At home with Pamela Flood: ‘I am a total hoarder’
For the TV presenter, it’s all about the cosy – dark floors and light walls with throws and soft fabrics
Pamela Flood in her sittingroom: ‘That’s where we all clamber together on the couch, chill out and cuddle by night.’ Photograph: Dave Meehan
Former Miss Ireland Pamela Flood is a TV presenter with a string of shows to her name including Off The Rails, Podge and Rodge and A Healthy Appetite (coming in 2018). In 2015, she opened a health-food cafe, Counter Culture, with her restaurateur husband Ronan Ryan and more recently the pair launched Good to Go on Mercer Street, which focuses on delivering healthy meals to Dubliners. She lives in Clontarf with Ronan, stepson Zach, and their three children – Elsie, Harrison and Gracie and their cat Nibbles.
Describe your interiors style
It’s all about the cosy. Dark floors and light walls with lots of throws and soft fabrics. I’m drawn to muted tones of cream and brown, which I find really soft on the eye as well as soft to touch.
What’s your favourite room?
In winter, the sittingroom because that’s where we all clamber together on the couch, chill out and cuddle by night. I also love it early in the morning as the sun streams in through a big bay window, and it’s momentarily peaceful and calm until the kids descend. In summer, the kids are banished to the back garden, which is dominated by sandpits and trampolines, bikes, toys and more toys. Sometimes the chaos of family life gets on top of me but there’s this great quote that I live by when I’m on the brink of a mummy meltdown, “right now is the past that someone in the future wishes they could get back to”.
Who is your favourite designer?
I love Peter O’Brien’s style. I don’t go for high-fashion pieces anymore. The older I get the more I can’t understand why everyone wants to look like everyone else. Find your own sense of style. Invest in classic, beautiful clothes that work for you, not what’s trending. Most days, I’m in my jeans and trainers but when I do get a chance to dress up I’d rather feel elegant than fashionable. When it comes to interiors, I’m a big fan of the Caroline Donnelly homewares collection for Dunnes Stores. It’s elegant and fun and looks far more expensive than it is.
What’s your favourite gadget?
It’s our Lacanche cooker. Ronan, being a chef, insisted on it. It’s a pretty huge, industrial-looking unit for a domestic kitchen, but I couldn’t imagine going back to a regular stove after using it. We test all the recipes for the restaurant out on it, as the same one is used in there, so the timings and results are the same.
Do you collect anything?
I collect everything and anything and am a total hoarder, which has gotten even more out of control since motherhood. Our attic looks like a bomb went off in it. I don’t like throwing things out as I’m quite practical and think there will always be a use someday for everything. There’s the sentimental attachment too, as I feel my stuff connects me to the past and to good memories. Ronan despairs over my hoarding – it’s the bane of his life, so I trying to get it under control.
Any interior turn-offs?
Ironically, I can’t bear to see shelves full of clutter on display. Clutter must be out of sight. It would depress me to constantly have to look at a mess like that but it thrills me to have time to go through it when I can. At least I have the good grace to keep all my stuff in boxes or up in the attic.
Who is your favourite artist?
I love our Anne Madden painting of Icarus because it’s so beautiful and the colours are so vibrant and I’ve always been enthralled by the fable behind it too. My favourite artist is the sculptor Patrick O’Reilly and we’re lucky enough to have a few of his stunning pieces. My favourite though, without a doubt, is a little bronze bear.
Any tips for keeping organised and tidy?
I have zero tips for keeping the place tidy with small kids. They literally walk behind you undoing any cleaning-up efforts, while laughing at you. Only tidy when they’re asleep.