Case Study: Louisa Grey

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AGA eR7 in White in Louisa Grey's Kitchen

 We dropped in on House of Grey founder Louisa Grey to find out how she created her gorgeously restful Home of Holism and why she chose an AGA eR7 cooker for the kitchen… 

Louisa Grey’s new house is more than just a home and workplace – it’s a way of life. Before creating it, she set out to find the answer a simple question: how do you make every day feel like a holiday? 

We dropped in on House of Grey founder Louisa Grey to find out how she created her gorgeously restful Home of Holism and why she chose an AGA eR7 cooker for the kitchen… 

Struck by how often people want to escape from their everyday lives, Louisa found herself wondering what life would be like if a home could give us that holiday feeling all year round. That’s how the Home of Holism was born. 

Her business, House of Grey, has developed and defined its aesthetic over the past two decades and Louisa says it is now “pioneering an evidence-based approach to health and contentment in interior design – we call this: Circular Salutogenic Design”. 

She is keen that interiors projects she works on benefit the people living in a given space, but also that there is a more “whole-person-whole-world” approach to designing buildings in their signature style, but with salutogenic design principles using circular, cradle-to-cradle® materials. 

Louisa’s approach is a symbiotic one, using natural materials that benefit human health when in use and which actively feed the earth upon disposal. 

“We are no longer simply finding sustainable design solutions,” she says. “Our work is now focused on eliminating the problem altogether.”

During the pandemic, Louisa began renovating a large Victorian terraced house in North London, turning it into a home and workspace. The results are stunning. It’s a restful, beautiful space where form and function come together to create a seamless living environment. 

“Home of Holism in North London is our new concept for holistic work/life balance which simultaneously encompasses every aspect of my life. It exists to balance the needs of me as a designer, maker, and creator; a working mother; a business owner; a social being; and person who holds the value of health in high esteem.”Louisa Grey House of Holism Kitchen

The kitchen is a great example. It’s by Finch London in collaboration with House of Grey and was designed to balance visual elements with the practical and sustainable. Using locally sourced ash from Uxbridge, it was built in Leyton in London to limit the carbon footprint of the kitchen. The worktops and island are covered in a mineral specialist finish which was applied by One and Maike, which gives them a chic, pared-back look.  

Louisa’s aim was to create a home that allows you to decompress at the end of each day and provides a nurturing, healthy environment that restores you through the chosen materials. 

AGA eR7 in WhiteAt the heart of the kitchen is an all-electric AGA eR7 in White. Louisa chose this model because it is fully controllable, allowing flexibility and limiting energy wastage, and it can be powered solely by sustainable energy. 

“My parents have always had an AGA” she says, “so I have a lot of memories of having them at home in Cambridgeshire as a small child. Now AGAs have developed, innovated and evolved so they are perfect modern life. The fact they are able to use more sustainable energy and are controllable has drawn me in even more.” 

Having an electric AGA allows Louisa to use 100% renewable energy, something she feels really passionate about. In fact, it was the key factor in her choice of AGA model. She chose white because “it doesn’t look visually heavy, and I like the fact it reflects the light”. 

It’s not just the AGA’s environmental credentials that appeal to Louisa, though. It’s the food too. 

“The food tastes so good,” she says. “I do a lot of slow cooking. A lot of soups, stews, and slow-roasted vegetables, so I find it really useful. I also make a lot of pizza. I’m very sociable and have a large group of friends so I like to host and cook, and the AGA allows me to entertain with ease.” 

This isn’t Louisa’s first AGA. When she bought her first home in London, she invested in a gas AGA. In her next house she had an AGA Total Control, and she now feels she couldn’t imagine having a kitchen without one. 

“It’s the cosiness it brings to the kitchen too,” she says. “It retains the heat for so long that if I cook I don’t have to have the heating on in the kitchen and, when I switch it off, it still holds the heat, meaning the kitchen feels lovely and cosy and at Christmas we made mulled wine and the heat of the AGA kept it warm.”

“We chose an electric AGA Range Cooker for the kitchen at the Home of Holism so it can be powered by sustainable energy. As with all AGAs there is a different quality to the food as it tastes much better due to the radiant heat cooking. The new AGA is much more flexible in terms of how it can be used to enable energy saving and 100% powered by renewable energy.”

“Where possible we always specify AGAs as they provide the house with a very specific cosiness. For the kitchen at the Home of Holism, we wanted to ensure we use renewable energy and AGAs new range allows us to do just this.”

Louisa Grey in cooking in kitchen in front of white AGA eR7