Monday, 30 July 2012

The Best Job In The World...Probably...

If you could choose to do anything - absolutely any job in the world - AND be paid for doing it...I wonder what job you would choose?

Personally, I want Ros Byman Shaw's job. Ros is the author of some of my very favourite interiors books. They're the ones that I go to bed with, and hug in my sleep. Forget 'Fifty Shades of Grey' fantasies consist of Fifty Shades of greige...faded pink...and vintage floral!

They're the sort of books that have taken over from the childhood fantasy novels, where I once imagined myself as the central character, playing the heroine in the most wonderful adventures. Except now - with interiors books such as the one's that Ms. Byam Shaw writes - I no longer imagine myself playing the brave, inquisitive heroine. The need for bravery has fallen by the wayside - it is just the inquisitiveness that remains. Now, in my imagination, I simply walk around the most beautiful English country houses and am free to nose into antique linen cupboards and regard heirloom art collections, throwing myself onto plump tapestry cushions and into grand four posters swathed in vintage eiderdowns and lace trimmed sheets handed down through generations. Now, I caress the perfectly hued Farrow and Ball painted surfaces, admiring the aged undulations of the wattle and daub walls.

How wonderful to be invited into peoples homes, to be positively encouraged to help style and photograph them beautifully - and then to be able to write all about it and be published afterwards.

What a joy to spend every working moment submerged in such personal history, architecture, quirky beauty and individual style - AND (I say it again!) to be paid for it!

Yes, that surely must be the best job in the world?


images courtesy of "The Perfect English Cottage"; "The Perfect English Farmhouse"; "Perfect English"; All by Ros Byam Shaw for Ryland Peters & Small with photography by Jan Baldwin and Chris Tubbs.



  1. I absolutely love that first photo. Heading over to Amazon right now to order the books! Thanks for the introduction, Paula.

    Have a great week,

  2. Hello Paula

    You are right Ros Bymam Shaw has a wonderful job and she is in the right job too. Those images are so original and so much heart is put into these projects. I will be looking for her at my bookstore.
    I love your enthusiasm.

    Helen xx

  3. Something that's always made me hang back from looking to find a full-time income from blogging is the fear that the pressure to perform will make me lose my love for what I do. I wonder if Ros Byam Shaw feels the same? Does she ever wake up thinking, "Oh no, not *another* gorgeous house to review..."!!! I hope not...


  4. Good morning, beautiful!

    My perfect idea of a job? What I am doing RIGHT NOW....doing my art and poetry. To get paid for it? EVEN BETTER!!!!!!!!!!!

    Have a wonderful day, Anita

  5. You showed us a wonderful post.
    Every picture is worth looking at it.
    Lovely hugs

  6. Mmmmmm, lovely pix, Paula. And I'm with you on the "forget the 50 shades of grey" sentiment. I like to go to bed with a good interiors book to drool over. xx

  7. The problem is I would never want to leave. Those are some gorgeous spaces!

  8. I hear you Paula! Her books are absolutely beautiful and so inspiring. I literally drool when flicking through their hallowed pages.

    Wasn't the 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony great. I will never forget the forging of those rings. Brilliant!


  9. My son, who can be a bit of a wit suggested I write a book entitled "Fifty Shades of White" here in rain-every-dayville I have been pondering the perfect shades to freshen up the house, it has taken a while! I am with you on the reading matter, give me glossy magazines any time.

    I do think that a person needs an assistant when contemplating such a grave and weighty career. I will send you my CV forthwith.

  10. I agree it would be the perfect job and help fund my addition - I single handedly keep interior magazines in business. I have a cupboard full of interior books too and love to spend a lazy afternoon pouring over them.

  11. I love looking at interior mags + books, but not so sure I would be that good at being creative. When I see what I like, I "get it", but not before; could be an occupational drawback ;-)

    I'll stick to jewelry x

  12. Great post Paula :o)
    Now, I WANT THE DRESSER in the last photo!
    Rose H

  13. Paula, I definitely know what you mean. I wonder if these folks who bring us views and descriptions of such lovely places do feel that they have perfect jobs, or are really very good at translating a somewhat tricky job into the delightful results that we see?

    I would love to interview some of these writers and photographers...or is it better to keep the dreamy illusions intact.


  14. Great photos, I especially love the library with the large old fashioned pretty. Thanks for sharing.

  15. Best job, indeed, Paula!! I would love to travel with Ros Byam Shaw to visit those incredible homes. Watch her style those yummy vignettes. I have many of her books in our library. She is absolutely one of my favorite lifestyle / design authors.

  16. Would you consider a job-share? Me too! How would I love to nose around other peoples beautiful homes and be given permission to take as many photographs as I liked!!!
    Hey, I hope you have a fab time in our neck of the woods, funnily enough I am off to Norfolk next week, we shall be ships passing in the night...

    Sarah -x-

  17. Thats a nice looking pad! Richard from the Amish community of Lebanon,pa

  18. I'd be a herbalist. I'd love to understand and know how plants work and help people. I may even retrain yet !

  19. Agree that would be a dream job alright!! No need to dream Paula - you already write about interiors - (everyone has commented on your excellent writing talent!!) - you just need to put everything in book format AND get paid for it!!!! As for my dream job - as you know my dream has come true, I feel very lucky.


  20. Hi Paula
    I just love all of his books, spend many a leisurely breakfast drooling over them. What would I have liked to have been - I would love to have been a set designer, sourcing out the perfect house to match a story and then sourcing lots of lovely props!!! my imagination could just run wild then. But in a small way I like to think I set out a certain lifestyle when I go to a fair!
    Have a lovely week. (I'm up early sewing, would you believe!!)
    Jill x

  21. My dream job - is pretty much what I'm doing, interior design - so I guess I'm pretty luicky!


  22. Oh I would like to be Christina Strutts of Cabbages and roses Little dog so I could loll about all day on her fabulous
    cushions and admire her home, is it a job?

    Take care


  23. I'm still not sure what I want to be when I grow up, but your idea does sound like a good one!

  24. Hi Paula
    very good question. I have to think about that. (smile)
    but I am going over to Amazon to learn more about Ros Byam Shaw. Thank you for the introduction. I love her style.

    Julie x

  25. Beautiful pictures ; thanks for sharing !

  26. I have Perfect English, and this reminds me to go and unearth it and have a drool - what marvellous book it is. Yes, this would be just the job for you, and I think you'd be extremely good at it. Thank you for this Paula *goes off to hunt for book* xxx

  27. PAULA! Oh how nice to see you! Like a breath of spring air! How is your English cottage/manor coming along? Are you PROUD TO BE BRIT????? WOW, your countrymen/countrywomen are doing a splendid job in the Olympics! BRAVO!!!!

    Thank you for stopping by! Enjoy this fabulous summer to the fullest! Anita

  28. love that style!
    thank you for sharing

  29. Hi Paula,
    Great to high-light Ross Byam Shaw.
    Brilliant images.
    Love your comments re 'fifty shades of greige'. I know where you're coming from!!
    Have a lovely weekend,

  30. The best job ever, indeed! Your blog goes in that direction though or it has already arrived... Christa

  31. That would be fabulous! It's hard for me to narrow down what path I'd choose, so many things I enjoy!:)
    Great blog, am your newest follower, thanks for the sweet comment on mine!


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