Fashion designer Henry Holland’s new collection for Habitat is an anti-minimalist riot of colour, pattern and texture
Words Pendle Hart
This is your second collection for Habitat. How does it differ from the first one?
Henry Holland: The first collection went really well for us. It was so exciting to see our aesthetic and our prints translated into pieces for the home. So with the second collection we wanted to continue lines that really worked for us, such as the rugs and soft furnishings. Then we added bedding, to make it more boudoirish for the bedroom.
Is there a theme for it?
Our prints for the SS17 fashion were inspired by Romany travellers with a mixture of florals and ginghams with lots of frills and flounce. We looked at Josef Koudelka’s photography of traveller communities from the Eastern Bloc. I love the brazen mix of bold pattern used to express personality through their clothing and how a clash of materials and colour makes a bold personal statement. I wanted to capture this idea for the home. There are lots of different textures and patchworking, so we brought that to the interiors range. We’ve also fitted out a room at the Hoxton Hotel with the collection, so people can stay in it and try before they buy.
What are your favourite pieces?
The wool rug is my favourite. It’s hand-woven in India and the pile is cut at different heights to create a 3D effect, which is really clever. It’s been really exciting for me getting to work in different techniques. Floral embroidery is used on punchy gingham cushions – a hand-knit ‘net’ throw in lime overlays the pattern of our digitally printed Boho bedding in a homage to Noa Eshkol. The hand-carved Folklore rug – which takes five days to make – has 3D florals leaping out from the floor. We’ve also introduced our first ‘slogan’ cushion in a nod to House of Holland’s 10th birthday and completed the collection with the retro Misty armchair reimagined in a hot pink velvet with blue trim.
I love Habitat. I think when you start going to Habitat – and stop going to Ikea – you really start to feel like a grown up.
Where do you live and what is your house like?
My home is in Victoria Park. The house is much less mental than you’d imagine. I’ve got white walls and sanded floors. All the colour and texture is in the artwork – apart from a multi-coloured marble parquet floor in the bathroom. This is inspired by Martin Creed’s pink parlour at Sketch and his amazing Scotsman Steps in Edinburgh. I love him.
My mum is an antiques dealer and she has a chateau in France so she brings me back lots of 50s pieces from markets. I like vintage and modern pieces mixed together; I like putting things together that you wouldn’t usually.
How does fashion translate into interiors?
I think lots of trends extend into various areas of life, reflecting social changes and the world around us. Maximalism is obviously one of my favourite trends, which I think expresses escapism and shows a reaction against people feeling fed up of not being listened to. It’s also part of the British tradition of over-the-top eccentricity. I’d love to do our Rave Nana collection from 2013 as an interiors collection, with lots of acid lap blankets and throws.
What do you do to relax?
Sleep! And exercise.
Where do you like to shop, eat and drink?
I don’t really do shopping. Working in this industry does skew your brain a bit in terms of fashion shopping.
What’s next for House of Holland?
I’m going to do some sportswear in collaboration with Umbro, and I’ve got a Woody Woodpecker project with Universal coming up. And I don’t know – maybe we’ll do children’s rooms, fun vintage ones. I hope we’ll be doing more for Habitat. There are lots of areas to explore. We could do wallpapers and upholstery fabrics and lots of prints. There is so much scope!
To celebrate the launch of House of Holland’s collaboration with London design brand Habitat, British fashion designer Henry Holland has taken over one of the Hoxton Hotel’s Roomy Rooms for a month-long residency throughout March.
The limited edition room is styled with artwork and furnishings featuring designs from his collection, Free To Roam. Stretch out in the king-size bed and enjoy the designer’s statement interior range in all its floral glory.