The regeneration of St Leonards is hitting the news. Stuart and Sarah Taylor’s house, a classic redbrick late Victorian villa with decorative plasterwork, is an excellent example of the kind of properties which attract couples with young families to decamp to the seaside town. A collection of quirky finds and object trouves transforms this classic Victorian villa into a funky pad with industrial glamour.

Stuart bought the plaster statue of an Italian traffic policeman holding an ice cream from the St Leonards pub (when they replaced him with a snowman...). The Mickey Mouse figure is from McCully & Crane in Rye. The macrame plant holder is from Etsy

Stuart bought the plaster statue of an Italian traffic policeman holding an ice cream from the St Leonards pub (when they replaced him with a snowman...). The Mickey Mouse figure is from McCully & Crane in Rye. The macrame plant holder is from Etsy

The bicycle is from Bell’s Bicycles in Hastings Old Town and the picture of a sailor was from McCully & Crane

The bicycle is from Bell’s Bicycles in Hastings Old Town and the picture of a sailor was from McCully & Crane

Sarah and Stuart spotted the drum-shaped cocktail bar in the window of an antiques shop in Queen’s Road, Hastings

Sarah and Stuart spotted the drum-shaped cocktail bar in the window of an antiques shop in Queen’s Road, Hastings

The walls of the kitchen are painted in Charcoal by Valspar. The tiles for the feature wall are from Topps Tiles. They bought the leather club chair in London years ago

The walls of the kitchen are painted in Charcoal by Valspar. The tiles for the feature wall are from Topps Tiles

They bought the leather club chair in London years ago

They bought the leather club chair in London years ago

A Coca Cola crate Stuart found at Tower Antiques, in St Leonards, makes a perfect herbs and spices store.

A Coca Cola crate Stuart found at Tower Antiques, in St Leonards, makes a perfect herbs and spices store

The walls of the generously proportioned kitchen are painted gunmetal grey

The walls of the generously proportioned kitchen are painted gunmetal grey

The 1950s Russian print is from McCully & Crane

The 1950s Russian print is from McCully & Crane

Bi-fold doors at the end of the dining room open on to the garden. The hanging chair is from Sunbury Antiques Market

Bi-fold doors at the end of the dining room open on to the garden. The hanging chair is from Sunbury Antiques Market

Stuart works from a studio in the garden. The walls are painted in Charcoal by Valspar. Stuart found the technical drawings rummaging through a drawer at Sunbury Antiques Market

Stuart works from a studio in the garden. The walls are painted in Charcoal by Valspar. Stuart found the technical drawings rummaging through a drawer at Sunbury Antiques Market

“Ideally, I like designs to be properly thought out and drawn,” he says, “that’s why I love those old plans that I’ve framed. Someone took real care and attention over them. Computers are useful, but they should be used as a tool, they’re not an end in themselves.”

“Ideally, I like designs to be properly thought out and drawn,” he says, “that’s why I love those old plans that I’ve framed. Someone took real care and attention over them. Computers are useful, but they should be used as a tool, they’re not an end in themselves.”

Stuart found the letters which spell out ‘wolf’ at McCully & Crane

Stuart found the letters which spell out ‘wolf’ at McCully & Crane

With so many conversation pieces, there seems little possibility that guests here would be stuck for something to discuss

With so many conversation pieces, there seems little possibility that guests here would be stuck for something to discuss

The copper light fitting is by Tom Dixon. Stuart commissioned the oversized Ace of Spades from McCully & Crane to use in his interior scheme for The Rum Kitchen, in Kingly Court, off Carnaby Street, and liked it so much he ordered one for home too. The Kiss Me Quick sign, Smiley face and the Lucky sign are also from McCully & Crane

The copper light fitting is by Tom Dixon. Stuart commissioned the oversized Ace of Spades from McCully & Crane to use in his interior scheme for The Rum Kitchen, in Kingly Court, off Carnaby Street, and liked it so much he ordered one for home too. The Kiss Me Quick sign, Smiley face and the Lucky sign are also from McCully & Crane

At the top of the stairs is a painted wooden sign saying ‘Lucky’

At the top of the stairs is a painted wooden sign saying ‘Lucky’

A red Anglepoise lamp sits on top of a chest made from card index drawers that Stuart and Sarah found in Hastings Old Town. They have collected the swans from boot fairs and vintage shops over several years. The pendant light is from Dyke & Dean. The ‘Wild Banana Club’ print is by their friend Ben Allen

A red Anglepoise lamp sits on top of a chest made from card index drawers that Stuart and Sarah found in Hastings Old Town. They have collected the swans from boot fairs and vintage shops over several years. The pendant light is from Dyke & Dean. The ‘Wild Banana Club’ print is by their friend Ben Allen

The framed Bang! poster in the master bedroom is a limited edition print by pop artist William Blanchard

The framed Bang! poster in the master bedroom is a limited edition print by pop artist William Blanchard

The Art Deco walnut dressing table is from Little Treasures in Hastings Old Town

The Art Deco walnut dressing table is from Little Treasures in Hastings Old Town

The sideshow poster is from McCully & Crane

The sideshow poster is from McCully & Crane

The Edwardian walnut wardrobe set in the master bedroom was an amazing find in the Red Cross charity shop on Hastings seafront

The Edwardian walnut wardrobe set in the master bedroom was an amazing find in the Red Cross charity shop on Hastings seafront

The children have the top storey of the house to themselves. The vintage firefighters’ truck is from London Road Antiques, in St Leonards

The children have the top storey of the house to themselves. The vintage firefighters’ truck is from London Road Antiques, in St Leonards

In their daughter’s bedroom, Stuart created shelves out of old apple crates. Her vintage turntable sits on an old bookshelf from Rye vintage market

In their daughter’s bedroom, Stuart created shelves out of old apple crates. Her vintage turntable sits on an old bookshelf from Rye vintage market

Their daughter's room with retro accessories

Their daughter's room with retro accessories

The pendant lights hanging from gold braided cable were inspired by a project he designed for a shopping mall in Kazakhstan

The pendant lights hanging from gold braided cable were inspired by a project he designed for a shopping mall in Kazakhstan

Their son’s room has an elevated bed made from stained timbers. The 1950s chest of drawers was found in a charity shop in London and the F - the first letter of their son’s name - was an online find.

Their son’s room has an elevated bed made from stained timbers. The 1950s chest of drawers was found in a charity shop in London and the F - the first letter of their son’s name - was an online find

The tiger print is another William Blanchard

The tiger print is another William Blanchard

Sarah’s hair and beauty salon Truffle is on St Leonards sea front. The old hairdryer was from Era of Style in Bexhill and the chair from Sunbury Antiques Market. The giant red brandy balloon vases were found in an antiques shop in Hastings Old Town. An old drinks crate makes a perfect magazine rack

Sarah’s hair and beauty salon Truffle is on St Leonards sea front. The old hairdryer was from Era of Style in Bexhill and the chair from Sunbury Antiques Market. The giant red brandy balloon vases were found in an antiques shop in Hastings Old Town. An old drinks crate makes a perfect magazine rack

Stuart found the window abandoned on the pavement of a nearby St Leonards street. The pendant lights are from Hastings Antiques Centre, in Norman Road, St Leonards

Stuart found the window abandoned on the pavement of a nearby St Leonards street. The pendant lights are from Hastings Antiques Centre, in Norman Road, St Leonards

Clients in Truffle sit in old barbers’ chairs sourced on eBay

Clients in Truffle sit in old barbers’ chairs sourced on eBay

  • words:
  • pictures: David Merewether
  • styling: Helen Barton

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