Inside a UK Home with Palm Trees, Pineapples and Leopard Print

published May 2, 2018

Inside a UK Home with Palm Trees, Pineapples and Leopard Print

published May 2, 2018
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Home Type
Square feet
Sq ft

Name: Steve and Beth Parnell
Location: Manchester, UK
Years lived in: 2 years, owned

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“Our home incorporates our love of pattern and color and also retro style—I like to call our interior style Eclectic Modern Retro!” describes Beth Parnell, founder of Dotty Dishes. “When we moved from London to Manchester two years ago, this was the only house we viewed. We knew straight away what a lovely home it could be and the gorgeous period features such as the stained glass, original wooden floorboards and picture rails really sold it to us.”

“We have really put our own interior stamp on the house and I love the fact that you get a clear sense of our style as soon as you walk through the door with pineapple wallpaper, a snow leopard stair runner, retro furniture and lots of fun homewares and artwork. It’s very us and that’s exactly what I feel your home should be. I work from home so it’s also important the space I spend most of my week in is somewhere I love and am happy to spend time in every day.

I think my favorite room in the house is probably the living room as it’s bright and spacious but also really cozy, particularly when the log burner is on! Guests always love our dining room though—I think it’s the appeal of the retro boat bar!”

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: I love pattern and color and am drawn to anything tropical such as palm trees and pineapples and I have a long-standing obsession with leopard print! My husband and I have always loved the 1960s and we incorporate that era into our home with our retro furniture and homeware.

Inspiration: I get inspired by lots of things for interiors—Instagram, hotels, restaurants, Pinterest and friends’ houses. I can pick up inspiration from small things such as the way a shelf is styled, a colour scheme or a mixture of patterns and I often take ideas and try to work them into our own home.

Favorite Element: The original 1930s stained glass in the house is one of the reasons that made us fall in love with it. It adds such character to the property and looks beautiful when the sun shines through it. The doors and windows were all painted in magnolia (the UK version of “builder’s beige”) when we bought the house but we knew painting them dark would bring out the color in the stained glass even more and the dark grey works really well.

Biggest Challenge: We knew we didn’t want to keep the dark maple kitchen cupboards as they were as they looked really dated and didn’t work with the light grey Corian worktop and dark grey flooring. It was going to take a long time to paint the doors ourselves so we did some research and found a local tradesman who sprayed units. It took a long time to take the cupboard doors off and put them back on and we had to create a coded diagram to remember which went back where! But it was worth it in the end. The kitchen looks brand new and it cost just over £800. We used a matte finish Valspar paint that we color-matched to Farrow Farrow and Ball Valspar Down Pipe color match for the cupboard doors, which has a matte finish and is really durable.

Proudest DIY: This has to be our hallway as we have given it such a makeover! When we bought the house it had brown carpet on the stairs and floors and there was a lot of exposed wood and magnolia walls. We pulled all of the carpet up and sanded back the floorboards and we were lucky they were in such good condition, apart from being dark with dirt and dust! With exposed original wooden flooring, Farrow & Ball Down Pipe woodwork, which really brings out the original 1930s stained glass, blue walls, pineapple wallpaper and snow leopard stair runner, it now has such a wow factor.

Biggest Indulgence: I think it has to be my Barneby Gates pineapple wallpaper—it’s quite expensive per roll and we have used it in a big space and needed quite a few rolls for our hallway. I loved it as soon as I saw it and knew I wanted to use it in part of our home that I would see every day and the hallway is the perfect spot. Pineapples are also a symbol of hospitality which I like as it’s the first room in the house anyone sees when they visit!

Best Advice: I think my advice would be to do what makes you happy in your home. Don’t listen too much to other people or follow trends too closely—you know what you like and it’s you who has to live in the space and your home should make you smile!



Hallway – Hemsley at Homebase – Yenston Sky / woodwork, Farrow & Ball – Down Pipe / wallpaper, Barneby Gates – Pineapple

Living Room – Dulux – Warm Pewter / woodwork, Crown – Sunday School / wallpaper, Matthew Williamson – Tropicana Metallic Silver & Yellow

Kitchen – Dulux – Polished Pebble / woodwork, Farrow & Ball – Down Pipe

Dining Room – Crown – Smoked Glass / woodwork, Farrow & Ball – Ammonite / wallpaper, Matthew Williamson – Tropicana Dark Grey, Neutral & Metallic Bronze

Office 1 – Crown Metallic – Copper / Farrow & Ball – Calamine / woodwork, Farrow & Ball – Down Pipe

Office 2 – Crown Period – Pencil Pot / woodwork, Helmsley – Lovington Flint

Snug – Crown Period – Steam Engine / wallpaper, Albany – Big Cat Ink

Bedroom 1 – Crown – Soft Shadow / woodwork, Farrow & Ball – Ammonite / wallpaper, Albany – Miami Coral

Guest room – Helmsley – Yenston Tide / woodwork, Farrow & Ball – Ammonite / wallpaper, Arthouse – Copacabana Gold

Bathroom – Dulux – Willow Tree / wallpaper, Matthew Williamson – Sunbird

Armchair – Ikea
Footstool — Ikea
Coffee Table — Wayfair
Rug — La Redoute
Ceiling Lamp — Habitat
Floor Lamp — Wayfair
Pineapple Lamp — Amara
Pom Pom Cushions — George
Stone Roses print — Pete Mckee
Noel Gallagher print — Stanley Chow
The Beatles print — Stanley Chow
Tiger Cushion – Abigail Ahern (sold out)
Table Lamps – Debenhams (sold out)
Baskets – Very (sold out)
Sideboard, Side Table and Bar Cart – retro

Dining Table — John Lewis
Dining Chairs — Fusion Living
Pineapple Lamp — Laura Ashley
Wall Lamp — Made
Rug — Ikea
Side Table – Sainsbury’s Home (sold out)
Ceiling Lamp — Ebay
Record Player – Crosley (old)
Sideboard, Bar, Peacock Chair and Record Cabinet – retro

Wall shelves – Ikea
Cookbook Shelves — Ikea
Peg Board — Ikea
Placemats — House of Hackney
Jars and Teapot — Orla Kiely
Chairs — Ebay
Dining Table and Bar Cart – retro

Rug – La Redoute
Bedside Tables — CFS Furniture
Dressing Table — CFS Furniture
Stool – Kartell
Bedside Letter Lights — The Word Is Love
Palm Tree Cushion — Elizabeth Scarlett
Pineapple Cushion — Matthew Williamson at Debenhams
Picture Ledge — Ikea
Bed – Ikea (old)
Ceiling Lamp – Made (sold out)
Floor Lamp – Aldi (old)
Rattan Chair and Magazine Rack – retro

Leaf Cushions — H&M Home
Flamingo Cushion — George Home
Artwork — North 6 Graphic Design
Pineapple Lamp – Homebase (sold out)
Bed – Sainsbury’s Home (old)
Rocking Chairs – second hand
Bedside Tables, Peacock Chair and Side Tables (old)

Shelving Unit — Wayfair
Cactus Basket — Seat Threads
Mirror — Dunelm
Plant Hanger — Bloomingville at Trouva
Towels — Christy

Thanks, Beth and Steve!

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