SEEING THE BEAUTY
With Luke Edward Hall
Luke Edward Hall is one of those people who just seems to have been born with good taste, having studied menswear design at Central Saint Martin’s. Luke went on to co-run and curate an eclectic and successful online antiques store. With his love of Fabrics and furniture finely tuned he went of to assist one of London’s top interior designers and in 2015 started his own studio. His work mixes matisse like painting skills, with the luxury materials of turn of the century British aristocracy. This, all rolled up into an unassuming and charming English gent.
What most inspires you about London? As your work is so governed by patterns and architecture do you think you look at it differently?
The architecture of the city is certainly very inspiring and I notice lots of details that end upinforming my work in one way or another. Floor tiles become fabric patterns, an architectural detail might pop up in a drawing. I love walking around Bloomsbury, one of my favourite areas in the city, because it’s streets are very handsome but also because I’m a big fan of the Bloomsbury Group – it’s fun walking the streets and imagining its members doing the same a hundred years ago…
Why do you think London has a unique magic?
I think because it’s a very big city, full of contrasts. If I’m at home over a weekend, I love that I can spend a Saturday afternoon window shopping for grand antiques in the west and and on a Sunday morning, picking up plants and flowers flowers on Columbia Road in the east. All of the city’s areas feel so very different, which makes it constantly exciting to live here.
What would you advise a first time visitor to London?
I’d suggest checking out some of our brilliant museums – at the top of my list is the small but
perfectly formed Sir John’s Soane’s Museum, which has a fantastic selection of paintings,
drawings and antiquities, including an ancient Egyptian sarcophagus.
It’s seen as somewhere that is very reserved when it comes to making friends? What is your take on that?
I certainly found the city to be pretty intimidating when I first moved here as a teenager! But you
find your people. London is full of lovely, creative, inspiring and engaging individuals.
Where do you go if you feel sad in the city?
Nature always cheers me up, so I might head to Hampstead Heath.
Where do you go in your city at night?
These days it’s restaurants, usually, or friend’s houses. I do think that the city is missing good, exciting places for me and my friends to go to at night.
What would you personally choose to entertain yourself in the city on a rainy afternoon?
I’d get lost in the British Museum or V&A.
Where would you take a visitor for a cocktail?
The Chiltern Firehouse has a very good-looking bar.
What is the place you could eat at every day?
My favourite restaurant in the city is The River Café, but we go only twice a year so it remains a treat. I also love Quo Vadis (especially for its puddings) and Barrafina for tapas.
What is your favorite time of day in the City?
Late afternoon in summer, when the light is golden.
Tell me about a place where you should watch a Sunset or a Sunrise from in your city?
Somewhere high I should imagine, but I don’t think London looks that interesting from high places. For me it’s more about the beautiful streets.
What’s the most meaningful thing you bought back during your travels? How is it part of your life at home?
I always bring back ceramics from places I’ve visited. I have a small ceramic anchovy from the Amalfi Coast that I adore… We’ve got lots of things – plates, bowls, jugs. It’s nice using these bits and pieces every day – they’re reminders of times well spent
Do you call the city you live in home? Or is just a place where you are currently resting your hat?
It’s home, for sure. I can imagine living in the countryside in the future but I imagine I’ll always have a base in the city.
Tell me 3 places that make a trip to London better for someone who has never been before?
I’d suggest breakfast at The Wolseley, shopping at Daunt Books in Marylebone and dinner at Brunswick House, which is half restaurant half salvage yard and totally fantastic. We’d pay a visit to my local vegetable shop too, which is always full of treasures.
Where will your next escape be to?
Porto and the Douro Valley. I can’t wait! One thing that you wish you could change about London? That it was more affordable for people to live in…
Tell me about what the next 6 months are looking for you, life, love, work and adventures?
I’ll be working on several drawing projects and collaborations leading up to the autumn. We’ll be travelling a bit too – Italy in June and again in August. I’ll be going to the North Devon coast with my family in July, as I’ve been doing every year since I was born. Maybe Greece in September – I haven’t been to Greece yet and I’m desperate to explore…
Your favourite travel quote?
“Never go on trips with anyone you do not love.” – Ernest Hemingway
SUGGESTIONS FROM THE ARTICLE:
Grand antiques notting hill west london
Flower market on Columbia Road in the east london
The Chiltern Firehouse / www.chilternfirehouse.com