Behind The Scenes With The Home Page

 

Renowned journalists, editors and consultants, Jessica Jonzen and Rosalind Sack launched The Home Page at the beginning of 2019 to celebrate beautiful homes and the emotional connections we hold with the places where we live. With a combined total of nearly 30 years of experience - including time spent at many of our favourite magazines and digital destinations - Jess and Ros have created an impressive online magazine that opens up the wonderful world of interiors to everyone.

Placing equal attention on both life and lifestyle, The Home Page takes a look inside some of the most incredible homes around the country and introduces you to inspiring, real stories that leave a lasting impact. Interwoven with comforting home recipes, engaging interviews, tempting shopping edits and travel destinations that are now firmly at the top of our wish lists, The Home Page embraces the authentic comforts and connections of our homes.

So, after an unexpected year where the idea of home has become more important than ever, we spoke to Jess & Ros to discover more about their journey in the starting The Home Page, what home means to them and their top tips for creating a more individual interior…

Interview With Founders Jessica Jonzen and Rosalind Sack

Headshot image of The Home Page Founders

Image - The Home Page Co-Founders: Jessica Jonzen & Rosalind Sack. Photography by Wendy Aldiss Photography

1. Take us back to the very beginning, when did you two meet?

We met while we were working on a now defunct regional glossy lifestyle magazine. We’ve been journalists and editors for over 30 years between us, and have worked for titles and publishers including The Sunday Times, Hearst UK, Bauer Media, Net-a-Porter and Matches Fashion, and had both made the move out of London. We immediately hit it off and quickly developed a really seamless working relationship and a great friendship which has been a brilliant foundation for our business.

2. What inspired you to launch The Home Page?

We felt there was so much more which could be said about homes and interiors than simply sharing the latest decorating trends. A lot of the homes we saw featured in interiors magazines felt inaccessible and unrelatable and we felt that there was room for an online magazine which was welcoming and inclusive. As journalists, we wanted to dig deeper and tell the stories which unfold within people’s homes – they’re the backdrop to our lives, after all. We wanted to create a place which was packed with inspiration but was also satisfying to read.

After a lot of planning, The Home Page went live in January 2019 and it’s been such a wonderful journey so far. We’ve interviewed an incredible array of people including Skye Gyngell, Jess Phillips MP, Natalie Lee from Style Me Sunday, Pearl Lowe, and Rockett St George’s very own Lucy St George. The homes we feature vary enormously but they all share a common thread – they belong to real people and are the kinds of places where you can imagine settling down with a cup of tea for a chat.

lifestyle images from The Home page of a display shelf and ochre bedroom

Image credit: The Home Page, Photos by Wendy Aldiss Photography

3. What does your home mean to you and what are the little (or big) things that make your house a home?

Jess:  It’s a word we hear from a lot of our interviewees on The Home Page but my home is my sanctuary. It’s a safe and happy place where my husband and I are raising our children and we now have a Labrador puppy too which has really made it feel like home (I’ve had to really up my hoovering game though!). I love the simple comforting rituals of the day here – the Moka coffee pot on the stove in the morning, noisy family meals at the kitchen table, movie nights on the sofa, a hot bath and clean sheets.

Ros: My home is the one place where I can close the door on the world and feel completely at ease and it’s where myself and my family feel safe. I try to never take that for granted. It’s an evolving space that is as much about people as it is about place; something we often hear from our interviewees, too. It’s where our naughty ginger cat can usually be found snoozing in a sunny spot, where my two-year-old daughter likes to dance around the kitchen to Bonnie Tyler (yes, really!) and where I feel part of a community.

lifestyle image looking through a door to a beautiful blue bedroom

Image credit: The Home Page, Photos by Wendy Aldiss Photography

4. How do you think the role of the home has changed in 2020? And what advice do you have for anyone adapting their home for everything from work and learning, to family time, relaxation and everything in-between?

Our homes now have to serve many different functions. Before 2020, many of us spent relatively little time in them. Now, we live and work in the same place and, of course, they also had to serve as a school for those of us with children. 2020 has made us reframe how we see our homes – they’re not merely a financial investment, or somewhere to sleep – they are the anchor point to our lives and it’s important that we spend time thinking about how they make us feel, rather than just how they look.

In terms of advice, if you’re working from home it is really worthwhile investing in creating a dedicated work space – even if it’s only a desk in the corner of a room. Make sure you’re sitting near natural light and you’re surrounded by things which make you feel happy and inspired. If you’re feeling bored with your living and relaxing spaces, it’s amazing what a difference moving the furniture around or buying a few new accessories can do. Fresh flowers, or just foliage picked from the garden, can really liven up a home too and make it feel more special.

real home images of a kitchen table working space and cosy home office

Image credit: The Home Page, Photos by Wendy Aldiss Photography

5. One of the things we love most about The Home Page is the celebration of emotional connections with our homes. This is also incredibly important to us at Rockett St George. What are your top tips for creating a unique and personal home?

