top of page

Go Dark with | Home shoot

So 2 weeks ago I had a wonderful team from in the house to shoot photography and video as our home was chosen as their "House of the Month". Wait, what!!? I was completely shocked when I got the call and jumped to the opportunity with no questions asked. I love MADE and have featured their products numerous times on this blog. So if they wanted to shoot at our home, I was super keen to let them in!

The whole theme in this shoot was Dark Interiors and how to style them. If you've been snooping around my home for some time you know that I really love a dark-themed room, like my office, dining room and living room. The husband's office was totally painted black (Farrow&Ball Railings) for some time and only recently converted to a lighter version (with a 2016 wallpaper again by Farrow & Ball).

Have you ever wondered what goes one behinds the scenes on a photo shoot? Well, stick around and I will tell you. It's not all pretty, and it can get really tiring, especially if you are the host. The thing is that for a home the size of ours, where all the rooms were expected to be shot, there's lot of tiding up involved. Like 2 DAYS OF TIDING UP to be precise.

So by the time the photographer gets in, you're knackered. Oh, and don't anyone dare make a mess over the next couple days because this is a perfectly tidy home just as you see in the photos. Yeah, right. I gave it exactly 3 days before we'd look like we'd been bombarded.

DAY 1 - Photography


Just before 9am Anna Batchelor, photographer extraordinaire, arrives with her assistant Georgia. Out come all the lights, cameras, batteries. Queue nervous me. Anna's most recent work was in Elle Decoration Country. How does my home fair to others? And more importantly, is there enough light? By the way you can see more of Anna's work on this website.

We're good with light, says Anna, and I am relieved as we have not seen the sun in, like, ages. I recall my conversation with Holly from who arranged the whole thing: "We really like that it's dark and moody". I hope it's not all a big blop of darkness, I think to myself but then I am reassured as Anna does not set up any of her lights.

She scouts the house - I've given her AAA (Access All Areas) after I've made sure the husband is up from sleep (it is Saturday morning after all and he's had a long week) and the bedrooms aired a bit. I point out the products and then I am off to make tea and coffee. Holly Osmond-Smith from joins us and the photo shoot kicks off.

Coffee tables and bookcases are styled, cushions plumped up. I have even dusted all around. The husband is so pleased with how clean the house seems, that he proposes we have a photoshoot every month.

After we've taken photos with me and George downstairs, I pack the kid and husband and send them away. The husband is more than happy to stay out of our way and frankly, we're about to take over his office and beautify his bookcase so you can imagine her's not very pleased. When his Apple screen is removed from the desk, it's the last straw.

He grabs his keys and is out of the house before you can say Unboxed.

Shooting the dining room was fun (not). I bring out the fancy cheese and it is smelly. It's a "shoot quick and don't breathe in" for a few moments. After we finish shooting this room we break for lunch.

And eat the smelly cheese. Yum.

Have a happy thought, says Anna. I don't smile a lot, naturally. Then we crack a joke and I can barely contain myself. What am I looking at here? The garden lawn, utterly destroyed by Bella's brown patches. Photo: Anna Batchelor Photography.

DAY 2 - Video


I seriously am nervous about this one. I have a list of questions that I have already answered on paper and they will pretty much be the same but this time I have the videographer, the director, the assistant, Holly from MADE and Abbie Smith, account Director from Bespoke all looking at me while I answer those questions on camera. I am not a natural on camera. Oh. dear.

We're talking about two full days during this shoot - a whole weekend from 9 till 6.30pm. But the result was so worth it!

When you have a crew of 4-5 people, you better have food in there too. Photo shoots last for hours! And get the kid out of there if you want to finish on time. Because said kid will likely eat the food you have for the crew. It's a loose-loose situation.

And if you want to see more, read the lovely post on


Dare to go dark, the video

Interiors inspiration with Jenny Kakoudakis




Share your flare with


Whether it’s snapping a picture, giving a fresh perspective or opening doors, MADE Unboxed is about sharing real rooms and real lives - for real inspiration. You can upload pictures of your spaces, offer up your individual style sense and inspire others. Join them here.

Follow MADE on Twitter and Instagram


bottom of page