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Experience

My gorgeous rainbow space

Zandra Rhodes's contribution to our Stay Home collecting project

My home is the rainbow penthouse – on top of the Fashion and Textile Museum which I founded!

I live alone but my studio is downstairs so I am usually surrounded by my staff!

I also have students who come to live in when they take up an internship with me.

Obviously things are a little different at the moment with the virus and I am all alone!

Take part in our Stay Home collecting project

© Bridie O'Sullivan, courtesy of Zandra Rhodes Studio © Bridie O'Sullivan, courtesy of Zandra Rhodes Studio
I have a view of the shard and London's Bermondsey

In what ways has the coronavirus pandemic changed the way you use your home?

I have never spent so much time in one place! I am finding myself spending more time upstairs in my penthouse, doing my work up here in the sunlight and the warmth of the spring sun is so peaceful! I suppose you could say that my home has become much more multifunctional since the pandemic hit.

How do you feel about your home? How have these feelings changed?

I have fallen in love with my gorgeous rainbow space all over again and my fellow friends and artists work that surrounds me (painting and pottery I collect) such as Carol McNicol, Kate Malone, Andrew Logan and Duggie Fields!

© Bridie O'Sullivan, courtesy of Zandra Rhodes Studio © Bridie O'Sullivan, courtesy of Zandra Rhodes Studio
It is a bright, open plan space – with plenty of windows and a terrace that curves around the size of the space.

How do you feel about your home? How have these feelings changed?

Somehow through the phone I feel closer to my friends than ever before! The phone never stops ringing at the moment I am having to carry it everywhere with me!

What do you appreciate most about your home? What do you find frustrating?

I love sitting at the computer and working in the penthouse but I am aware of the fabulous plants on my terrace – watching the sun on my hydrangeas against the vibrant Frida Kahlo blue wall – I look forward to watering them in the evening. I suppose you could say that I find it frustrating that I do not have a gardener to lift and prune the plants!

© Bridie O'Sullivan, courtesy of Zandra Rhodes Studio © Bridie O'Sullivan, courtesy of Zandra Rhodes Studio

How has lockdown changed your habits or routines at home?

'What is life so full of care, we have no time to stand and stare' – suddenly now I have time that I have never had before in my life! I am painting and finding time to just...breathe.

© Bridie O'Sullivan, courtesy of Zandra Rhodes Studio © Bridie O'Sullivan, courtesy of Zandra Rhodes Studio

How is your sense of home affected by your neighbours or those living nearby?

I actually am not aware of my neighbours as I have a high wall! I am surrounded by my magical terrace and only on Thursday evenings when the neighbours are clapping and cheering from their windows for our NHS I am aware that I am in a busy street – I ring my very loud dinner bell out of the window to show my gratitude!

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