Minford Shop: The Summer Edit

Hi JUNE. Hi Summer. We’ve missed you. Hi long nights sat on a cotton beach mat in the garden. Hi enamel plates to eat picnics off. Hi big floppy hat and bikini. I am in the mood for some good old sun now and subsequently the Minford shop is all prepped. As per usual, shop my edit of the best interiors selection and fashion for you and your minis.

#FASHCHAT It's All White

An all white outfit is my summer uniform. Without fail, I always gravitate towards a head-to-toe white look each time the mercury goes anywhere near 20 degrees…who am I kidding make that 15.
It reminds me of summers spent with the brood in Ile de Ré where each year we dip our toes in the Atlantic ocean, tangle our hair with salt and sand and sit out under the sun till our freckles come out.
This year, the white-out comes courtesy of & Other Stories. I found the perfect length and cut skirt (i.e. not a mini, mini skirt but not too dowdy) and matched it with a creamy knit with big sleeves.
Both of these items potentially look a bit blah online, but on, well it’s safe to say I’ll be living in these for months to come.

(Scroll down to the post below to see the skirt in action.)

Bishop Sleeve Knit . Denim Skirt


The Minford Guide To Barcelona

Over the last four days I was that person – the one we all love to hate on Instagram who’s posting pictures of the pool whilst everyone else is stuck in an office and it won’t stop raining. This week, I am making it up to you by bringing you a guide to what I got up to. I even managed to bring the sun back with me. You’re welcome. See my tips for where to stay, shop and of course eat in Barcelona!
Soho House artwork and rooftop bar

Mango dress on the balcony of Soho House

Where to Stay
Soho House Barcelona
What: You know the one, the trendy members clubs found in London, Miami, NYC, Turkey and now Barcelona. This one was brand spanking new. There’s an incredible view from the roof terrace and they had the most insane collection of lamps…really, really good lamps.
Where: Plaça del Duc de Medinaceli, 4, 08002

Margot House
What: Unmarked door with just a buzzer for entry. Nine bedroom boutique hotel with a Scandi inspired interior. Impeccably styled. It’s more like staying in a luxury apartment than a hotel. We discovered it after being tipped off about a pop up shop by twins @gimaguas. A major result.
Where: Paseo de Gracia, 46


The Little Creative Factory, Hotel Margot and Els Encants Market finds

My favourtie summer shoe right now from MangoPackaging goals courtesy of Els Encants Market

The Avant
What: This shop is at the top of the list because it was hands down THE best clothes shop I went to.   I’d never heard of the brand before and was so excited to discover their collection. An all round shopping experience. They have two stores and sell online.
Where: Carrer d’Enric Granados, 106, 08008

What: An interesting edit of brands from around the world. Fashion, shoes and accessories. Like being in a store in Soho NY or the Marias in Paris. Concrete floors and real nice changing rooms.
Where: Carrer del Rec, 65, 08003

What: A Spainish label you may already be familiar with and if not, be prepared to shop. Think pretty, sun bleached and a bit vintage, in beautiful silk and linen fabrics.
Where: Provença 268, 08008

Little Creative Factory
What: This exquisite boutique has just won Milk Magazine’s Best SS17 Kids Fashion Collection. The shop is as beautiful as the clothes. We’re talking major attention to detail here.
Where: Carrer Rec, 42, 08003

La Variété
What: Such a great little interiors shop opposite Caravelle. Lots of baskets and bamboo lights, linen and vases.
Where: Carrer del Pintor Fortuny, 30, 08001

What: It’s a chocolate kitchen and artisanal bakery. Say. No. More.
Where: Carme, 3, 08001

Sucursal Aceitera‘s interior

My pigeon friend

Eating & Drinking
The Boca Grande
What: I only have good things to say about this place. When I say I’m seriously considering (dreaming) of having my 40th b’day here you’ll start to get the idea. It’s a touch heavy on the credit card but so worth it. It has the best loo I’ve ever been in complete with a DJ booth FFS. Oh and make sure you take your water bottle home – brown ribbed glass with a vintage label and stopper. It nearly took me over my baggage weight restriction but it was so worth it.
Where: Passatge de la Conceptcio, 12, 08003

Bar Brutal
What: Cool taverna style restaurant and bar serving seriously good food and natural wine. Eccentric interior. Even better playlist.
Where: Carrer Princesa, 14

What: Not exactly a traditional Barcelona haunt, it does feel like a Hoxton import (there’s a high beard ratio), but who can resist a good floor tile. They do an amazing brunch.
Where: Carrer del Pintor Fortuny, 31, 08001

Sucursal Aceitera
What: Another restaurant, another beautiful interior. Great service and delicious tapas.
Where: Comte Borrell, 36, 08015

Photographer Kristin Perers

Once upon a time I was the girl who got paid to sit on an M&S sofa smiling like a goon. (Don’t bother Googling it – you won’t find me – PHEW!). This was one of the giddy heights of my modelling career, that and becoming the face of Müller Light yoghurt. A bit of modelling allowed me to do work experience on magazines for free and assist the top interior stylists in the industry.

One day I found myself sitting in a bath full of bubbles artfully styled by Kristin Perers.  From my vantage point I observed how she could make even a dodgy high street bathroom set look amazing. She had the best southern drawl, drove a vintage Mercedes and could style like no one else. I knew I just had to assist her.

