Looking ahead

Emanuela Alladio of Alladio Sims Garden Design reminds readers to always plan ahead and anticipate any problems and risk when considering a gardening project.

Our job at Alladio Sims as garden designers is to plan and look ahead, to think of as many variables as we can – from design brief to budget, from inspiration to practicalities and to be as open as we can with our clients and suppliers.

In view of the above, for us, producing a programme and looking ahead is a necessity, no matter what size and type of project being considered. This principle applies to house and garden schemes alike, whether a project is small and straightforward, or large and complex.

Anyone who has experienced a house renovation or any rebuild project knows all too well that they often bring a loss of privacy and a level of disruption that are deeply unwelcome for everyone. The distress they can cause is even more unpleasant when it lasts for longer than expected, and although no programme can ever eliminate the risk of a setback or two, it will prepare everyone involved for an easier journey.
Screen Shot 2018-01-30 at 20.36.28
As designers, we understand that we need to be very open – it’s the only way to be. And so we are upfront and communicate from the word go any difficulties we might foresee: perhaps delays in preparing the site, working with unpredictable or poor weather, delays in planning applications, dealing with workloads and previous work commitments of chosen contractors and stock availability from nurseries.

It is no coincidence that two of the busiest times for us in the office are winter and early spring, both good times to start thinking about the process of renovating a garden, when it is still not used for family relaxation and entertainment and when plants have the best chance of establishing themselves. A garden design project starting to take shape in autumn/early winter allows a client the best chance of seeing the project accomplished by springtime, ready for when the weather suddenly turns nice and spurs us to spend more time outdoors.

Of course, no planning will ever take away all risks and unexpected surprises, but the increased awareness for all parties will help prepare for any disruption and create an easier ride for everyone during a garden project.
A designer will always be open and willing to discuss the different elements to include in a comprehensive garden programme – timelines, budget and contingency sums, planning and permits, contractors and tenders, materials and plant supply, site constraints and bespoke elements’ build and supply times, poor weather, quality of contract etc. – these are just a few things to consider when getting started. If well managed through good communication and awareness, any unforeseen issues can be better resolved and a client can feel better engaged in the process and be more accommodating.

Looking outside today, it’s certainly not too late yet: a little bit of forward planning will go a long way.

Garden 2Jon and Emanuela in the show garden they created for the Istanbul Flower Festival in 2016

Profile: Alladio Sims

Alladio Sims Garden Landscape Design Ltd was established in 2015 after Jon Sims and Emanuela Alladio collaborated on a Silver Gilt winning show garden at RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show. The two directors continue their collaborative approach throughout their practice with Jon’s background in interior architecture giving distinctive spaces and Emanuela’s passion for plants and photographic eye adding great texture and contrast.

essence info
Alladio Sims Garden Landscape Design Limited
Unit C Willow House, Dragonfly Place, London SE4 2FJ
Website: www.alladiosims.co.uk
Email: hello@alladiosims.co.uk

Colour in the home


William Yeoward is one of England’s most renowned designers. Known for his sophisticated, elegant and highly individual style, he has designed beautiful products for the home since he opened his first store in Chelsea in 1985. Following the release of his sixth book, Blue & White and other stories, Aimee Connolly sat down with William to talk about his early career and his love of colour in the home.

Q William, before opening your first store in 1985, you worked at Designers Guild. How did this experience help you launch your own brand?
It is always fascinating to see the success of growing a brand, as was happening with Designers Guild when I was working at the company. I learnt to enjoy creative energy, which I hope I always encourage at William Yeoward. My job is to find out what a person has a talent for and then develop it.

Q Do you think your background as an interior designer prepared you for product design?
I feel that to understand what is required in product design one needs to have gone out looking for it. If, as was so often the case with my decorating work, if I could not find what I wanted, then I would make it myself. It was this that encouraged me to create my own products for the home and I have done so ever since.

Q As a designer of products that are made to last, what do you think of this throwaway culture where interior items are so frequently replaced?
I think it is such a shame that customers don’t look in more detail at what they are buying. I like to think that when buying a William Yeoward product our clients appreciate the detail in both the design and execution that make them treasure their purchases. Our planet cannot possibly sustain the quick disposable society that we seem to have become.

Q You’ve recently published a book, Blue & White and other stories. Can you tell us about it?
My sixth book, Blue & White and other stories, is a much more intimate reflection on my recent work. The book is a mix of professional photography and a more personal ‘instagram’ approach that to me captures images in a very immediate way and provides a visual understanding of the inspirational journeys that I go on as I travel the world. These journeys do have a vital influence on my work and this book engages with this creative thought process.

Q The book focuses on your passion for colour in the home. What three tips can you offer homeowners uncertain of using colour in their own home?
Don’t ask too many friends if ‘you’ve got it right’. If it feels good to you – use it. If it is wrong, then it can always be changed! It wasn’t there until you put it there! Have confidence and know yourself.

Q What is the last item of luxury you bought yourself?
A fountain pen! I had surgery recently and I was so impressed by the fact that my surgeon wrote with a fountain pen.

Q What is your favourite room in your home and why?
My library. I read. I love log fires and I enjoy closing the shutters and losing myself in a private world surrounded by all of my favourite pictures, books and music.

Q If we were to take a tour of your home, what would we learn about you?
I do a lot of shopping and I have a lot of glasses and plates!

Q What does 2018 hold for the William Yeoward brand? Do you have any exciting projects you can tell us about?
2018 is always going to be the time to show off our new thoughts and concepts. As I write, I have half an eye on our edit for Christmas 2018. Always look forwards, never back.

essence info
Website: www.amara.com
This article first appeared in The Lux Pad, www.amara.com/luxpad
All photos copyright William Yeoward

William Yeoward 13ee
Surrey’s Premier Lifestyle Magazine