Cath Kidston in Kingston

Every issue, we visit one of Surrey's most exciting interior design shops, and this time round Janet Donin takes a stroll into the wonderful world of the Cath Kidston store in Kingston

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine February 2009Every issue, we visit one of Surrey's most exciting interior design shops, and this time round Janet Donin takes a stroll into the wonderful world of the Cath Kidston store in Kingston

Name of store: Cath Kidston Address: 10 Thames Street, Kingston upon Thames KT1 1PE Tel: 0208 546 6760

The Owner... Cath Kidston opened her first shop in Holland Park 15 years ago, selling vintage fabrics, wallpapers and brightly coloured junk furniture. Drawing on her love of traditional country house style, she gradually introduced her own prints and products. Her initial success came in the unlikely form of her ironing board cover with its practical, quirky and distinctive floral print, which came to epitomise the Cath Kidston look. She now has three stores in the Surrey area: Kingston, Wimbledon and, most recently, the Guildford branch, which opened last November. Style... A riot of colour hits you the moment you enter the store - from the brilliant flower-patterned fabrics and the boldly-spotted china to the snazzy bed-linen and the must-have shopping bag. Everything is displayed on painted shelves or tables in keeping with the retro feel of the merchandise. There's even a stone sink and wooden drainer to display their 'Washing Line' products, which include ironing spray, washing-up liquid, gloves, fabric conditioner and so on. Specialises in... Fabrics, homewares and bed-linen are the core products, all in Cath's eye-catching primary colours and prints. Increasing in popularity are the traditional sewing kits, children's back-to-school bags and women's fashions. Best buys... For the feel-good factor, everything that brightens the kitchen is a must including the flower-sprigged aprons and the zany tea towels. Table accessories are also popular - we love the spotty mats, tablecloths and candles. Also, look out for the flower patterned Roberts radio. Worth a visit... because Cath Kidston's unique sense of style in whatever she designs is bound to put a smile on your face. Favourite product... The incredibly soft and very generously sized towels, which come in the signature flower design plus spots, stripes or stars - perfect for today's all white bathrooms.

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