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My space: Mimi Berry, handbag designer

Handbag designer Mimi Berry shows us inside her East London home

I live in a 1930s maisonette in East London.


Mimi Berry at home in East London

It was the area, which I knew well, that attracted me: it’s really friendly, has three lovely parks – and I wanted to be able to walk to work. I stalked the building for two years, putting adverts in the letterboxes in case someone wanted to move. I gutted it when I moved in. It’s small, but I love it.

The first time I walked into this room it was late autumn, and the light through the window was wonderful – it is bright all year round. It really lifts my spirits. The living space has evolved a lot – I’m forever moving things around, especially the prints and illustrations; I think the simple lines in the room show them off really well.

My taste has definitely changed: I used to have more antiquey pieces, but they didn’t look right in here, and I find that a lot of new ”modern” pieces aren’t very well made. My furniture falls in between: I really admire mid-century Danish design.

I don’t like clutter – that sounds bonkers, because to some people this room seems pretty full, but there was order in its design.


This cupboard and the yellow one on the other side of the wall were made by a friend of mine, from packing crates. The images around it are my mood board, so they’re changing all the time


The green ‘papercut’ is by Rob Ryan. I’d saved up as much as I could before going to his studio, and he said I could take whatever I liked. I chose this piece because it reminds me of home, and going for walks with my parents. The bold prints on the other wall were the posters for an exhibition hosted by Dazed and Confused magazine


Lighting is a very important ingredient for me. I collect lamps from all over the place. This is from Brick Lane; the one on the table came from eBay. I have several original Conran 1960s ‘Mac lamps’ and Herbert Terry pieces


I love the simplicity of these old chairs. They are the stackable ones that were in every office and school in the Sixties. I got them from a vintage place in Hackney. The chair against the desk is a lovely, curvy Danish design – I had to save up for that one!


This cowhide came from a car boot sale in Chiswick a couple of years ago. I made the cushion that goes with it. People are often surprised that I don’t have many textiles in here – I’m surrounded by them at work, so it’s a nice change of scenery when I get home

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