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Creative Conversations: Plum Guide meets Micaela Sharp

The interior and upholstery designer talks upcycling, a new furniture brand and her love of southern Spain

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Micaela Sharp

We catch up with designer, upholsterer and Interior Design Masters semi-finalist Micaela Sharp to hear about her recently launched furniture brand, why there's nothing better than a holiday in the south of Spain and more.

What aspect of interior design do you love most?

With interior design no two projects are ever the same, which I absolutely love because it challenges my creativity. It's great to explore new ways of reimagining spaces and new design influences and of course every client has differing needs and preferences. I am fond of layering patterns so I do try to encourage my clients to be brave in this area.

How would you describe the style of your own home?

My home is an eclectic mix of eras as I cherish items with history. As an upholsterer I love to upcycle items so I have a lot of vintage chairs that have been reupholstered in various patterned fabrics from stripes to florals. Despite my love of upcycling, I prefer natural wood to painted, and one of my most treasured items is a bureau I inherited which is kept in its original state with lots of patina.

Micaela reupholsters chairs in patterns from striped to floral

Micaela reupholsters chairs in patterns from striped to floral

What are your go-to upholstery fabrics and brands for quality?

My favourite fabric of all time is Liberty 'Faria Flowers' – it’s so colourful and full of joy! My go-to brands for durable upholstery fabrics are Sanderson because of their extensive range which includes my favourite heritage brand Morris & Co, and Linwood because they have brilliant colours.

Do you have a favourite furniture designer of the moment?

I would have to say my own furniture brand, Studio Janettie. Co-founded with textile designer, Charlotte Beevor and launched at Selfridges in May. Our collection strives to create the new heirloom pieces that will be cherished for generations and take pride of place in family memories.

Cushions from Micaela's new brand, Studio Janettie

Cushions from Micaela's new brand, Studio Janettie

Tell us the story behind a favourite item in your home

Before I filmed Interior Design Masters I frantically redecorated as the crew came to film at my home for a day. I made a bench for my dining area and upholstered it in cream boucle with a fluted back. It’s now my favourite spot in the house and I wonder why I didn't make it sooner!

What makes a house a home, to you?

For me home is about memories. Gradually I have collected items that remind me of moments, people and places that are important to me. A piece of art bought from a local artist, a family heirloom, a piece of ceramics from a trip abroad. Cumulatively they spark a feeling of contentment and happiness when I'm at home because I’m surrounded by great memories.

Memories, like ceramics from past travels, are what make a house a home for Micaela

Memories, like ceramics from past travels, are what make a house a home for Micaela

Where is your home away from home?

My home away from home is the south of Spain as we used to holiday there every summer growing up. I absolutely love Spanish food and culture and feel my shoulders drop the second the plane lands. There's something about prawns pil pil on the beach that just feeds the soul!

Who or what do you consider to be an arbiter of style?

Twins Daisy & Liv who curate A South London Makers Market are the epitome of style in my opinion. Their market is where I do most of my shopping at the moment as they curate the best independent makers of everything from fluffy mirrors to jewellery.

For the Plum Guide ‘Perfect Stay’ home test, we collaborate with experts from different fields — from psychologists and hospitality experts to architects and interior designers — to identify the ingredients a holiday home needs in order to deliver a perfect stay. If you were designing a test or set of criteria for the perfect holiday home, what ingredient(s) would you specify as essential for the perfect stay?

A great outdoor space with a big dining table, an outdoor fridge and loads of huge candles. There's nothing better than sitting outside late into the evening with your friends and enjoying a bottle of wine, or two.

A social outdoor area with lots of candles is what Micaela looks for in a holiday home

A social outdoor area with lots of candles is what Micaela looks for in a holiday home

You can find out more about Micaela by heading to her Instagram account or website.

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