With its jewel-like colours, luxe materials and eclectic collection of art, this north London home is the right combination of elegance and fun. Louisa McGillicuddy reports
ou can make a house look beautiful, but can you throw a party in it and keep it looking perfect? That was the key for Paul Price and Fletcher Cowan when it came to turning their house in Islington, north London, into a home. The couple, who met on a blind date three years ago, have thrown some big bashes during the renovation. “We’ve had 300 people in here before,” says Cowan, a comedy writer and presenter. “Now the house is finished, we’ll probably keep it to 50 max.”
Price, an American from Washington state who works in fashion, enlisted the help of the interior designer Peter Mikic to convert the three-storey townhouse into a bright collection of pop culture. Think David Hockney above the bath, Warhol Polaroids of Diana Vreeland in the hall and an original Jeff Koons puppy in the living room. Art is a common interest: Cowan, a Central St Martins graduate, recalls seeing the work of his good friend Alex Prager hanging in Price’s house when they first met.
For the new collector, Cowan advises buying from artists at the start of their careers, at places such as the Royal Drawing School. For interiors, both men are fans of the Decorative Antiques & Textiles Fair in Battersea Park, the antiques shops scattered along Church Street, Marylebone, and Decorativecollective.com.
And if you can focus on doing up only one room? Make it the kitchen. “It’s the heart of the home,” says Price. “Everyone always ends up talking around the kitchen table after a great night.”
The Perspex light in the hallway is by the Danish designer Vibeke Fonnesberg Schmidt