Five Minutes With... Girl About House

Barbeline Lusandu

Posted on May 31 2018

Next up on our new 'Five Minutes With...' series, please welcome Sarah Mailer of interiors blog Girl About House.

An interior designer with a classic yet contemporary aesthetic, Sarah loves the finer things in life and has a penchant for period properties, sprawling country estates and gorgeous hotels. 

Barbeline, maximalist interiors, interiors blog, Girl About House, Sarah Mailer interiors


1. How did you fall in love with interior design?

Without coming across as seriously cringey, I do feel that interior design has always been a part of me and my life. Even as a seven-year-old, I would spend hours planning and rearranging my bedroom (much to my parents’ dismay). Art – in its many forms – has always been my primary passion.

2. What’s your favourite colour to bring into the home?
I am an unashamed fan of neutrals as I love their versatility and the way they work effectively with so many colours. The possibilities are vast. For a colour pop, I love the positivity of yellow (which works so effectively with all the greys) and I’m also a big fan of blues and greens. Anything that nods to nature has to be a winner for me.

3. Maximalism or minimalism?
Minimalism. For me, less is more (more or less)! Whilst I do appreciate the energy and fun of maximalism, I generally tend to pare things back. I like to style with thinking space to allow individual pieces to shine. That being said, I am a fan of print but always combine with some plains to offset the punch.

4. What’s the one piece in your home that always makes you smile?
I painted a textural triptych some years ago to hang above my 4-seater striped sofa in the lounge. I had looked for original, abstract art everywhere and nothing had been totally right, so I decided to take matters in my own hands. Whilst I do like the outcome itself, what really makes me smile is that I painted in when my now 5-year-old was a tiny baby. I remember – most vividly - throwing around plaster, acrylic paint and gold leaf in-between evening bottle feeds and tiny cuddles. For me, my artwork represents genuine mum-multi-tasking!

5. Any interiors disasters you’d care to tell us about?
I had a very ‘90s pink and turquoise floral bedroom. I was a young teen but had chosen everything myself and was immensely proud of my ‘accomplishment’. Everything was pink and turquoise – and very, very flouncy. Saying that, this look is gaining serious traction again so I should tread carefully….

6. What’s your golden rule for interior decorating, the failsafe tip you give everybody?
Plan in advance. ‘Winging it’ is all very well but there’s nothing like a creative moodboard to really set out intentions clearly. Once the look and feel has been established – which includes fabric swatches and paint sample cards – then the rest will follow.

7. What’s your interiors trends predictions for 2018?
Warm neutrals have made a welcomed come-back and look set to stay. Choose ‘greige’ over colder greys and embrace rusty hues from blush to saturated oranges and terracotta. I am also championing the return of truffle and brown shades. Watch this space…


Barbeline, maximalist interiors, interiors blog, Girl About House, Sarah Mailer interiors


A big thank you to the lovely Sarah for taking part this week - if you'd like to read more Girl About House or follow Sarah's interiors adventures, check her out on Instagram @girlabouthouse.

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