Spanish born jeweller Inés Nieto wanted to blow some Mediterranean warmth into her London home so chose colour combinations accordingly. Brought up by the sea in southern Spain she aimed to capture the architecture of the pueblos blancos, turquoise ocean and sand of Andalusia. However she had a job convincing her husband Max that certain shades would work together. “He struggled to get his head round the colour scheme,” Inés says.
The prospect of aqua blue juxtaposed alongside muted earthy tones on the stairs and peachy terracotta in the kitchen with deep marine blue highlights was met with uncertainty. “I get strong ideas of how something will look and can visualise it very clearly in my head but it’s difficult to explain until the vision materialises,” says the mother of two. In the end Max totally loved and appreciated the outcome of her internal mood board.
“Just like the process with my jewellery – I imagine the structure, aesthetics and look of a piece but until it’s created it’s hard to describe what I am seeing in my mind’s eye,” Inés adds. The same love of geometrical shapes and cubist silhouettes of her beloved Spanish homeland are reflected in her beautiful signature designs, using rare stones such as white casholong and paraiba tourmaline. Fresh bold hues and geometric inspiration also informed her choice of fabrics in her home.
Inés was first introduced to Sue Whimster over a decade ago by her mother-in-law who recommended the company make the curtains for her new baby daughter Gigi’s bedroom. Cut to 2022 when Inés and Max decided to renovate the interior of their house, Sue was called back to help with the process of picking fabrics, choosing window coverings and upholstery.
“At the time, the house was a building site so we looked at swatches out of the boot of my car,” says Sue. “It’s essential to make decisions before construction work is finished as there are many factors to consider – colour, measurements, privacy etc. There’s a lot to get right.” Having an experienced professional curtain-maker involved helped Inés avoid potential expensive mistakes.
This time Sue was asked to provide bespoke blinds and curtains for all the rooms in the 4-storey house including a rust red valance and elaborate upholstered headboard in the couple’s bedroom, squab seat cushions in the kitchen and furniture such as an antique bench and heirloom armchair. Sticking to the Mediterranean and geometric theme, Sue guided the process and was able to advise which materials would work best in each room and all the important details, from the curtain pleats and breaks to the covered larth tracks in the children’s bedrooms that help conceal outside light.
Inés was particularly drawn to the striking graphic designs of American celebrity lifestyle/interior designer Kelly Wearstler whose prints feature in the main rooms, interspersed with designs by Jane Churchill, Colefax & Fowler and Lee Jofa. The overall result is a welcoming and colourful family home exuding chic comfort and international flair.