My design London: Mark Holloway

Mark Holloway, of the modern and traditional interior fittings stores Holloways of Ludlow, tells us why grey and orange are made for each other and where to find the best view in London.
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Mark Holloway, 42, is the owner of Holloways of Ludlow. The founding shop in the Shropshire town, along with five stores across London, sell his much-loved contemporary and traditional interior fittings, fixtures and hardware. He has also launched his own brand of reasonably priced lighting.

Holloway read engineering at Oxford but spent much of his childhood at his parents' Ludlow shop, which instilled in him a passion for good design. Here, Holloway tells us why grey and orange are made for each other, where to find the best view in London, and why standing in the dark in a shop in Bloomsbury is such an incredible experience.


His Master's Voice: muted grey with bright orange and "my fabulous bright red Fifties radio" are Holloway's favourite colours at home
My home
I live in a traditional Victorian terrace in Southfields, just next to Wimbledon and surrounded by local parks. I love running on Wimbledon Common at the weekend, and lunch at the Fox & Grapes on the common is always fun, especially in the tennis season when there's a great buzz about the place.

Home colours
I love muted, soft greys mixed with splashes of bright orange, yellow or red. Farrow & Ball's Charleston Grey is the perfect foil to my fabulous bright red Fifties radio and three yellow Lampe Gras ceiling lights that hang over the kitchen island.


Favourite home memorabilia: Holloway's planetarium, bought in Mevagissey 15 years ago

Home memorabilia
A planetarium I bought in Mevagissey 15 years ago is such a perfectly engineered object. You turn it and the earth orbits the sun and the moon orbits the earth. It's hard to believe they were standard issue in Forties and Fifties classrooms.

My escape
The House of St Barnabas in Soho is the perfect place for a quiet drink or to catch up with friends. The club is a charity that helps the homeless find work through its Employment Academy, and has had a fabulous makeover - it's so trendy.

Best restaurant
For a Friday night treat Kerbisher & Malt in the Shepherd's Bush Road is hard to beat. I love it as much for its clean-cut interior, chunky marinestyle wall lights and white metro tiles as for its delicious, sustainably caught fish and chips, which you order at the counter.


Secret shop:
So Sottsass plates, right, inspired by the late visionary Italian architect and designer, Ettore Sottsass, from Darkroom in Bloomsbury, which sells postmodern products

Secret shop
I love Darkroom in Lamb's Conduit Street, Bloomsbury, with its fantastic dark interior and intriguing mix of objects. Just being in there is worth the experience. I particularly like Rockman & Rockman's eye-catching geometric parquetry side tables, made in east London. But it's full of amazing things.

Favourite museum
Walking through the National Portrait Gallery with a glass of champagne in hand on one of their late Thursday openings, before heading up to the top-floor restaurant for dinner and to admire the spectacular views past Nelson's Column and the London Eye, is a great way of "leaving" the capital and going somewhere calm.

Most coveted design object
A pair of Upsala-Ekeby "Paprika" vases. I recently sourced one at so now I need to find its twin. A good pair can cost as much as £1,500.


Eye-catching: a geometric parquetry side table, left, by Rockman & Rockman, from Darkroom in Bloomsbury. Favourite designer: GS Pendant lights by Tom Kirk, right, are "mesmerising"

My favourite designer
Lighting designer Tom Kirk creates beautiful installations. My favourite design is the GS Pendant. It's made up of hundreds of pieces of glass of different shapes which create a truly beautiful, mesmerising light and is also strangely reminiscent of being back at school, learning about titration in chemistry lessons.

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