Through the keyhole: in Pembury

PUBLISHED: 21:22 24 May 2014

The elegant living room

The elegant living room


This elegant Victorian house contrasts original Arts and Crafts features with modern touches

Nicky Todd’s Victorian house, Highcroft in Pembury, is a beautifully proportioned, elegant family home.

The 19th-century Arts and Crafts-inspired house has been lovingly restored with a modern twist to suit her family’s different needs. Nicky lives here with her husband, Jeremy, and their two teenage children, Grace, 18 and Henry, 13.

Her profession as a wedding and portrait photographer is evident throughout 
the three-storey property; there are 
photo canvases and family pictures throughout the house.

Nicky has taken great care in decorating her home and has a natural eye for detail. She has created the perfect atmosphere 
for entertaining friends, as well as relaxing with her family and pet labrador Hugo.

The decor throughout contrasts original Arts and Crafts features with modern style. Nicky and Jeremy began their creative journey with Highcliff in 2007.

Although the house was quite dark 
and gloomy when they bought it, the couple saw its potential and set to work to introduce a lighter contemporary character.

They have achieved this with the use 
of neutral colour schemes accentuated with the occasional bold decoration.


When entering the house it is impossible to miss the striking white spiralling staircase and feature tiles which are characteristic of the period. Nicky has added vintage-style lamps, a stunning chandelier and large mirror to reflect these classic features.

Dining room

Continuing the neutral colour scheme 
into the dining room maximises the sense of space and light, accentuated by the feature windows and crystal chandelier.

The walls are painted in ‘Downpipe’ by Farrow and Ball, the perfect period partner.

Sitting room

Nicky opted for warm, red tones to create a cosy, welcoming feel to their living room. The fireplace is central to the room and the family love spending time here. Kitchen

Before renovating the house Nicky 
and Jeremy were unhappy with the 
kitchen layout so they reassessed the space, increased the opening between the 
kitchen and dining room and installed an island in the middle of the kitchen.

There are doors which can separate the two rooms but when open, this becomes a fabulous entertaining space.


The master bedroom decor is dramatic 
but there is also a fairytale quality about this design which feels calm and tranquil after a long day.


The contemporary bathroom with 
its large window and mirrored wall is 
perfectly balanced with the clever choice 
of muted grey tiles. n

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