Join us for a peek inside the most inspiring and unique homes in West Yorkshire…
We all love a snoop around other’s people’s homes, for inspiration or plain insight into how the other half live. Enter ‘Cool homes of Leeds’, a way to peek into the region’s most inspiring pads without ever having to take your shoes off.
Known on Instagram as @greenflamingo_anna, Anna Phillips’ cheerful, colourful home is a great example of eclecticism without feeling cluttered or OTT. And did we mention she likes plants? We travelled out of the city to learn more about her style.
What’s the best thing about living in Shipley?
The best thing about living in Shipley is that one minute you can be walking around a busy town centre - with the convenience of shops and train links to Leeds, Bradford, Ilkley and Skipton - and the next you could be in a stunning woodland, a riverside walk or in the beautiful village of Saltaire (literally a ten-minute walk from my house). Saltaire is a World Heritage Site and is full of independent cafes, bars and vintage shops, not to mention Salts Mill with the David Hockney gallery. I love nothing more than a mooch around the antique shops on a Sunday afternoon, then home via the Leeds Liverpool canal.
How would you describe your home style?
If I had to choose one word to describe my home style it would be ‘eclectic’. I’m a maximalist for sure, a collector of stuff. Basically if I like it, I’ll buy it and think where to put it later. I love vintage and boho styles; I sway more to traditional but love mid century too!
Favourite places to shop for interiors in Leeds and online?
I try to buy online from independent sellers usually via Instagram or Etsy; there are tonnes of vintage sellers on there as well as crafting sellers. I find a lot of my prints online. I recently bought a print from House of Neon for my son’s bedroom and I love Jan Skácelík’s artwork, which I’ve used on my bedroom wall. Without me realising, it inspired my whole bedroom update.
Shopping in Leeds, I love a gander around Anthropologie and HomeSense (obvs). I can’t go into Leeds without a bit of plant shopping, so The Plant Point in the Corn Exchange is my first port of call, followed by the market next door.
My favourite room has to be my bedroom. It’s the biggest room in the house; it’s so light and airy and, with the recent addition of the ‘sulking room’ pink walls, it’s such a calming space. It’s also south facing and has two windows so perfect for all my plants. I spend quite a lot of time in there just chilling out in my peacock chair.
Ahah! There are so many. Maybe my mustard-coloured head that sits on my sideboard in my living room… I spotted her in Carlton Antiques in Salts Mill and fell in love. She didn’t come home with us that day, it was months later my husband snuck off and bought her for our wedding anniversary. She is now affectionately called Hattie. Also my huge barrel cactus that I picked up at the Saltaire festival, my poor husband carried it all the way home and at the time it weighed over two stone. We now need a sack trolley to move Mr Big!
Shoes off or on?
Hey, I have three boys and two dogs, has to be shoes on.
Eat in front of the television or sit at the table?
We eat at the table every evening. Well, around the island in the kitchen, but I do love eating breakfast in front of the TV. We do have a dining room but I think we’ve used it twice!
Tidy or messy?
Tidy! Not sure how I keep so much stuff tidy but I do. I hate mess!
What does a normal weekend in at yours look like?
I work most Saturdays so Sunday is our family day. It usually has a slow start, especially now the boys are teens, with a cooked breakfast and lots of coffee.
Sunday is also plant maintenance day, there are over 200 of them but I have my routine down to a fine art now so it doesn’t take too long. Then the afternoon is normally spent relaxing listening to music; between us we have a massive music collection, eclectic as always. So big we have a 7ft revolving storage tower!
My leather Chesterfield sofa and chair. We’d lived for years with second hand or cheap sofas and wanted a classic design that would last, so a Chesterfield was an obvious choice. Although I still lust over trendy velvet sofas on Instagram, I know deep down we made a good choice.
My peacock chair in my bedroom, it was £20 from a charity shop in Bradford. When I first uploaded a picture of it onto Instagram my inbox was flooded with people offering me quite large amounts of cash for it. That’s when you know you’ve got a bargain!
Any upcycling tips?
Chalk paint - what a revelation that stuff is! I’m probably a bit late to the party because I always assumed it only came in white and grey for that French antique look. Anyway, Seagulls Paint in Leeds contacted me asking if I’d like to try their recycled chalk paint in any colour I wanted. I couldn’t believe it so I chose mustard and off I went, you don’t even need to sand the surface down first. Seagulls are an absolutely great business to support - you’ll pay a fraction of the price and it’s all recycled.
Advice for others decorating their home?
Be brave! Just go for it, it can always be repainted. Oh, and I swear by painting sponges are brilliant in comparison to rollers, especially if you’re like me and are rubbish at getting into corners. They make everything so much easier.
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