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Ahm House – the perfect setting for Deirdre Dyson’s Plumage Rug Collection

Our Stylist Louisa Grey works closely with Deirdre as soon as a rug collection is designed to find exactly the right locations for our collection photo shoots and this year one of them stood out, Ahm House.

Deirdre Dyson Exclusive Carpets and Rugs Plumes

The house was originally built by Danish Structural Engineer Povl Ahm, a partner of Ove Arup, who worked on some of last Century’s most significant buildings.

It’s Architect was also a Dane, Jørn Utzon, who’s most prestigious building was the Sydney Opera House.

Photo from themodernhouse.com

Arup also worked on the Opera House and the two men met during the early stages of its design, culminating in Ahm asking Utzon to design his home which he built in Harpenden, Hertfordshire from 1961-3.  It was to be Utzon’s only completed project in the UK.

This low-lying Pavilion of concrete and brick unfolds to dramatically reveal floor to ceiling glass bringing the secluded, mature gardens into the classic mid-Century space.  In the words of architecture critic Hugh Pearman “Probably the best Modern house in the world”.

As Ahm’s family grew, a later extension was added by Ulrik Plesner in association with Christopher Beaver Associates in 1972-4.

Now Grade II listed, from the street the house gives nothing away, dominated by its car port (and the later garage which formed part of the Plesner extension)

Photo from themodernhouse.com

Ahm’s widow sold the house after his death in 2005 and it was sold again in 2016.  The new owners wanted to maintain the character of the home and employed Architects Coppin Dockray to work on the interiors which have been sensitively restored.  The restoration went on to win the Wallpaper* Design Award 2019 for Best Remastered Building.

Fast forward to Autumn last year and our shoot which featured Deirdre’s PLUMES, HARLEQUIN, MANDARIN, BURLESQUE and FEATHER BOUND rugs – Deirdre and Edison knew something special would unfold when they attended the shoot at the Ahm House and the finished photographs by Michael Sinclair are testament to that.

Deirdre Dyson Exclusive Carpets and Rugs Quills
Deirdre Dyson Exclusive Carpets and Rugs Mandarin
Deirdre Dyson Exclusive Carpets and Rugs Harlequin
Deirdre Dyson Exclusive Carpets and Rugs Burlesque

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NOS AMIS ARGILE

Deirdre is a huge fan of the Parisian paint brand Argile, and has used Argile paints in her interiors for several years.

As a colourist, the ‘trueness’ of a hue on a given surface is key to Deirdre , and this quality of colour is paramount to Argile.

Founded in 2006, Argile was born of the encounter between an entrepreneur and paint expert, Jean Frédéric Nothomb, and a colour specialist, Pierre Bonnefille. The idea was to offer a premium range of paint products to architects, decorators, set designers and all those who have an interest in decoration, whether professionals or private individuals.

Their philosophy is to draw inspiration from the colours of nature and their challenge to manufacture a range of the highest quality colours on an industrial scale, coupled with exceptional service.

Argile take inspiration from the sky, sea and landscape, Argile translates as ‘clay’ referring to organic nature of their colour inspiration as well as the raw materials of their paint.

Argile’s palette of 184 glorious colours work in harmony to create an exceptional finish.

Argile paints are now found in historic properties, such as the Louvre and the Grand Palais in Paris, as well as luxury hotels such as the Connaught in London and the Hoxton in Amsterdam, and in the interior design of countless traditional and contemporary homes.

When it came to designing our stand for this years’ Maison et Objet interiors exhibition, Argile’s colour chart was Deirdre’s first port of call, from which she selected the perfect backdrop for each of the eight new rug designs on display.

The earth colours of ‘grivele’ worked perfectly with QUILLS and FEATHER BOUND, ‘gres’ provided the perfect backdrop to the magestic EAGLE , ‘bleu burlington’ brought out the turqouise feather tips in PLUMES and also provided a foil for the vibrancy of GOLDEN PHEASANT and BURLESQUE, whilst ‘ardoise bleue’ set off the stunning tones of MANDARIN and HARLEQUIN.

Detail of GOLDEN PHEASANT with Argile’s ‘gres’ on the wall behind.

Argile’s ‘gres’ was the perfect background for EAGLE.

Detail of FEATHER BOUND with Argile’s ‘grevele’ on the wall behind.

PLUMES with Argile’s ‘bleu burlington’ on the wall behind.

We feel a real affinity with Argile, both companies are small brands dedicated to creating the highest quality product, providing exceptional service and ultimately share a love of colour.

In January whilst preparing for Maison, Edison popped by Argile’s fabulous headquarters in Paris to to meet the team and collect the paint for our Maison stand, a shrine to colour!

Learn more about the Argile story here