I live in an elegant
Jugendstil building with lovely wooden floors and soaring ceilings. I feel so lucky to finally have a beautiful home after dreaming about it for so long. I love the green open spaces in Hannover and the wonderful friends I have here, along with my husband's family.
The most important designers
of our time are Galliano, Valentino and the late Alexander McQueen. Valentino has the ability to make women look absolutely stunning. McQueen really raised the bar and started so many huge trends, When I think of edgy style and sexy, theatrical fashion, Galliano is the one who springs to mind.
The most overrated design object
of our time is Lucite furniture and lighting. I just can't see the attraction, sadly. Instead, I'm drawn to raw, natural materials like wood, glass, metal and stone.
Right now I am working
on my next decorating book. I begin styling and shooting rooms for it in two weeks. I'll travel around Europe and fly back to America as I did when I wrote my first book.
I'm really excited because this book will include my own home, too. I'm eager to share it because I had only just moved in when I was putting together my first book, Decorate, so my interior wasn't finished in time. My next book will be out later this year, so I have a lot to do.
The easiest way
to update a space is to move your possessions from room to room regularly to refresh your look, and to rearrange the furniture. Don't be afraid to paint - colour can transform a space. Learn how to sew and make new cushions and curtains from time to time. It's so easy.
When I was a child,
my mother made everything herself, from shower curtains to Roman blinds. She painted walls, laid flooring and loved to decorate. She even made her own art for our walls since she loved oil painting.
She instilled in me a love of all things handmade and the domestic arts. Her decorating independence was liberating. She improved our home single-handedly and taught herself skills so she could have a beautiful, functional and organised home. Once you learn how to do basic things for yourself, you can easily change your home.
If I could design one interior,
it would be the cafe in the Eilenriede, our local forest. It needs urgent help. I would give it a Scandinavian-meets-German fairy tale aesthetic that's fresh, inspiring and matches the way the forest feels to me. The current building is falling apart and it's such a shame to see our only forest cafe so unloved.
I spend my weekends
visiting the flea market along the Leine river, decorating, shopping, watching films, buying and arranging flowers, cooking, reading and walking in the forest with my husband.
My ideal evening out
would be to attend a Venetian masked ball and dance all night in a gorgeous dress wearing a black feathered mask.
On my iPod,
you'll find Sia, Morrissey, The Smiths, Ellie Goulding, Maroon 5, Au Revoir Simone, Adele, Ayo, Justin Timberlake, Michael Jackson, Amy Winehouse, David Bowie, George Michael, Keane, The Killers and Frank Sinatra.
I want to take a proper holiday. I haven't had a real break in several years and I want to go away so badly. To unplug and escape the internet for three or four weeks would be lovely. I'm considering taking some time off in August.
If I had to choose
between form or function, I would choose form, but finding a good balance is key. Functional objects need to look appealing and pretty things have to function properly.
Design is important
because it affects how people feel and relate to one another. People often behave better in beautiful spaces than they do in ones that are not pleasing to the eye.
I'd like to see
fewer copycats and more risk takers in the design industry.
Lots of bloggers
are starting their own e-courses and looking at alternative ways to earn an income through their online presence. From e-courses to e-mags, it's important for bloggers to look at their options but equally important is the need for them to create things that allow them to stand out and not to repeat themes that are already out there.
The person who inspires me
the most is my husband, Thorsten Becker. He taught me how to have a lot of self confidence. I can face things I never could have faced before, thanks to him.
In five years' time,
I will be celebrating life and cherishing my family even more than I do today. With age comes wisdom, so I hope to be wiser, too.