Lady Astor New Flagship Furniture Store

>> Friday, October 1, 2010

Daily Telegraph - Who in their right mind would open a shop selling high-end furniture now? Certainly, the nation prepares to double dip into recession, rather than in his portfolio? Yes, the Bank of England pushes us to embark on a spending spree, but not £ 99 and £ 285 planters Chinoiserie trunks night a luxury too far in the current climate?

Apparently not, according Viscountess (Annabel) Astor, businesswoman, co-founder of Home Oka, and as the mother of Samantha Cameron, the mother-in-law of Prime Minister. This week the launch of its new three-storey emporium of furniture-cum-lifestyle in London Fulham Road which is creating a buzz to compete with the beehives on the roof of Fortnum & Mason.

Sales of all flavors of lime and lavender set across the room, including table, cutlery and candles, Oka is marketing the taste of the upper class to the mass of the class average since 1999 through a chain of small shops and A mail-order business booming. Think Habitat for adults, affluent, well-connected adults who seek a second home in France or in Fort William made with thick, well-pricing banks and lamps, sheets, pillows and funky classics needs.

"We have customers that a page view in the catalog and place an order for literally everything, chairs, rugs, night tables, vases and pictures," said Lady Astor, a practice more youthful 62 "in the country. New Shop try our people ideas and inspiration to give. I am a big fan of neutral colors accented with honor. Changing the pillows, for example, can completely transform the feel of a room at a very low cost.

"We have a very contemporary feel here, so you can add to your existing songs furniture and a pleasant mix of old and new that gels well. The British, always interesting, bizarre things from their travels in India and the East room so we put a background to provide the finest personal touch. "

Politician and also diary writer Alan Clark could ever describe damningly Michael Heseltine as the kind of man his own furniture to buy, but Lady Astor had no truck with this guy snobbery.

"Times have changed, people take a real pleasure to their homes, even homes where the family can be for families lived. The important thing is to be bold and demonstrate individualism rather than a slave to fashion. "

After leaving school with no qualifications - "I went to a French school and a boarding school, which was very comfortable, but not even a library so there were no books to read" - Lady Astor opened a jewelry store in the name her daughter, Annabel Jones, in 1967. Later he became a favorite at Diana, Princess of Wales Lady Astor ran. it until 2001 when it was sold to Hamilton & inches, because she wanted to focus on Oka.

His interest in high-end equipment and accessories was born when she was a vacation home was providing on the beach in Florida, and found that there was nothing available that suited his vision or budget. Together with friends Sue Jones, who the brother of Lady Astor married and Lucinda Waterhouse, whose husband is a good friend of Lady Astor's spouse, William, 4th Viscount Astor, she began to supply and design the nature of beds, cupboards and shelves, she would be happy to live.

Lady Astor and her second husband, three daughters and two son split their time between their home in Oxford and three bedroom apartments in London. Each has its own style.

"The house in the country is a bit tired and well worn, a place where dogs can sleep on the furniture and grandchildren can rampage without fear of leaving a trace on furniture cream. In the city, it is though a little more sober and elegant but still casual -. homes for life and relax in, not the toes around "

The latest addition to Lady Astor bread seven grandchildren Sam and his new daughter of David Cameron, Florence, born during the summer. "Florence is the sweetest, little more perfect person, she said." She was born by caesarean section when she was out so beautiful, rather than a little broken. I have not had time to give him a gift, but his baptism I give all my grandchildren something special, they can keep forever, even though I have not decided what will be. "

Lady Astor had a lot on his mind with the excitement of the grand opening and opportunity relationships with client contacts. The store, rather cleverly includes a den of men in the bottom floor and a wall mounted plasma screen sports, newspapers and coffee, where partners can get bored to be parked to check it's time to get out the credit card.

"We are filling the niche between Habitat and furniture designer and it's so rewarding to see how our sales have increased in recent years -. The shop is fully funded by our cash flow"

No such act of folly to detail, after all, then. Political commentators could be dark on the state of the nation, but the outlook is definitely sunny Lady Astor.

"This shop is taking Oka a whole new level, and there will be limited edition items that are not here on the site or in the smaller branches here to get even better treatment."

If the enthusiastic reception of his new shop is anything to go by, trade is indeed what customers are after. And if they carefully to stimulate the economy, change oak changing table at a time, his step-son David will probably be happy.


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