Burning designs: David Hicks for Jo Malone

How David Hicks’ son Ashley chose the prints for Jo Malone's shockingly patterned candles by Annie Deakin

Design and fashion collaborations come and go, some bizarre, some sellouts and some that fizzle into nothing. The latest of note is between Jo Malone and the late interior decorator and designer David Hicks. This seems a surprising pairing. David Hicks patterns are best known for their vibrant often clashing colourful geometry while new partner-in-crime Jo Malone is infamous for understated packaging.

In one of his nine design books, David Hicks wrote; ‘My greatest contribution as an interior designer has been to show people how to use bold colour mixtures, how to use patterned carpets, how to light rooms and how to mix old with new.’ Hicks made carpets for Windsor Castle, decorated the Prince of Wales’ first apartment at Buckingham Palace and the yacht belonging to the King of Saudi Arabia. His commissions were as varied as they were exciting; among them the interior of a BMW, a pair of scarlet-heeled men’s evening shoes, the Okura Hotel in Tokyo and even his own coffin. David died in 1998 yet his designs continue to thrive under the creative guidance of his son Ashley who creates fabric, carpet, tiles and now Jo Malone candles adapted from, or inspired by, original David Hicks designs.

Like his father used to, Ashley scents his rooms making this candle collaboration a natural step. ‘It’s nice to engage all the senses although lick-able wallpaper and edible cushions might be a step too far,' says Ashley. 'I always used to use Indian joss sticks (a habit of my father’s back in the Seventies) which I used to buy in bulk on work trips to India.’

Inspiration for the three geometric Jo Malone candles - called Hicksonian, Riviera and Herbert's Carnation - came from family memories and Ashley's father's archives. Fans of David Hicks will recognize the Hicksonian logo (four H’s joined together) that adorns the Red Roses candle. ‘He used it everywhere, in emulation of his father-in-law who had an M of B cypher (for Mountbatten of Burma) on everything, including his servants’ livery,’ recalls Ashley. ‘As a child, I slept in sheets printed with this Hicksonian pattern; more recently, I made my dining room floor tiles in it.’ It felt natural to reinterpret the pattern onto a candle. ‘The faded pink colour was taken from my father’s country drawing room which he’d fill with the scent of freshly cut roses all summer long – perfect for the Red Roses scented candle.’ Ashley burns his Hicksonian candle in his dining room alongside some hellebores, a single iris and a lump of mica tiled with the same design. He says of the look, ‘I love putting single flowers in tiny containers, especially on my black dining table, where the colours really show.’

Memories of the Mediterranean motivated the thinking behind his second candle Riviera; ‘The bold geometric design of Riviera was originally inspired by the roof tiles of the 14th century Hospice de Beaune in Burgundy that we used to visit every summer en route to our house on the Riviera.’ Says Ashley, who thought it an obvious match to the zingy, fresh smell of Jo Malone’s Lime, basil and mandarin fragrance. ‘Two Riviera candles scent my hall at home, their angular green lines work well with my Mask steel console, surrounded by orange plastic, and a pottery Ganesh – God of good luck – to look after my house.’

The third candle Herbert’s Carnation is named after Ashley’s grandfather (and David’s father) Herbert Hicks. ‘He was a City of London stockbroker. Living in Essex, he caught the train every morning with a freshly picked carnation in his buttonhole; an elegant Victorian gent,’ remembers Ashley. The result is a deep and intense geo-floral pattern paired with the rich plum Pomegranate Noir fragrance. ‘The velvety reds of carnation perfectly suit the musky scent of Pomegranate Noir. The reds come from my father’s library, where he stretched red silk velvet from an old evening dress over the chimneybreast.’ At home, Ashley positions the red Herbert’s Carnation next to a couple of old, green glass buoys, his childhood drawing of a sunset from their Bahamian beach house and his daughter’s pottery boat.

The Jo Malone/ David Hicks collaboration was an inspired decision. Marrying a brand so synonymous with discreet packaging with a designer celebrated for vibrant colours has refreshed the public's interest. Just don't tell Ashley that his candles are on trend. ‘If I spot a trend, I’m determined to avoid it,' he insists. 'I think a room wants to look as good now as it will in thirty years time, or would have thirty years ago. And if it’s (ghastly expression) on-trend, it’s highly unlikely to do either.’

Annie Deakin is interiors writer for sofa and interior design website mydeco.com.

Discover more property articles at Homes and Property
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Account Manager / Sales Executive - Contract Hire

£35000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This industry leader provides c...

Recruitment Genius: Project Coordinator

£28000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Project Coordinator is requir...

Recruitment Genius: Area Sales Manager - Midlands

£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: PHP Developer - 3-4 Month Fixed Contract - £30-£35k pro rata

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a 3-4 month pro rata fi...

Day In a Page

John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy
UK heatwave: Temperature reaches 39.8 degrees on Central Line - the sweatiest place in London

39.8 degrees recorded on Tube

There's hot (London) and too damn hot (the Underground). Simon Usborne braved the Central line to discover what its passengers suffer
Kitchens go hi-tech: From robot chefs to recipe-shopping apps, computerised cooking is coming

Computerised cooking is coming

From apps that automatically make shopping lists from your recipe books to smart ovens and robot chefs, Kevin Maney rounds up innovations to make your mouth water
Jessie Cave interview: The Harry Potter star has published a feminist collection of cartoons

Jessie Cave's feminist cartoons

The Harry Potter star tells Alice Jones how a one-night stand changed her life
10 best barbecue books

Fire up the barbie: 10 best barbecue books

We've got Bibles to get you grilling and smoking like a true south American pro
Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most
Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her
Ajmer: The ancient Indian metropolis chosen to be a 'smart city' where residents would just be happy to have power and running water

Residents just want water and power in a city chosen to be a ‘smart’ metropolis

The Indian Government has launched an ambitious plan to transform 100 of its crumbling cities
Michael Fassbender in 'Macbeth': The Scottish play on film, from Welles to Cheggers

Something wicked?

Films of Macbeth don’t always end well - just ask Orson Welles... and Keith Chegwin
10 best sun creams for body

10 best sun creams for body

Make sure you’re protected from head to toe in the heatwave