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Behind the scenes at Blackthorpe House

PUBLISHED: 16:30 22 June 2011 | UPDATED: 19:35 20 February 2013

Behind the scenes at Blackthorpe House

Behind the scenes at Blackthorpe House

Carrie Fitton admires the style of a home on the Rougham estate owned by a one-time textile designer for Liberty and John Lewis

Carrie Fitton admires the style of a home on the Rougham estate owned by a one-time textile designer for Liberty and John Lewis




Just behind the 16th century Blackthorpe Barn, home to Suffolk craft fairs and music concerts, sits elegant Blackthorpe House. Part of the Rougham Estate, this beautiful ochre-coloured Georgian house is now home to a vibrant new interior design venture.
Starting life as a textile designer, Tony Cooper produced fabrics for the likes of Liberty and John Lewis as well as outlets in New York before starting to evolve interests in fashion and clothing.
Fourteen years ago he helped establish the shop at Wyken vineyards, the Leaping Hare country store, taking it from a tiny outlet to a hugely successful venture. This allowed Tony to pursue his love of buying, travelling to Scandinavia, France and Italy to source an eclectic selection of furniture and all manner of unusual and beautiful home accessories.
He explains: Ive always been appreciative of all sides of design, and I found that my heart lies in retail and buying.
So stepping into interior design seems an organic and natural progression, combining Tonys love of buying, his meticulous eye for detail and innate sense of design a blend of all the things he does best.
The house provides a perfect showcase for the range of services that Blackthorpe Design offers, from total house design to advice on fabric, wallpaper and colour schemes to sourcing furniture and specific items be it just a pair of curtains, a single piece of furniture or selecting antiques.
The added luxury extra with Blackthorpe House is the opportunity to stay two bedrooms have been exquisitely prepared for bed and breakfast guests, and, as some of the displayed items in the house are on sale, theres also the opportunity to buy soft furnishings from cushions, curtains and lamps as well as furniture. Interestingly this means the look and style will be constantly refreshed and evolving.




Some of the displayed items in the house are on sale, theres also the opportunity to buy soft furnishings from cushions, curtains and lamps as well as furniture.





Oozing classical elegance, the chic styling of every room displays the potential look that can be achieved for clients. Entry is through a light, sunny conservatory, atmospherically set for afternoon tea, through into the hall decorated with elegant Ralph Lauren wallpaper, locally reupholstered wing chairs, vast wall mirror and carved sideboard.
The sitting room has a muted taupe and smoky mushroom colour palette with curtains and cushions from Coquecigrues of Paris, with sofas and chairs from another French firm, Camille Bertrand, along with locally sourced antique glassware. In the airy dining room one wall has fresh bird print wallpaper by Zoffany, and the large picture windows through which light streams look out on to the garden.
On reaching the first floor landing you could almost be setting foot into the grounds of the old Chelsea hospital the imaginative use of a photograph transformed into wallpaper via a company called Surface View dominates an entire wall; this clever idea could be applied to any photograph for any space.
The master bedroom exudes an air of classical antiquity, dove grey walls provide a backdrop to soft furnishings in classical prints on the bedhead and cushions. The second guest room is in shades of red, the bed with a sumptuous canopy and cover in pretty Toile de Jouy fabric, while the bathroom has contrastingly sassy olive and bronze snake-skin patterned walls. The top floor offers the flexible option of a twin bedded room.
Among the team of people working with Tony is Myra Frost, a paint effect specialist whose expert skills can transform beams, walls and floors, along with local upholsterers and restorers, and Tonys business
partner Susie, who can seek out antiques on clients behalf.
Life at Blackthorpe House is set to be lively. Twice yearly the UKs top fabric houses will be displaying their upcoming collections, presenting a unique chance to view new designs from companies including Osborne & Little, Zoffany, GP & J Baker, Colefax and Fowler, Nina Campbell, Mulberry, Designers Guild, Romo, Lewis & Wood, Vanessa Arbuthnot and Emily Bond.
They will also be hosting various events indoors and outside - author and hen expert Francine Raymond held a hen keeping course in April, while florists, painters and other artists will be giving regular talks and showing small scale exhibitions.
Further down the line there will be the capacity for small conferences, providing an inspirational venue for thought and discussion of all kinds. This is work in progress in a visually beautiful way.


Blackthorpe House & Design
http://blackthorpedesign.com/
Blackthorpe House, Rougham,
Bury St Edmunds IP30 9JG.
B&B from 80 a night, 01359 270996.

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