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Isabella Oliver founder's tangerine dream house

Vibrant and eclectic, Baukjen de Swaan Arons’ home is the perfect space for her family. It also reflects the design ideals behind her stylish clothing brand…


Posted: 2 September 2011
by Junior


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Baukjen and Vanessa got chatting over a pair of Prada flip-flops while they were relaxing by the pool at Babington House in Somerset. Both were pregnant at the time and they started to discuss the idea for a new maternitywear company. “We couldn’t find any stylish maternity clothing and thought there was a real gap in the market,” says Baukjen. So Isabella Oliver was born, named after Vanessa’s daughter, Isabella, and Baukjen’s son, Oliver. “When the business first launched, we wanted something vivid and eye-catching for our logo and orange seemed just right – it’s such a warm and vibrant colour,” says Baukjen. “Then when Geoff and I were thinking about our kitchen, we wanted to create a really cosy feel. When it gets dark the colour becomes even more intense, almost glowing Moroccan orange. It’s really beautiful.”

The kitchen is a large modern extension at the back of the house and light pours in through the huge window and the glass roof. Baukjen and Geoff have followed the Dutch tradition of not having any curtains. “In Holland, there’s a real sense of having nothing to hide,” says Geoff. On a winter’s night, the window reflects the kitchen’s gleaming granite surfaces, wooden table and tangerine floor. By day, it offers a sweeping vista of Hampstead Heath. “We’re stealing the light and the view,” says Geoff. “Our garden looks far bigger because you can see so much of the heath.”

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