After styling the Traditionally British Home and presenting at the Ideal Super Theatre, we knew that Linda Barker would have some great stories to share from the Ideal Home Show. We managed to catch up with the lady herself after the show was over, to find out her top five moments.
On the phone for a quick press interview & unpacking the wine coolers – which have just arrived! 22 mins to go… pic.twitter.com/cWOMJ96ciC
— Linda Barker (@ReallyLinda) March 18, 2016
1. Getting the traditional show house to look great meant we had to pull out all the stops.
It takes only a week to get the house ready, that includes building it on site too! It’s a heck of a lot of work and everyone works really hard and complaining doesn’t get anyone – anywhere. I’m used to rooms coming together quickly after working on shows like 60 minute makeovers but a whole house takes it to another level.
2. Like most things in life, I love the pre-prep.
Getting ready for a party can be the really fun bit… Getting the dining table ready and the house all pretty is great fun. And of course pre-dinner drinks – you get the idea. I loved watching how all the stands started to take shape a couple of days before the show opened. Staircases being built, huge gazebos being lifted in, swimming pools landing in position. It’s epic to watch it all taking shape.
3. Looking out over the show.
At the end of a day, standing on the first floor balcony overlooking the show under the glass domed roof designed and built by Henry Edward Cole, at Olympia is amazing. It’s a wonderful piece of architecture and the show houses looked incredible dwarfed by the enormous roof
4. On the last day of the show the crowds were at full capacity.
It made me giggle as I literally had to pick my pathway through the crowds to the presentation theatre. On more than one occasion I was swamped by a wave of magic mops, bought by an enthusiastic audience who couldn’t resist a double mop bargain.
5. Team spirit.
There’s nothing quite like it when the odds are staked against you. Who’d have thought three entire houses and a massive show such as ours could be built and decorated so glamorously in only a week. I applaud everyone who made a monumental effort to get the show opened on time, and who made it look effortless as soon as the first doors open, bang on time.