I wanted our home to look honest to our personalities and to fill it with things we’ve made. To make it feel real, comfortable, warm and happy.
The talented textile designer Tori Murphy shot onto our radar last year with her monochrome designs and super stylish textiles. Before training as a textile designer Tori was a fashion stylist, where she developed her eye for pattern and quality fabrics. “I’m naturally drawn to simple pattern,” she says. “I like working with really good materials so while the patterns are quite bold I try to let the designs and fabrics speak for themselves.”
Tori trained in textile design at the Royal College of Art before going on to design textiles in Milan for Dior, Fendi and DKNY. She lives in a two-bedroom terraced cottage in Nottingham with her boyfriend, Joby Woodhouse, a carpenter, and the couple’s home is a reflection of her passion for honest materials and a simple palette. “I wanted our home to look honest to our personalities and to fill it with things we’ve made,” says Tori. “To make it feel real, comfortable, warm and happy.”
The palette is simple and monochrome, punctuated by natural wood, ceramics and paintings. “When we first saw the house, it was totally empty apart from the kitchen units,” Tori says. “It was in a bit of a state but we just got on with it.” They painted the ground floor rooms white, stripping the floorboards in the sitting room and adding a reclaimed woodburning stove. In the dining room and kitchen, Joby made shelving from scaffolding boards in the workshop he has created in the cellar and added a handcrafted mantlepiece, underneath which sits a bench, also made by him.
“I love texture, interesting surfaces, colours and patterns,” Tori says. “It doesn’t have to be expensive, just beautiful. I have a lot of silver plate where the patina has faded to create absract patterns and I love tarnished things, the natural way things age and I’m drawn to anything with imperfections.”
Objects with contrasting textures such as smooth wood, faded metals or delicate glass are carefully placed next to each other on the reclaimed scaffolding shelving in the sitting and dining rooms downstairs. “Because I’ve moved around a lot it was really important for me to create a sense of home, explains Murphy. “I’ve always wanted to be able to build a warm, safe environment and my home is also an extension of my creativity at work.” We loved it. With a collaboration with Jo Malone this Christmas and several exciting new projects in the pipe line, Tori is definitely one to watch.