Kingston upon Thames, London. A dreamy Victorian townhouse with a beautiful terrace and garden, and Richmond Park right on the doorstep: welcome to the home of Jess Rose Parr, her husband Freddie, and their adorable Fox Red Labrador, Winnie. As a former flight attendant, Jess has been on adventures all around the world, but these days she’s enjoying a different pace of life, with her feet firmly on the ground.
With a disarming charm, a passion for travel, and an eye for a great snap, Jess has made quite the name for herself on Instagram, under the accounts @jessroseparr and @jessrosehome. She inspires her followers with delicious recipe ideas and DIY upcycling tips, and takes us on a journey through a ‘before and after’ of her home, which is currently undergoing a major renovation (with the help of Winnie, of course, the 'Pawject Manager'). We chatted with Jess about her style, her hometown of Richmond, and her tips and tricks for creating a "staycation-worthy" interior.
Your Instagram handle used to be @thelayoverlife_, and your content was very focused on your travels. Since then, you’ve ‘settled down’ in your home in London. How did this transition come about?
My content has always been shaped by my experiences. I was a flight attendant for five years, travelling all over the world and my content illustrated this on a daily basis. After stopping flying, I began focusing more on sharing snippets of my home, my relationships and my puppy, Winnie.
What are your favourite things about Kingston upon Thames?
I love how close we are to London, but also it feels removed from the hustle and bustle of the big city. Having Richmond Park on our doorstep has been greatly appreciated this past year—getting outside in nature every day and enjoying the fresh air, woodland walks and deer spotting.
What are your top tips for making your home ‘staycation’ worthy? Or just making the most of your home when you have to stay in!
Staying in never felt so good! To really make a home feel staycation-worthy, I love having my surroundings clean and tidy and well thought out, whether that be the perfect shade of paint on the wall or artwork displayed. Scent is important to me, so lighting my favourite candle is a must! Putting the fire on creates a cosy environment and pouring my favourite drink really sets the scene for the perfect staycation at home.
You’re currently renovating your home, which is no mean feat. What changes are you making, and have you encountered any unexpected challenges so far?
We began renovating 4 weeks ago and we have a few more months to go. It’s been a challenge, but it’s been so much fun getting to see how quickly our home is changing. We’re adding an additional floor in the loft to create a guest room with a bathroom and office area. We’re also creating an open plan living space in our kitchen by adding a dining and lounge area leading to the garden. It’s a big job but it’ll be so worth it. For us the biggest challenge so far has been working from home with all the building noise going on, as we’re living on site during the build. I’m vlogging the whole process on my YouTube channel, and it’s really just been so fascinating to see how much progress has already been made.
What drew you to the print designs you chose for your home?
I’ve always loved the JUNIQE designs because there is so much variety to choose from, whatever your style may be. I love the abstract prints most, because they complement the decor of my home so well. Bold enough to make a statement, but they also merge with the whole concept of the room.
Which is your favourite area of your home? What makes it special?
My favourite area of my home is my styled shelves in the corner of my living room. Sitting in this velvet chair by the fire, taking in the surroundings, reading a book, and perhaps having a drink is just so enjoyable. To me it’s both the perfect place to cosy up with a cup of tea and really feel at home, as well as to get dressed up and have a glass of wine and feel like you’re sitting in the corner of a boutique hotel.
A big thank you, Jess! With English parks, beautiful Victorian houses, and a good drink in good company… sounds like a dreamy staycation!
Text: Eva Klann
Translation: Anna Fleck