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04.30.2017
C.   /   Articles & Interviews   /   0 Comments

Rosamund sat down with Architectural Design to discuss how she restored her London home.

Rosamund Pike made her screen debut two decades ago, but it was her appearance in the 2014 film Gone Girl that made her a household name. Perhaps that’s why the 38-year-old English actress still possesses such an intense aura of privacy—it wasn’t until relatively recently that the public was clamoring to know every little detail of her life. Pike’s primary residence is still in London, where she lives with her partner, businessman Robie Uniacke, and their two sons, Solo and Atom. While in New York City to attend the fifth annual For the Love of Cinema event in support of the Tribeca Film Festival, hosted by IWC Schaffhausen (Pike is a brand ambassador for the luxury watch company), the actress sat down with AD to discuss the renovation of the 19th-century Georgian home she shares with her family in London.

Architectural Digest: Where did you start with your renovation?
Rosemund Pike: My house was built in 1830, as a lot of London houses are. It’s a terraced house, late Georgian period. Even before I did the inside, I restored the outside of it because I felt the love of the building was very important. I did the façade and really explored the techniques that would have been used during that period. I wanted to clean the bricks, but not to a point of modernity. So, we used spray soot to keep some of that color. We really looked into techniques for filling in the grouting also. Also, the quality of the grout we used didn’t make it too white, so it blended in. The same for all the plaster work—we made sure it was the right tenor and that it was Georgian period. And we used the colors available at that time. Inside we have very dark rooms, but we offset them with furniture and pictures.

AD: When renovating and decorating your home, did you use anything particularly special?
RP: I reclaimed the pine floor from a house in Belgrave, England, that was being completely redone—it’s in our bedroom. It’s these old wide boards that are so different, but I find them so beautiful. I also just recently bought a pen work table, where they used to do black, fine penmanship, with black drawing all over it. It’s an exquisite thing from the 1820s.

AD: So, you really wanted to keep a sense of the time period of the home.
RP: Yes. I have Gainsborough chairs, but we put modern fabrics on them. I don’t keep everything the same. We have a lot of shocking pink in our house—and neon. There is this sort of dialectic going on between old and new. A lot of homes in London have shutters that fold back, but in our bedroom we have these very unusual ones that slide back into the wall. The window is the full proportions of a Georgian window, and the shutters went back so brilliantly that we had a false
wall put in our drawing room and found a craftsman who could build those same shutters.

AD: You’ve obviously spent a lot of time in the U.S. in addition to your home in London. What are the design differences between the two?
RP: The United Kingdom is much more comfortable with the eclectic. The Crosby Street Hotel, where I’m staying in New York City, has the mismatched fabrics—that’s very English, not being frightened of pattern or fearing colors. I think it comes from this idea of inheriting stuff like your mother’s chair, not recovering it and putting out some modern things. I find that American design tends to be a lot more brown. Unless you grew up in the 1970s in London—there was a lot of brown in my house. We had a brown car and a yellow car, so I’m actually still very fond of yellow because of the car. I wasn’t born in the 1970s, but our cars weren’t very new.

AD: Do you bring any comforts from home with you when you’re on set?
RP: I do, but less so now that I have children. You can’t have 18 pieces of luggage. I used to take blankets and throws, but now I don’t. I have one friend, a hairdresser in the film industry, who travels with a great big trunk filled with ornaments, bed linens, throws, and carpets. It’s wonderful because it makes everything feel like home. Now, it’s just toys and remote control cars, skateboards, bicycles, and scooters.

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