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AT HOME WITH CLASSICS; Retro-mad Gina Pierce scoured junk shops, car boot sales and eBay to give her home a very personal touch.

Byline: STEPHANIE SMITH

YOU'RE unlikely to find Gina and David Pierce shopping for furniture in DFS or Argos. When it comes to styling their home, they don't like to take the easy option.

Textile designer Gina, 46, and barrister David, 51, love styles from the 1920s to the 1970s and prefer to invest their time trawling antiques shops, charity shops, boot sales and eBay for second-hand buys.

Their home in Ealing, West London, shared with sons, Eliot, 21, and Edward,19, is an Edwardian house dating from 1916 and now, a decade after they moved in, they have finally got it exactly how they want it.

"There are so many classic designs out there that are fabulous and well made," says Gina. "All they need is a bit of love and attention and, if you're careful, they needn't be anything like as expensive as new.

"It's a case of picking it up at the right price and having it renovated or re-upholstered."

As an example, Gina highlights their sofa... an original 1920s piece which she had re-upholstered in leather. She has teamed it with a pair of Parker Knoll chairs from the 1970s, which she then covered in some of her own fabric.

"I've got a bit of a thing about armchairs which I find at junk shops, jumble sales and clearance sales," she admits. "I now have six of them, which is a bit much."

Gina has been an avid collector since she was a girl growing up in Bexhill, East Sussex. "I used to spend lots of time pottering around jumble sales and little shops, mainly collecting china.

"I started with the 1920s, and I've got several Clarice Cliffe pieces, but I've also got plenty of things from the Fifties, Sixties and Seventies too.

"I don't pay a lot of money. Twenty pounds for an item is about my maximum and as soon as something becomes wildly collectable and expensive I stop buying it and move on to something else. I've got lots of Clarice Cliffe pieces on display, but I'm running out of room.

"That's probably why I've gone on to buying silk screen, lino and digital prints, as there's still plenty of wall space left."

Gina is also keen to support new artists by choosing orginal works.

"I like houses with a bit of individual-ity, where you don't automatically know where everything is from and there are pieces no one else has. Original artwork is important, and prints needn't cost much.

"Old furniture really is worth taking a look at... it doesn't take much to make it something special."

With every room in the house finished and given the Gina touch, she's now looking forward to simply enjoying it.

"We'll addin a few more bits of china and artwork, but it's basically here to be enjoyed now. We're staying put for several years to come."

TO see more of Gina's design work, go online to www.ginapiercedesign.co.uk

A colourful quilt made by Gina's sister Jocelynne complements the 19th Century bed that Gina and David found in an antique shop for PS400. They painted it in their favourite blue, which goes with the curtains, cushions and a bag Gina designed A 1920s sofa given by Gina's late mother has been reupholstered in leather and sits alongside a mix of 1950s furniture, Gina's own prints and lots of old china. The room's focal point is from a specialist Edwardian fireplace company and the metal lamp cost PS50 in Italy

STOCKISTS

Gina Pierce Design: www.notonthehighstreet.com/ginapiercedesign Donna Wilson: www.donnawilson.com, 020 7749 0768 Farrow & Ball: www.farrow-ball.com, 01202 876141 Gail Eastwood: www.gaileastwood.co.uk 01273 882175 The Affordable Art Fair: www.affordableartfair.com, 020 8246 4848 Acme Inc: stores.ebay.co.uk/ acme-inc, 07973 402404 Coriander Stained Glass: www.corianderstainedglass.co.uk, 020 8947 7635 Graham & Green: www.grahamandgreen.co.uk, 0845 366 0400 Nettle Green: www.nettlegreen.co.uk, 0845 6522678

WHAT THEY SPENT Extension and loft conversion PS40,000 PS5,000 Bathroom New windows PS12,000 PS3,000 Decorating PS2,000 Garden Floor sanding PS1,500 External decorating PS2,000 PS65,500 TOTAL

CAPTION(S):

Decorated with Disney characters, Gina's kitchen features a 1960s Danish teak table and chairs set bought for PS600 at Camden Market in London.

An unused space under the stairs was just the place for Gina to place the console table she bought for PS90 in a sale, It shows off the old telephone she'd had for years and a circular mirror she picked up at a market.

After finding the original front door in an old garage they demolished, Gina and David had it renovated and painted in Farrow & Ball's Hague Blue.

Large French doors opening on to the garden are framed by Gina's imposing armchairs, renovated and set off by a stylish Italian designer table... a present from Gina's mum which she found at Acme Inc, a specialist store in Bexhill

Gina Pierce loves hunting down classics
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Sep 30, 2012
Words:833
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