Fast forward 16+ years and now I’m a stylist and she’s a photographer for the likes of Vogue, House & Garden and Sunday Times Style.  She also finds time to run styling workshops from her Columbia Road studio, write a blog championing women over 50 and (after doing up the vicarage that she shares with her husband), rennovate a house in Suffolk.

Talk to me about your interesting career. You actually first started out in fashion first?

I grew up in small town Florida where I made up for the limited horizons by developing a very rich fantasy life. As a young girl I also learned to sew and I would design and assemble the most outrageous getups, my own take on the things I saw in my mother’s copy of Glamour or Vogue. It was all sort of a dress rehearsal for that ‘someday’ when I knew I would be out of there and I would be living a life as a grown-up.

What then prompted the move into interior styling?
As soon as I could I moved to NYC where I studied fashion design and went on to work as a designer. When I got married I moved with him back to London although to begin with I continued the transatlantic commute. When we started a family my focus changed. At the time we had we also moved into a house that needed a lot of attention and I kept a scrapbook of the renovation and this became the basis of my proposal for my first book the Seasonal Home.

What is/was your niche or particular style in that world?
My motto is “Make it yourself”! I love homemade, handmade and ingenious (i.e. cheap) ways of solving problems.

What were some of your favourite styling jobs?
Working with Sarah Maingot and Jenny Zarins as a stylist for Toast certainly took me to some far flung corners of the globe in Argentina, Chile, Greece, Sri Lanka and working on the catalogue I learned so much about improvising with what you found on location.

How did your fashion and interior styling roots influence your home now?
From a technical point of view I learned the importance of keeping a neutral base that can shift as the light and environment changes. That way it’s all about layering the textures & the colour palette.

Decorating a working vicarage is like doing up a rental property, you can’t totally gut the place. How did you go about personalising the house?
Ah! Good question. I found the vicarage a fascinating challenge in that it’s not yours and you don’t know how long your going to be there. It is also a hybrid between a public and private building. This made me think in a more careful way about which aspects of the house it would be worth upgrading and which could be adapted.

Life must be full of entertainment at your home. Tell us how you like to decorate your table?
I like to decorate it easily and quickly. I have piles of washed linen in soft colours that I start with (I stopped ironing years ago and love the natural texture when they are hung dry), beeswax candles (the smell is so lovely and wont overtake what you are serving), cuttings from the garden (I’ve started a ‘spring walk’ to supply the church with posies). China is one of the things I’ve been able to bring over from America, my Grandmother’s Spode, plate by plate its come back to England, mixed with some pieces from my-mother-in-law.

Shooting ‘Round to Ours’ by Jackson & Levine (Supper club creators Laura Jackson and Alice Levine’s new cookbook come party planning bible) got me thinking about styles of entertaining, some of it was shot at the vicarage so I got the rare treat of seeing my home dressed up for someone else’s event. It’s inspired me to do more entertaining this summer.

Why did you decide to move into photography?

At first it was because I wanted to stretch myself. I’ve been freelance now for almost 30 years – since I came to the UK – and as a freelancer you are not on a natural career trajectory. Nobody is going to give you a promotion or a raise so you have to dig up your own challenges.

Tell me a little about the courses you run in your studio. Why? 
Although I love the opportunity to connect that comes with social media, I also know how we need the human contact too, how that’s part of the creative process. So a big inspiration for me is the possibility of reciprocal learning – inspiring and getting inspired. It’s good to be visible to each other and not just a twitter handle or profile picture.

As to courses, I am collaborating with Aesme Flowers on an amazing workshop in June. I think they are most talented florists  – very modern Constance Spry!

Below is Kristin’s latest interior project in Suffolk. For all the interior, food and styling inspiration you could wish for, have a scroll through Kristin’s Instagram here.

 Round to Ours is out now.


De Gournay and Aquazzura create dream shoes

It’s no secret that whilst my house is largely an ode to grey paint, I have a split style personality that is equally obsessed with the idea of one day decorating my home in the ‘English Country House’ style. Think elaborate floral wallpaper, rattan furniture, wide brimmed hats to wear whilst pruning in the greenhouse (you get the picture).

So imagine my delight upon seeing that the master of luxury wallpaper de Gournay (essential to my floral chinoisere decor dreams) has collaborated with Aquazzura on an exclusive shoe collection sold on MatchesFashion.com

Now not only can I plaster the walls in the paper, but get some of Claud Cecil Gurney genius on my feet. The specialist handpainted wallpaper designs inspired Colombian shoe designer Edgardo Osorio to create a five piece collection.

The collection is modelled by one of my favourites, Arizona Muse. I worked with her on a shoot last year and I can confirm she is delightful and VERY beautiful. Imagine my horror when she suggested joining me on a run after shooting one day. “Yeah sure Arizona, can’t think of anyone I’d like to run up a Tuscan mountain with more, if you’re sure you’ll be able to keep up with me?!!

Personally, I am taking my cues from Miss Muse and hence forth I am going to be matching my outfits to my wallpaper more often!

Above Image Arizona wears: Aquazzura for de Gournay embroidered flats

Aquazzura for de Gournay embroidered pumps

Aquazzura for de Gournay embroidered loafers

Aquazzura for de Gournay embroidered mules

Aquazzura for de Gournay embroidered slides