My haven, Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen: The Changing Rooms star and interior designer, 56, in the bedroom of his Cotswolds manor house
- Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, 56, shares items of significance in his bedroom
- Interior designer treasures a picture of his daughters at his Cotswolds home
- The TV star also cherishes the family’s kitten Higgins, ‘who is an absolute joy’
Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen (pictured), 56, shares items of significance in his bedroom
1. Off the wall
I trained as a fine artist and I’ve started painting again, lots of peacocks, flamingos and other exotic birds like these. My childhood home had loads of Oriental ceramics in it because my grandfather and uncles were sea captains and brought things back from the Far East. The wallcovering is one of mine, based on drawings I did of idealised landscapes – it’s orange because that’s my wife Jackie’s favourite colour.
Laurence said: ‘I trained as a fine artist and I’ve started painting again, lots of peacocks, flamingos and other exotic birds like these (pictured)’
2. Owl play
Jackie and I went on honeymoon to Venice 32 years ago and we return often. We went a couple of years ago with the whole family, including my grandson Albion. It was my birthday and he wanted to buy me something, so he got me this marble-ised paper owl from a gorgeous paper shop. I’m incredibly fond of it and take it with me on trips – I like to send him pictures of it in hotels.
3. Swing out sisters
I love this picture of our two girls Cecile and Hermione on a swing in the garden which was taken the year we moved here from London in 2007. Sadly the yew tree is no more, but I think there’s a real sense of fairy enchantment to the photo, look closely and it looks like there are faces in the bark. Both girls, in their 20s now, are hugely embarrassed by it, but I treasure it and think they look so carefree.
4. Design deity
I’m a great fan of the set designer, stylist and interior designer Tony Duquette who devised the expression ‘more is more’, which is something of a mantra for me. He was a huge personality in the world of Hollywood Regency design, one of my favourite periods. He really pioneered the fabulous devil-may-care eclecticism of 50s and 60s Hollywood decorating, when he would throw everything at it including the kitchen sink. I love the Oom-Pah-Pah exuberance and sexiness of his designs.
‘There’s a wonderful old cafe in St Mark’s Square in Venice called Caffe Florian. They sell room sprays, including this one called The Room Of The Important Men,’ said the TV star
5. Let us spray
There’s a wonderful old cafe in St Mark’s Square in Venice called Caffe Florian. They sell room sprays, including this one called The Room Of The Important Men which I’ve used as a fragrance for about 15 years. It gives me huge pleasure when people say I smell nice and I’m literally wearing a room spray, it’s only one step up from Shake ’n’ Vac. I’m the 17th-century Venetian equivalent of wearing Glade. It’s quite strong, so I’m always aware of getting on a plane and people going, ’Oh, smells like a tart’s boudoir!’
6. Fabulous feline
Our kitten Higgins is an absolute joy, and I have to compliment my daughter Hermione on choosing the right shade of kitten for the bedroom, which is obviously absolutely crucial! We have other animals, including spaniels and chickens, and you tend to think cats can be frightfully independent and a bit snooty, but Higgins is very much a team player. He adores this feathery lion tickling stick with a bell on the end, and I’m constantly amazed that he comes running when I jiggle it. He’s the ginger kitten equivalent of a rugger bugger I think.
Watch the series finale of Changing Rooms, Wednesday, 8pm, Channel 4. Laurence’s wallpapers are available at Brewers and wallpaperdirect.com