Together with his wife, Charlotte, Angus Buchanan runs Buchanan Studio, one of London’s most exciting creative design studios. So it’s no surprise that they have managed to put their creative stamp onto the home they’re renting. By Jessica Jonzen
BUCHANAN STUDIO CO-FOUNDER ANGUS BUCHANAN.IMAGE: BUCHANAN STUDIO
Where do you live and why?
I live in North West London with my wife, Charlotte, and our two children – Riva who is four and two-year-old Wylder. We are currently renovating our new home and so we’ve been living in a rental house for the past couple of years, which is nice and close to our studio in Ladbroke Grove.
How would you describe your home?
It’s a Victorian house with amazing proportions and wonderful period features like cornicing and huge sash windows, so its ‘bones’ are very beautiful. But being a rental, the fixtures and fittings are practical rather than aesthetically what we would choose to have ourselves.
What was the first thing you did to your home when you moved in?
We are lucky to have an amazing garden, and our old house didn’t have one so that was what we were most excited about for the children. The very first thing we did before we’d even unpacked all the boxes was build a wooden Wendy house in the garden with our daughter.
ANGUS AND CHARLOTTE BUCHANAN USED ART AND PLENTY OF RUGS AND FURNITURE TO PUT THEIR CREATIVE STAMP ON THEIR RENTED HOME. IMAGES: BUCHANAN STUDIO
How have you put your creative stamp on your home with it being a rental?
We have covered the floors in rugs and the walls in art. We invested in some key furniture pieces to fill the space and we’ve used every available surface to display the things we own which helps it to feel like ours.
Has your background in fashion and set design influenced your approach to interiors?
For me the only difference is that my interiors tend to be permanent whereas my event and set design creations are temporary. However, if you break it down to the crux of it, they all have the same intention – to elicit emotion, stir reactions in people, and create a meaningful space for people to interact with.
What was your childhood home like?
I grew up in an incredibly creative home in Oxfordshire. My mother, Brigette, started her career at Vogue in the early 80’s where she was a stylist for many years before co-founding lifestyle brand Cabbages & Roses, and my father was part of the founding team at Fired Earth. They then teamed up to start Odd Limited, selling incredible garden furniture and lots of other lifestyle products. So as you would expect, our home was an extremely colourful and brilliantly eccentric place.
The house is in the middle of a wood so there was also an incredible garden to explore and we had a real emphasis on living outside as much as inside. My favourite part of the house was the verandah which had a dining table and two huge sofas and was always covered in blankets, cushions and rugs no matter what time of year. I think we even have Christmas lunch out there once.
(TOP) PLANTS, COLLECTIONS OF VASES AND GLASSWARE AND A TABLE LAMP ADD PERSONALITY TO THEIR ANGUS AND CHARLOTTE’S KITCHEN. (BOTTOM) ANGUS AND CHARLOTTE BUCHANAN. IMAGES: BUCHANAN STUDIO
What’s on your bedside table?
Charlotte is obsessed with scented candles – they are everywhere! So there is usually one on my bedside table as well as some dried flowers, several books I am trying to find the time to read, and often something weird my daughter has made for me at school.
If the objects in your home could talk, which would have the best story to tell?
I love antique and vintage pieces so we have quite a few things which would have amazing tales to tell, but I’m going to go with a large antique model pond boat that Charlotte gave me. With it having been through phases of being used by children on lakes and ponds, and then restored and renovated to be a beautiful ornament as it is today through periods of ownership by multiple different families, I bet it would have a good autobiography to write.
Do you have a domestic guilty secret or pet hate?
I’m terrible for hoarding – I find it really difficult to throw things away – but you would never know if you saw our house because I am incredibly good at stacking huge amounts of things away into small cupboards!
ANGUS AND CHARLOTTE’S BEDROOM, WHERE SCENTED CANDLES AND DRIED FLOWERS ARE ALWAYS TO BE FOUND ON THE BEDSIDE TABLE. IMAGES: BUCHANAN STUDIO
What are some of the most memorable things which have happened in your home?
Almost all of our time spent in this house has been during the pandemic, which is strange because it means nobody we know has been here – it has just purely been inhabited by our family. Because we are only here temporarily, and because there’s no-one else to consider, we have created our own world and the children have spread their things out to fill the entire house. So we have dens filled with teddies, Lego towers, dinosaur parks, and fairy tea parties in practically every room. We have also had a picnic in every single room of the house to try and create some variety during lockdown mealtimes.
Has the pandemic affected the way you feel about your home?
The pandemic has just re-emphasised to me what I knew already: home is everything. But I have so missed filling it with people.
What makes your house a home?
For me it’s a fireplace – there is nothing more comforting than an open log fire, in my opinion. At our new house we have even restored the fires in our bedroom and bathroom for that ultimate luxury of a fire roaring next to a freestanding bath. And music, music always makes a house a home.
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