Company : Tattylicious
Owner: Caroline Holding

Today I wanted to bring your attention to the incredibly talented founder of a local up-cycling business, Caroline Holding. She loves nothing more than upcycling unloved furniture to be loved once more. Her incredible skill and eye for detail makes each pieces she creates for her business ‘Tattylicious’ a unique work of art.

I thought the best way for you to get to know her and her fabulous business would be through a quick fire Q&A so here we go…..

Q.You create the most amazing pieces, how did this all start for you?

A. Thank you! It started when I was made redundant after 10 years in the same job, I didn’t want to carry on working in a factory and I took my chance to do something I really enjoyed. The first piece I created, a set of decoupage draws, was a pleasure to make and when it sold immediately it encouraged me to continue. I started buying pieces of old furniture that no-one wanted in there homes anymore and upcycled them. I add colours and textures with paint and papers and it turns the discarded furniture into beautiful, unique pieces. I have a huge passion for what I do and can’t wait for the next project to start.

Q. All the pieces you create have a real ‘wow’ factor. There is always a level of detail that is unexpected and thrilling. When you source the furniture what do you look for? Does your process work for any piece or do you look for specific criteria?

A.I try not to go out specifically looking for a certain piece .I like to work with what I find. I’m drawn to older furniture made with solid wood rather than something modern or flat-packed from IKEA or similar. I love to sand the old wood down and get back to the barebones of the piece before I start to apply my art work. I find that you can’t achieve the same finish with modern items and it doesn’t give the quality feel that I’m looking for.
When I’m looking for my next project I try and envisage what I can do with it to make it more appealing. The ideas usually start to flow as soon as I see a certain piece and the more vintage the more fun I have with the transformation!

Q. The transformed pieces I have seen including the stunning drinks cabinets have clearly had a level of ‘editing’ done to them. How easy is it to repurpose furniture to accept new uses? And what are you favourite examples?

A. I love doing the drinks cabinets. They are great fun and I have returning customers that love how unique they are. It’s easy to repurpose any piece as long as its not falling apart and it’s in good condition. Also check for woodworm in older pieces. A good finish is all in the preparation. Complete all the cleaning/sanding and repairs carefully, then you can start the fun bit!
I have too many favourites to choose one but I think I’m most proud of the large Queen Anne sideboard I did in the graduated colours with a flower design which is now in the gorgeous home of @gooseontheloose .

Q. The pieces you create are a real focal point in any home. What advice would you give to anyone feeling brave and wanting to step away from grey and into the world of colourful, bright interiors? Do you find it useful to work with a overall interiors scheme in mind?

A. To anyone who’s sick of looking at grey walls and furniture start off by painting one wall like a chimney breast in a colour that might match a cushion or blouse that you love. At the end of the day, you can paint over it! As for furniture, start with a small piece so you could perhaps move it around your home till you find the perfect spot. If you can put together a look that really suits your personality you will find it easy to accessories with furniture. If you can be brave and be true to your individual taste you can just keep building on that scheme until you are happy.

Q.Your home is an incredible combination of colour and pattern, a real reflection of your authentic self. Why do you think people should look to reuse and up-cycling to decorate their homes?

A. My home is an eclectic mix of different colours and I think you should go with what makes you happy. I dont follow a rule book. Everything in my home makes me feel joy.
By reusing and upcycling furniture, you are giving your home a unique look. Besides saving money, it’s saving things from going into landfill. My hubby has even bought back pieces from the skips that people were throwing away! It’s unbelievable what people will just throw. Even tv programs are being made about it now!

Q.Finally, how do we get our hands on a piece for our homes (I’m first in-line please!!) do you do commissions??? What is the process and how do you get the homeowners preferences into the design?

A. To get a piece of my furniture I have a Facebook page called Tattylicious where I sell my finished pieces. I only do a couple of commissions at a time, as I want to give them my full attention. I prefer a loose design brief, perhaps just a colour or pattern preference. I like to be uninhibited during the process to achieve the ‘wow’ look that attracts my customers to my work. If you would like to commission a piece or take a finished Tattylicious piece home, please call or message me, I’d love to talk to you about your ideas.