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September 2019 / Homes & Interiors / by Ali Howard

At home with: Isabella Townsley

With its inviting mix of soft hues and plush textures, Isabella Townsley’s west London apartment is a masterclass in modern luxury. And the devil’s in the detail – curated and uncluttered, every object is perfectly placed.

Ornamenting her Little Venice property came naturally for Isabella Townsley – a woman who knows a thing or two about accessorising. The raised ground floor apartment is expertly finished with the prettiest house jewels, from the amber vases that echo the gold frames of the contemporary artworks, to the collection of crystals that offer eye-catching pastel coloured pops in the bathroom. “I have definitely fallen for the crystal craze!” She says. “Candles are a must, too. I have a lot scattered around the flat. And I always have fresh flowers and house plants. They bring the space to life and I find caring for them to be therapeutic.” For the jewellery designer, the smallest accessories can have the biggest impact, and it’s entirely evident that here, every object, and every placement, has been thoroughly thought through – right down to the matching pencils and notepads on the bedside tables.

Isabella Townsley

The period flat is an elegant affair with a modern luxury aesthetic that puts comfort at the fore. A sprawling dusky pink corner sofa from George Smith is adorned with scatter cushions in the double figures, while a large antique buttoned ottoman, upholstered in pale grey, proudly takes centre stage. But none of this would be possible without the apartment’s glorious Victorian scale: huge sash windows are met with grand panelled walls and cornicing. “The flat holds very high ceilings which have a plaster coving design lifted straight from the temples of ancient Rome,” enthuses Isabella. “I definitely consider myself a bit of an old soul, so to have a sense of history in my home is a lovely thing.”

Cosy textures and gentle shades are themes that run throughout the property: Isabella’s bedroom is finished with tactile touches of velvet in the lampshades and the soft cream headboard. Soft grey carpets are suitably plush underfoot while heavy satin curtains offer a lustrous sheen. But there’s high fashion drama, too: the black and white diamond patterned tiles in the bathroom, and the contemporary black marble dining table, cleverly offset the pretty. “I used mostly pale pinks and whites for the living room,” Isabella explains, “and then as you head into the dining area, it becomes much darker, with the dining room table held up by a very modern stand, giving the table top all the attention it needs!”

Isabella could wax lyrical about her favourite interiors brands. Aside from George Smith (she also owns a sumptuous pink armchair from the esteemed furniture makers), she lists OKA as a go-to: “It’s somewhere I’ve found myself returning to quite often, mainly for their fake flowers, which are divine!” And Fornasetti: “I’ve been collecting their wall plates for a while and hope to have enough to hang them all up soon. I also have a coffee table with the interpretation of Lina Cavalieri’s face surrounded by pastel hydrangeas,” she says. “Fornasetti’s pieces always feel like works of art in the home.”

Isabella Townsley

The apartment is largely open-plan, awarding it a light and spacious feel. But with Isabella’s choice of furnishings, and with clever zoning, it is also utterly homely. “I recently bought a House of Hackney floor lamp paired with a printed fringed shade,” she says. “I feel like it creates a space, especially in the evening. You can be on the sofa and be in your own space, regardless of others being in it.” But as far as Isabella’s favourite room goes, her luxurious walk-in wardrobe, which offers so much more than a conventional dressing room, wins hands down. “There’s a window looking out into the gardens below and I find it very peaceful in there. It’s where I put outfits together, style jewellery with clothes, and do most of my photography using different fabrics with the jewellery. Having such an open space to put everything on display allows me to really visualise and be the most creative I can be!”

isabellatownsley.com