How the country got stylish

19 images

The Pop Store design team’s eclectic take on the rural idyll in the heart of Oxfordshire The address given for Sam Clapp and Brian MacShane’s south Oxfordshire home leads to a stout panelled door in the façade of a white-painted cottage, in a row where gardens are carefully tended and voile curtains neatly pleated. We check the address; this is not what we had expected. The pair are the creative force behind brand development and design agency Pop Store, known as a rebel in the retail market. Their company designed the wacky headquarters for energy drink company Red Bull, and took the temporary, pop-up shop phenomenon out of London and on the road to Birmingham, Leicester and all points north. So a picturesque 250-year-old cottage is not what one would have imagined they would call home. The only hint that something might be a little different is the irregular flashing of coloured lights through a window. As the door opens, the lights become brighter, and a large, arrow-shaped neon funfair sign with the word “Thrills” comes into view. It sits on top of a sizeable haberdasher’s cabinet. “It was bought in Hoxton and intended for the main bedroom, but was too big to go up the stairs,” says Clapp. Writer Vinny Lee -

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