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Every Room in This Edwardian Home Is a Different Color


Sophia Cook knows how to trust her instincts. The day after she met her now husband Simon (who goes by Cookie), she told him she was going to marry him. And the moment the two of them walked into a rundown Edwardian home in the Croydon section of South London, she knew it had to be theirs. “As soon as we walked through the door, we became quite invested,” she recalls. “We were saying ‘Oh, maybe the children could have their bedroom here.’ And when we walked away, I knew that [Cookie] would try everything to get the house.”

Despite it being in need of TLC, despite having an outstanding bid on another home, and despite Sophia being six months pregnant with their first child at the time, the couple found a way to make it happen. 

Cookie and Sophia with children Alfred and Edith in their cheerful kitchen, which is painted in Matterhorn and Botanical Green by Sanderson. Cookie painted the vintage canvas behind the red chair by George Smith, and the light fixture is from Made.com. 

Helen Cathcart

Because the house was in probate and there was much left behind from the previous owner—“there was still fish in the fridge, the kettle was still hot,” as Sophia tells it—the couple planned to take things one step at a time. “We were going to do it ourselves and do it slowly,” she adds. Their plans were accelerated exponentially once they applied to and were accepted by a home renovation show in the U.K., George Clark’s Old House New Home. Demanding production timelines and supply chain schedules meant that key design choices had to be made quickly. Now, Sophia, who was project managing the renovation and dealing with contractors, had to trust Cookie and his creative instincts.   

It’s hard not to notice that each room of the house is painted in a different rich color—one of Cookie’s key decisions, and one that was dictated by the theme of day and night. “The idea came from the basic ground floor of the house, where you spend most of the time during the day,” Cookie, a creative director, explains. “Then, the first floor is where everyone sleeps at night. The way we divided the two floors was we basically took the color spectrum as a line divided in two. The ground floor of the house is made up of the first half of the spectrum, which is all the kind of earthy colors like oranges, yellows, greens, really soft colors.”


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