We are thoroughly of the opinion that your children should not take over your home. Have them, by all means; welcome them into the fold. We just don’t want to see evidence of them everywhere. When Chloe from Marloe London sent me these pictures of her living space, my first thought was, “but where is the child-related debris?” (Okay, “I really like that yellow chair” came first, but that was hot on its heels.)
So I asked Chloe – who runs Marloe London with her friend Marina – to explain to us how she achieves this magical effect of vanishing of her children.It transpires that Chloe is One of Us. Unlike my husband, she would not think I was ever-so-slightly deranged to do a quick zhuzh of the downstairs after the children have gone to bed. (I like my living space to be tidy, clean and look like adults live there, okay? I like flowers. I like candles. I like coffee table books and clean surfaces. I dream of having a separate playroom, but until then, I will continue to edit my children’s possessions and tidy the house at the end of the day. (For other like-minded parents, we recommend our friend Emily’s blog, The Pink House.)
In the meantime, here are Chloe’s rules for keeping your home stylish (even under pressure from small, would-be invaders). Do also check the beautiful swaddles Marloe London create (you can even have them personalised) – so gorgeous you can even wear them as a wrap, so perfect for holidays (ours has come with us to Cornwall!) and for further ahhh factor, follow them on Instagram @marloe_london.
- The best way to keep a stylish house is to try and stay out of it for most of the day! I have two boys who need exercising, and if they’re not tearing around a park, they’ll be tearing up something inside.
- I have one child-free space in the house – my study, where I work on my business, Marloe London. This space has become our Fort Knox, where my husband and I try and keep our more treasured possessions safe: he, his second-hand books; and me, due to the generosity of my art-dealer father, my favourite pictures. So far, the enemy have breached some of the lower shelves, but they aren’t able to climb the walls (yet).
- The rugs may look like new, but they have mostly been been flipped over at some point in their life – concealing memorable red wine stains and squashed playdough.
- Since my second baby, I have developed terrible OCD and tidy the house every evening after they have gone to bed – perhaps the one thing I have some degree of control over. (My husband would say this is untrue and I have always had it).