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London-based Irish designer Orla Kiely

Interiors insider: Orla Kiely

London-based Irish designer Orla Kiely began her career in fashion, but has since become a legend within the interior circle. Her quirky and recognisable prints have featured on various objects from kitchenware and lamps to cars and wallpaper. Her pop-up shops at John Lewis are open until 16 June.

James Lohan of Mr & Mrs Smith

Interiors insider: James Lohan of Mr & Mrs Smith

Since co-founding the travel website Mr & Mrs Smith (with his wife Tam), James Lohan has become a connoisseur in interior design. Last month, the father-of-two launched Smithandfamily.co.uk, a collection of parent-approved hotels for families who want style – and happy children. He talks to Annie Deakin about unusual interiors and common decorating mistakes.

Leap in the dark: Bright and breezy was never going to do it for the designer Abigail Ahern

Ahern repainted her house in dark, inky tones for an Elle Decoration photoshoot and has never looked back...

Bee Osborn is an interior designer who lives in London with her three daughters and art dealer husband

Interiors insider: Bee Osborn

Inchbald-trained Bee Osborn is an interior designer who lives in London with her three daughters and art dealer husband. She is currently working on the refurbishment of the iconic Hotel St Barth Isle de France, which is part of the Oetker Collection. Osborn talks to Annie Deakin about lighting, Kit Kemp and design tricks.

The 10 Best garden power tools

The sun is out, the grass is dry. Here’s all you need to plug in and make your garden picture-perfect for summer

The 10 Best lawnmowers

The sun is finally out, so there’s no excuse not to tidy up that lawn. Here’s our pick of the finest grass trimmers in town

Sebastian Conran

Interiors insider: Sebastian Conran

The eldest son of Sir Terence Conran, Sebastian Conran runs his own design studio in Barons Court, London. He has recently launched Universal Expert collection of homewares, available from www.johnlewis.com. He talks to Annie Deakin about his mentors, common design mistakes and his dream project.

The 10 Best steam cleaners

Trade in your mop and bucket and get to work on that stubborn grease and grime

The insider: How to create a happy home

Does your home make you happy? Charlotte Hedeman Guéniau knows a thing or two about that. She's just written a book on the topic – Happy Home: Everyday Magic for a Colourful Life (£25, Jacqui Small). She shares some of her excellent cheap-as-chips tips for lifting your pad's mood here – just what we need as we will the last of winter away…

Damned beautiful: Get in the mood for Gatsby's second coming next month

1. Charleston cup and saucer

The Insider: Planning for lodgers

If you've been touched by the financial gloom (and which of us hasn't?), letting – or, if permitted, sub-letting – a room in your home can be an ace income-booster. But if you fear a new experience that might conjure up a studenty house-sharing vibe, consider revamping your space thoughtfully before you rent out...

Craftwork: Fort Standard’s marble trivets typify the focus on craft from US design. £65 each, fatelondon.com

Born in the USA

American fashion labels dominate the high street, but now it's time to welcome the country's homewares into our homes, says Trish Lorenz

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Paul Scholes column

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