Interview: Jo Littlefair

Five minutes with...

Goddard Littlefair is a London-based, luxury interior design house with international expertise and a global portfolio, established in 2012 by Martin Goddard and Jo Littlefair. The company specialises in hotel, hospitality and spa projects and are currently working on some of London’s most high-profile residential developments. We recently chatted with Jo Littlefair, who is one half of the dynamic design duo.

Tell us a bit about yourself and how you became an interior designer?

I was very fortunate to have an inspiring textile design teacher at school. I love 3D art and the touch and feel of fabrics and even though I started with an arts foundation year, I found my way back to textiles and ended up doing my degree in textile design. I’ve also always been a very curious person and I wanted to see the world, so, after my degree I travelled and worked abroad for 18 months, including a stretch on a superyacht in the Mediterranean, which made a huge impression on me. I was fascinated by the yacht’s interiors; by the perfectly-bespoke 3D design that fitted exactly into each space and the sheer quality of the fabrics and finishes. Once I got back to the UK, I knew I wanted to pursue a career in design and fell almost immediately into the world of FF&E, which brought furniture, textiles, layouts, style and styling all together in one place.

What words would you use to describe your signature style and does it vary to Martin’s?

I would say I lean naturally to a more feminine, lighter palette, whereas Martin has a strong link to the shapes and lines of art deco, having worked on incredible spaces like the Four Seasons Gresham Palace in Budapest. Where we meet is in a layered look, where metals, timbers and fabrics come together seamlessly with plays on depth, texture and authenticity.

Where do you look for inspiration?

Everywhere and anywhere, but especially when I travel. It’s not just about seeing different things, it’s because you’re freed from everyday patterns and stresses and your thought patterns are cut loose as a result. I find when I travel that my mind very naturally wanders down new creative paths.

What trends do you think will be big in 2018?

The drive for authentic stories and interesting narratives is behind everything we do and are asked for at the moment and I can’t see that going away. Everything has to contain at least some filtered sense of history and context and that can only be a good thing. Craftsmanship is another key driver. People really like to see and know about how furniture, textiles and accessories have been shaped by the human hand.

You recently used our Chevron Bone fabric, can you tell us a bit about the project and how it was used?

On our very latest project – the designs for 215 apartments for a highly prestigious new Chartered Land residential development in the heart of Dublin – we are creating a range of apartments, from 1, 2 and 3-bed apartments to penthouses, as well as a 600 sq m marketing suite to show some of the apartments to buyers at full-scale. Although the overall look is contemporary and layered, with a particularly Dublin feel to the fabrics, including linens and fabrics with a tactile finish. Chevron Bone was perfect for that remit.

Can you tell us a bit about the projects you’re currently working on?

Yes, of course. Our newest projects include a refurbishment of the brasserie dining space within the RAC Club on Pall Mall; a new restaurant at the 11, Cadogan Gardens Hotel; apartment designs for One Park Drive, the new luxury residential development by Canary Wharf within a circular tower by architects Herzog & de Meuron; the second phase of our bedroom designs for Gleneagles; a ground-breaking health and wellness clinic for One Stop Doctors and a new hotel for the Principal brand in Edinburgh.

Finally, what is your favourite fabric from Chase Erwin?

I love velvets and silks, Chase Erwin’s Diva is a really great silk. Such a wonderful colour palette and quality - just gorgeous!

Thank you Jo for taking the time to chat with us, we adore your aesthetic and so look forward to working with you again soon. CE X