At Home With Lisa @lisa_loves_vintage
This week we are at home with Lisa Piddington. The lovely and incredibly creative lady behind the massively popular home instagram account @lisa_loves_vintage where she shares incredible images of her vintage styled home. Her amazing Victorian home has featured in many magazines including Reclaim, Period Homes, Buzz Feed, Period Living ,The Sunday Times, and Real Homes.
Tell us a bit about you
I turned 50 this year, having the best celebration with three of my favourite people during lockdown. I live with my two teenage children – Scarlett, who’s nearly 18, and Noah, who’s 15 – and three rescue cats, Sidney, Mr Minghus and Ella Bella Rockefeller. I work as a freelance writer, PR consultant, stylist and content creator for luxury lifestyle brands.
Tell us about your home
My home is a traditional Victorian terrace in Birmingham’s Bournville village, just down the road from the world famous Cadbury factory. It’s typical of the era, long and thin, but I have kept all the original windows so it’s a very light house (although it can be a wee bit chilly in the winter!). It also has high ceilings so the rooms feel big and bright. When I bought it 20 years ago it needed lots of love so I restored the fireplaces, sanded back the floorboards and fitted wooden doors – I wanted to embrace its heritage as much as I could on a very tight budget.
How would you describe your home?
Two words … vintage eclectic. I’m one of life’s great collectors, from rusty old tins, antique Kokeshi dolls, vintage bird cages and floral fabric to foxed mirrors, portrait paintings, religious icons and French enamelware, and everything in between.
My home is filled with 30 years of car boot, flea market, charity shop and auction finds. There’s even furniture I’ve spotted dumped at the side of the road that’s found a place. My kids are forever rolling their eyes when I come home with my latest bit of frippery.
Which is your favourite room in the house?
My lounge, because it’s the most relaxing space. I decorated it during lockdown last year when my son and I learnt how to wallpaper. The colour on the chimney breast and one wall is called Mallard Green by Dulux Heritage while the wallpaper is from Albany (which I adore so much I have the black version in my bedroom).
When I moved in the fireplace was boarded over and hid the beautiful brick arch, and the French burner was won in a poker game. I love how it feels cosy and warm in the winter but, because there are so many plants and French doors, it feels like a garden room in the summer.
How does your home reflect any passions or interests?
I think as soon as you walk through my front door, you’re aware of my passion for collecting – there’s very little space on my walls and shelves. Having said that, I am a very tidy person; everything has a place, and I always like to think it’s not a cluttered home but a curated one (just don’t look too closely at the dust).
What are your favourite items in the home?
The leather club chair in my lounge. It’s where I curl up, where I nap and where I drink my morning coffee. I remember countless cuddles with my children in this chair and finishing off favourite books; I can recall sitting here having contractions before babies came along and sinking into it to mourn the loss of too many loved ones. Over the years this salvaged piece of furniture has been at the heart of so many memories. My vintage collecting has always been about rescuing pieces that once held precious memories for previous owners. I’ve never bought something because it’s fashionable or on-trend or because everyone has one, but because I know that it once meant the world to someone else and now it means the world to me. That sentimentality also explains why I struggle to throw anything out!
When you moved into your house was it the finished article or was it a project?
It was very much a project but I fell in love as soon as I walked through the door; it was a 1970s time warp and not in a good way, but it did have great bones. I had very little budget to do anything major so I set about doing everything as cheap as I could, hence why I started collecting vintage because in those days the prices were ridiculously low and you could fill a room with preloved treasures for pennies.
Much of the work was decorative; the kitchen, for example, had horrid fake wood units and because I’ve never been able to afford to have new ones fitted, I just keep painting them a different colour.
Have you had any DIY or styling disasters?
I love colour, from dark delicious greens to cheery yellows, but I did once decide to paint a room grey as that was very much the in-thing. For some reason it looked so drab in my home and I hated it so much that I repainted it the next morning. I think I have a house that wants to stand out and not blend in.
What is your top home styling tip?
Fill your home with things that make your heart sing. When I redecorate a room, I’m never sure how it’s going to end up. I have a vague idea in mind, fall in love with a wallpaper or a painting and go from there with the hope that it will all come together. Styling is all about layering, from the cushions, throws and rugs to the mirrors, pictures and collectibles that make up a gallery wall. And if in doubt add lots of plants.
Is there anything in your home that you couldn’t live without?
Putting aside the obvious (kids and cats) I think that list would be endless – I’m not into gadgets but I do love my frippery and I love being surrounded by my collections. I’m not designed to live a minimal existence.
They say that every home tells visitors a story about who lives there. What do you think your home says about you?
I’d like to think it says I’m a creative collector and I do love seeing peoples’ reactions when they visit for the first time. My house has been described as a movie set and a museum, but to me it’s my home and my favourite place in the whole world.
If you enjoyed being at home with Lisa, you might like to take a look inside other popular home styling accounts on instagram and find out more about the people behind them. You can see more of these "at home with" articles here
You can view Lisa's amazing instagram account here. You are sure to love this account.
The Home Edit
Lived-in look or show home?
Lived in every time.
If you could only paint your walls one colour, which one would it be?
What is your pet hate when it comes to your own or other’s homes?
Huge TVs as a focal point.
Favourite front door colour?
Carpet or Floorboards
Floorboards and a massive Beni Ourain rug.
Kitchen table dining or formal dining room?
Kitchen table filled with lots of food and lots of laughter.
High gloss or rustic?
Wallpaper or Brick Walls?