This time of year makes me think of holiday movies which (naturally) makes me think of interiors in holiday movies. Remember how Kate Winslet’s cottage in the Holiday sent all the lady bloggers into a tizzy (almost as much as the Hamptons house in Something’s Gotta Give). That was nuts. Anyway, English country houses have always been infinitely interesting to me because they can be anything from a cottage to a manor to an estate, but all with that quirky sensibility that is uniquely English.

Well, if your taste runs more Downton Abbey than the Holiday, you are going to love The English Country House  (Vendome Press, October 2013) by James Peill, Photographs by James Fennell with a forward, incidentally, by Downton‘s creator Julian Fellowes.

The English Country House features ten properties that date back hundreds, even a thousand years and remain in the families of the original owners. As a result they are filled with rich histories, heirlooms and collections that give each a real sense of home – albeit a very grand one! Diverse architectural styles, idyllic settings, fascinating stories….. the romance of the English country house is alive and well in these homes.

It is a perfect companion to the Irish Country House also by James Peill and the Scottish Country House by James Knox, both of which are favorites in my design library.

To read more bout the English Country House and for buying options, please visit Vendome Press.

*Review copy and photographs courtesy of Vendome Press.



Elaine Comstock-leirer

Thank you for this article. I have been transported across the pond to a life in my teens. As an afterthought yoy might offer an Italian Villa piuece for those of us who sought a calmer climate.


such a skill to decorate in a certain style but not have it look contrived… i love the stereotypical english country pile for that!


Thanks so much for taking time to comment! I read every one and reply through my own comments.