How does a stylist and fashion editor make her home completely her own? Alice Casely-Hayford visited Aurelia Donaldson's west London apartment to find out
Self-confessed magpie and Deputy Style Editor of the Telegraph Magazine, Aurelia Donaldson took time out of her seriously busy schedule to show us around her Notting Hill flat.
Adorned with art books and cherished pieces the globe-trotting stylist has accumulated over the years, her eclectic home is a treasure trove of prized possessions...
How would you describe your interior style and does it reflect the way you dress?
I basically just have a collection of things I love around, like books, records and family things and I'm a similar dresser. My sense of style is very un-put-together. I wear things I love by designers I love. My style is clean and tomboy and I guess my flat is the same.
You've lived here for six years. How has it evolved?
I moved here straight from my family home so some of it came from there, but most of it is a collection of books.
I like having references for my work so I collect old fashion books, old photography books but mainly old art books like Bauhaus, Pop Art and photographer Slim Aarons' books. I'm a bit of a book fiend.
I used to spend Sundays at the Oxfam on Portobello Road and at Portobello Market buying books. I had to stop because I have nowhere to put them. I stole my sofas from my sister. It's very much what I could find when I could find it.
Sofa-stealing aside, where do you shop for your flat?
There's this antique shop on Golborne Road called Les Couilles Du Chien - "the Dog's Bollocks" - which is awesome and has loads of amazing old glass domes and huge disco balls - everything from vintage to contemporary. If I had a lot of money, I'd buy things from there. I also like a lot of Scandinavian furniture like Fritz Hansen.
Have there been any incredible places you've visited for work that have inspired you?
I do get super inspired by places but the problem is then a week later I'll see another beautiful place. A few years ago when I was assisting, I was going to Mexico and Mauritius and seeing amazing tiled floors but I've always been aware that I don't get fazed by fashion, retain who I am and have a home that's very separate from what I do.
How does your place differ to where you grew up and your parents' homes?
My house now reminds me of my house when I was growing up because it was my mum and dad's aesthetics colliding. My dad (Matthew Donaldson) is a still life photographer so he's very aware of clean lines and built his studio which is really beautiful with a lot of sky lights and open lighting. My mum is the total opposite - her style is very homely. The chairs are there because they're comfy, the table's very big because she wants the family to eat there together. I hope what I have here is an element of both of them but I'm definitely leaning towards the side of my mum because I can't hide things. Everything is out all the time.
Where do you see yourself living next?
Because I was 18 when I moved in here, I'm very invested in this flat. My boyfriend lives here with me now, and when he moved in I made sure we changed it around.
One of the things I love about being here is that I feel quite shut off. I'm a bus ride into town or a tube journey to East but I don't bump into a lot of people here and I can be very private if I want to be.
I still feel very excited by London - I've never had the desire to move to New York or Paris.
How do you unwind, returning home after shoots or fashion weeks?
I love coming home. I like putting on my tracksuit, (my boyfriend puts on his matching tracksuit) and then watching Criminal Minds or Downton Abbey.
See Phoebe-Lettice Thompson's full shoot of Aurelia's gorgeous apartment below...
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