babington House and it was love at first sight. I ran down to reception and asked who made them and that’s how my love affair with the brand began.
Whose interior style do you really admire?
I love Rachel Ashwell’s pretty style. She art directed the book and I love watching her in action, as she throws everything together so effortlessly. I love Helena Christensen too. I am so pleased her beautiful home made it into the book. Every time she posts a picture of one of her houses it makes me want to change everything in my own. Her taste reminds me of Charleston house, effortless and cool. I also love Lorraine Kirk - we wanted to photograph her Miami house, but due to all the covid restrictions, it was impossible, which was a shame.
And where are your go-to spots for interior inspiration?
I love Lark vintage in Frome, Old Albion in Bridport, Hoof in Romney Marsh and Shepton Mallet Flea Market.
What’s next - any more projects in the pipeline that you can share…?
I am just about to release my new swimwear collection, I have a very exciting collaboration launching in May, and a brand-new bespoke wallpaper collection launching on my website soon…
Pearl’s latest book, Faded Glamour by the Sea, is out now, priced £25. Follow Pearl on Instagram - @pearllowe or head to pearllowe.co.uk for more information on her launches, projects and products. PIC CREDIT: Dave Watts Photography
GET THE LOOK
Pearl’s seaside home features our Quinta Marron, Blue Bolonia and Brighton Stone Herringbone tiles.