Cool new interiors destination
Want new statement lighting for your kitchen? Have an awkward sized window and need some bespoke curtains made? Fancy getting your nails done and snaffling a tasty bite to eat in a trendy café while you’re at it? Then you need to hot foot it over to Brasted, just outside Sevenoaks. And go on, tell you what, I’ll even throw in free parking.
Much of the new buzz around Brasted has been generated by luxury lighting giants Holloways of Ludlow deciding to open their first interiors store in the village, called Holloways of Ludlow Home. It’s their first dedicated interiors shop and the first of their stores to open outside of London – unveiled at the end of last year to mark the store’s 30th anniversary celebrations.
This is the oldest house on the high street (dates back to 1480 for those of you who are counting) with loads of original features that sit perfectly with the sympathetic re-design. Head Buyer, Michelle Alger, who lives in the village and grew up in Sevenoaks is from very credible retail background including senior buying roles at Paul Smith, Liberty, Heal’s and The White Company. Here she is, below.
Her impeccable taste is evident everywhere and she’s hand-picked every item. This throw and cushion, below, is by Stockholm designer, Simon Key Bertman and Michelle is the only supplier in the UK (cushion £65, throw from £95). I am this close to snapping up this multi-coloured, sofa-revitalizing throw…
The emphasis here is on all things natural – the look is fresh and clean with a splash of colour. Scandi is cool, we know that. But what Michelle has done is mix in Scandi with sheepskin rugs from Devon and luxurious hand creams from the US. Prices are pretty good too – table linens start from £6, cushions from £35 and throws from £69. The new table display, below, is a necessary nod to Valentine’s Day, but done with characteristic style it still manages to look effortlessly cool.
Maybe, like me, you’ve driven through Brasted and thought ‘Oo, that looks interesting,’ but sped out the other side before stopping to investigate. Well I can highly recommend satisfying your curiosity. Because when you’re finished admiring all the wonderfully fresh tableware in Holloways of Ludlow Home it’s well worth tottering along the rest of the high street. For a start, right next door is a brand spanking new beauticians that has just opened up, so it would be rude not to pop in and say hello. And did I mention there’s a sister hairdressing salon on the opposite side of the road?
There’s also a decent antiques shop and I popped my nose into Coach House Interiors and looked through their fabrics for children’s curtains, which were exquisite, if a little more in price than I’m prepared to pay for Mini Muddy. And after all that excitement, just down the road there’s Tarte, the perfect place to refuel. It’s a very smart little coffee shop that does home-made soups, wraps and sandwiches. They also run regular pop up evening events, for which they obtain an alcohol licence, (before you ask), and these alternate between Gourmet Burger and proper Italian Pizza nights and are proving hugely popular.
What – already grabbing your car keys? But I haven’t told you where to park yet. Well the answer is just about anywhere. It’s all free along the main high street and if for any reason you can’t get a spot the car park to the side of the pub is also free. With all that money you saved on parking you can afford to treat yourself to a slice of lemon drizzle cake for pudding (yes, I did).
Holloways of Ludlow HOME, Swan House, High Street, Brasted, Kent TN16 1JJ. 01959 565818, hollowaysofludlow.com/shop/homeware.