|Born||Nicholas Ponsonby Haslam
27 September 1939
Great Hundridge Manor, Buckinghamshire, England
|Occupation||Interior designer, writer, singer, blogger|
|Employer||NH Design Inc.|
You can learn the subtle language of interior style, but many people simply buy it. If you put yourself in the hands of someone who knows what they are doing, you can be confident it will look good.
I'd like not to have these great puffy lobes on my ears – I'd like them to taper in.
I didn't want to look distinguished; I wanted to look fun, and also to fade into the street, into the King's Road. If I don't fade into a room at White's, that's fine. My father was chairman of Brooks' and the Beefsteak, and I was brought up in that life, and it bores me rigid.
I don't feel I have to charm somebody, I feel I want to know them; it's a different thing.
I have a thirst – it's an awful word, but I'm thirsty for knowledge. I like knowing things, the odder the better, the more obtuse the better.
Vanity is not having facelifts if you're ugly. Those people who say: 'Oh, I'd never dream of having anything done!' That's rude. It's rude, to other people, to not try and look your best; to not try and stir things up, to not reinvent… or just invent… it's one's duty to not get stuffy.
I rent a Jacobean-fronted hunting lodge in Hampshire from the National Trust and like to go there as much as possible. I've grown to love it so much, especially when writing my memoirs there at weekends.
People think that buying something for their home which is up-to-date is chic, but often it's a cliche. I call people who simply give clients the current 'thing' stylists not decorators.
I don't do nostalgia. The phrase 'the good old days' never passes my lips.
I believe every room speaks, tells you what to do to it. You have to listen to that.
I've never paid attention to politics. I only have the vaguest notion of what the IRA is.
I tend to look out for things with a resonance to my youth – artists or objects that seemed romantic all those years ago. I never buy anything purely for its value. I like possessions that smile back at me.
It's rude to not try and look up-to-date. Is rude the right word? Yes! It's rude – rude to other people.
I had a face-lift, and I would have another if I needed one. It definitely changed my life. I'm not vain. In fact I don't like looking at myself. The face-lift was just about looking rested.
Most English houses, grand or small, nestle in an intimate pastoral setting.
I'm hopeless at telling lies. I can attempt strategic ones in order not to hurt people's feelings, but then I'll blow it 10 minutes later.
I go to Topman at lunchtime and stare at these beautiful, beautiful people who work there and who are so well-dressed. And I think: 'Oh! I want to look like that! They're amazing, how well-dressed they are!'
I don't really do a big Saturday supper. I prefer entertaining in the daytime.
It's terribly easy to be well dressed. It's much more difficult to be badly dressed.
I could care less if it's Mick Jagger or the man on the street. I just like interesting people, and I happen to know a lot of stars.
I think what I have is straightforwardness, unabashedness rather than charm.
I have always aspired towards other people's looks. When I was young, I loved teddy boys; I thought they looked wonderful. Then I was a cowboy in Arizona, really for the clothes! I had a ranch for five years; I had chaps made of bearskin.
Often it's a lack of time, not taste, that leads someone to hire a decorator. A good decorator/client relationship should be like a marriage. The time one puts in needs to be extensive. One needs to listen to them and understand what they like and how they live.
It's the fashion, I tell you: big, tall women going out with tiny, tiny men.
Sometimes I think it would be nice to share everything I've got with somebody – and sometimes I think I'm very lucky to have the bathroom to myself. But I feel it would be nice to pass on my knowledge. Perhaps because I haven't got children – one wants to educate somebody.
I've always wanted to look different. I always think I've got this terrible figure. I'd like to be 3 inches taller.