In this South London home, color-blocked storage keeps the family organized


The definition of eclectic— deriving ideas from a wide range of sources, according to the Oxford English Dictionary — in other words, there is no definition. A new book, The eclectic life by Alexander Breeze, released on May 17, proves in its pages that decorative style is truly in the eye of the beholder. One home is decorated in English country glamor with layers of floral prints and textured upholstery, while across the continent another only appears minimalist until you reach the hall. owner’s carpentry. Design-savvy couple Jason and Jenny Rose MacLean lean into the aesthetic with bold primary colors and a mix of furniture eras (see: a yellow-patterned fridge and a toe-to-toe turquoise bathroom ). Ahead, in a clip, we dive into the London home of the MacLeans and how they use hanging storage and geometric prints to distract the eye.

In the bedroom of the MacLeans’ son, Stanley, the stained MDF cabinets include not only hidden storage, but also neon baskets for toys hidden in the bottom, as well as a niche for favorite toys and rocks gathered on trips out of London.

Behind a neon orange door, tucked away on a side street in Camberwell, south London, is the home of Jason and Jenny Rose MacLean, a design duo who love bright colors and strong patterns. “We visited the Eames House in California and really wanted a house in London with a similar feel,” says Jason. “When we saw this one, we knew it was for us.” The house was designed in the 1970s by architect Martin Crowley as his own home and is built on the site of what were then two garages.

In this South London home, color-blocked storage keeps the family organized

“Storage is so important,” Jason believes. “It’s almost always so tidy – we really live that way. Everything we want hidden is hidden. Storage units allow the detritus of life to be stuffed into drawers and cupboards, and the ceiling has built-in hanging units that are original to the building.

As the door to the street closes behind you, you find yourself in a small cobbled courtyard. Plants are partly in Willy Guhl concrete planters, and the glass front of the offices and bedroom allows light to fill the rooms. “The house and its structure completely dictated the decor and furnishings we chose,” says Jason. The space has its own distinctive voice – the contrasting textures of the cinder block walls, the painted metal of the exposed structural supports – leading the MacLeans to sympathetically furnish and decorate the rooms in keeping with this aesthetic: “But it all felt very easy and natural , because of the kinds of things we were both drawn to and collected in. It all really settled into the space, and over time we added to our collection and the house evolved. the structure of the 1970s, and it shows.The German modular storage units in the office and living room and the key pieces of furniture, such as Allan Gould’s string chair, fit perfectly into the space and sit proudly on their canvases colored backgrounds.

In this South London home, color-blocked storage keeps the family organized

The pattern on the kitchen wall takes the focus away from what could be quite a dominant part of the room – the wall oven – and is by Eley Kishimoto, the London-based fashion and design company renowned for its printed design.

The kitchen, a bright yellow space with concealed strip lighting and Hollywood starlet-style mirrors, shows off the duo’s signature color blocking. The pattern on the cupboards is Eley Kishimoto, a longtime collaborator on various Studio MacLean projects. It is partially repeated in the perforated metal grilles (remaining from an old project) superimposed between the office and the hallway; the light filtering through artfully casts bright spots onto the blind wall opposite.

In this South London home, color-blocked storage keeps the family organized

At first glance, the MacLeans appear to eschew wear and tear, preferring a clean aesthetic and crisp lines, but closer examination reveals places that have been allowed to show some distress; the sofa leather is slightly worn, and the dents and scratches on the desk in the office add light wear to these parts. There are even a few places where there are pegs in the cinder blocks.

The shelving system that divides the long kitchen-living area is primarily for books, but one shelf is dedicated to a small collection of vintage toolboxes. “We have ample storage throughout the house, which is part of the original interior design,” says Jason. “It allows us to run what we have, although some things, like our French Brillié clock in the office, have always been in the same place. Other items, such as models, vintage toys, and pottery, come and go. From time to time, it’s good to sort out and display new objects. But what is shown is carefully curated. In addition to being color-blocked, items are displayed in groups of similar pieces for greater impact. This is also the case with the show’s artwork, original test prints from the 1930s to 1970s for Mac Fisheries supermarkets. “We actually have a massive collection of around 120 of them in stock. The ones in our living room were designed by Hans Schleger. The colors are so opaque and vibrant,” he adds.

In this South London home, color-blocked storage keeps the family organized

In this South London home, color-blocked storage keeps the family organized

The pale blue bathroom was done in a bit of a rush, as the MacLeans redecorated ahead of a party to celebrate their wedding: “We were grouting and tiling the day before the ceremony. The en-suite “pod” bathroom in the corner of the master bedroom is a more recent addition, and the swirling linear tiling was inspired by that of German U-Bahn stations.

Shortly after we photographed their home, the MacLeans sold the property and moved to rural Gloucestershire, to a dilapidated building, part of which is 300 years old. A bit of contrast. How are they going to decorate it? Jason doesn’t reveal much: “It will be similar, to some degree, but performed in a slightly different way. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night thinking: What have we done?! But this is a new challenge.

In this South London home, color-blocked storage keeps the family organized

“The main elements of our house have never changed,” reveals Jason. “The floor we lay, the bathroom, the simple colors, the yellow theme… but over time life changes, and so does the house, but for us it mainly changes the pictures on the walls or display elements rather than decor.
eclectic life book cover

The Life Eclectic: Very Unique Interior Designs from Around the World ($45)



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