Dawna Walter set up The Holding Company in 1993 specialising in storage products and now has four shops. She has also published a book entitled `Organised Living'.

"I have an office upstairs but I actually work around the kitchen table (1) as it's much more inspiring. We have a head office but my assistant and I work from here, I think I get more work done and I quite often hold staff meetings here. A man from Feng Shui magazine was here the other day and told me that I was sitting in the wrong chair, apparently my power chair is the one opposite (2). I was just going over some proofs (3) for my book which is being published by Marks and Spencer. We are shooting a new catalogue in July so there is a lot of preparation. I get sent all sorts of samples (4) to look at for inclusion in our range. I couldn't live without my computer (5), it contains my life and my e-mail. I get print-outs of everything that has been sold in the shops (6) so I can determine what is selling well and what to re-order. My mother gave me my favourite mug (7), it has a picture of a poodle on it but I also have a real one. My candlesticks (8) were given to me by an American friend. I'm quite a heavy smoker (9) although I am thinking of swapping to cigars as I just brought some back from Cuba. I'm naturally tidy but not neurotic. Everything has to have a place but I wouldn't consider myself anally retentive."

Interview by Aoife O'Riordain

Photograph by Claudia Janke