Jess: Our mantra at The Home Page is ‘choose what you love!’ It’s your home not someone else’s and you should choose the things which make your heart sing. When I moved into my home in 2015, the Scandi minimalist look was really in and I duly decorated in white and grey but it just wasn’t very ‘us.’ I still like light and bright interiors but I’m embracing colour and pattern and slowly breaking up with grey. Over the years, we’ve bought or inherited more art – anything from original paintings to sheets of gorgeous wrapping paper which I’ve framed – and family photos have gradually gone on display which tell our story. It’s those layers which really make our home ours.

Ros: Don’t spend time worrying if an item will ‘go’ with your décor, or if it will look ‘right’ with your scheme. If you love something it will always have a place in your home and, most importantly, it will make you smile. Besides, little touches of the unexpected are so key to a unique and personal home. And don’t be tempted to tidy away all of the personality in your home. We have quite a minimalist kitchen, but our collection of naff fridge magnets bought on our travels and our daughter’s artwork covers our freezer and we love them. I think sometimes we can forget to have fun with our décor.

lifestyle image from the home page of art prints and posters on the walls

Image credit: The Home Page, Photos by Wendy Aldiss Photography

6. How would you both describe your own personal interior styles?

Jess: Light, layered and cosy.

Ros: Natural, textural and comfortable.

lifestyle images from The Home Page of a white country kitchen and snug living space

Image credit: The Home Page, Photos by Wendy Aldiss Photography

7. What are the pieces in your homes that hold the most sentimental value to you and why?

Jess: A landscape painted by my grandfather; my husband’s childhood chest of drawers which now lives in our son’s bedroom, and our collection of family photos.

Ros:  The olive trees that stood beside my husband and I as we said our wedding vows and are now planted in the garden; my late mother-in-law’s cane rocking chair, and a wooden keepsake box handed down from grandmother to granddaughter through the generations of my family.

8. What should no home be without?

 A comfortable sofa and a well-stocked fridge.

9. What exciting things are in store for The Home Page in the future?

Well that would be telling! Suffice to say we have lots of exciting plans afoot. Diversity is uppermost in our minds, when it comes to both the homes we show and the people we interview. We also want to tell the stories of an even more varied collection of homes and people.

lifestyle image of an eclectic interior with artwork on the walls and pop of pattern

Image credit: The Home Page, Photos by Wendy Aldiss Photography

10. Finally, each name three RSG products that you love?

Jess: The Seventies Inspired Glass Ceiling Light, Three-Tier Brass Shelving Unit & Rose Pink Pottery Dinner Plates.

lifestyle images of a glass chandelier, brass shelf unit and pink dinner plates from Rockett St George

Ros: Black Wooden Teardrop Wall Mirror, Antique White Canopy Shade Ceiling Pendant Light & Adjustable Brass & Wood Wall Shelf.

lifestyle images of a black mirror, industrial wood shelf unit and antique white pendant light from Rockett St George

 

Quick Fire Questions

I am happiest when…

Jess: My children are. Cheesy but true.

Ros: I’m snuggled up on the sofa with my daughter.

My go-to place for inspiration would be…

Jess: Bath or Liberty.

Ros: The Design Museum in Kensington or the woods near my home.

My dream holiday would be…

Jess: A road trip down the Amalfi Coast.

Ros: A mountain retreat in snowy Norway.

My ideal day would be spent…

Jess: With my family and friends, eating delicious food and listening to great music.

Ros: Enjoying a sunny seaside walk followed by a long and lazy lunch, then homemade mojitos and a kitchen disco.

My personal motto is…

Jess: Why not?

Ros: Go with your gut.

My guilty pleasure is…

Jess: Eating cereal for dinner when my husband is away.

Ros: Playing the piano and belting out Alicia Keys hits (badly).

The last film I saw is…

Jess: Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga. It was the perfect silly escapism I needed during lockdown.

Ros: Rocketman. I have fond memories of dancing around my living room in the ‘80s to my Mum’s Elton John LPs.

My favourite book is…

Jess: Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernier. I must have read it eight times.

Ros: Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts is definitely one of them.

In 5 years’ time I want to be…

Jess: Living in a post-Covid world.

Ros: Happy and healthy.

The three things I can’t live without are…

Jess: My husband and children aside, good coffee, good bread and good WiFi.

Ros: My husband, my daughter and a limitless supply of Tunnocks teacakes.

 

To hear more from Jess & Ros and experience the beautiful spaces and sources of inspiration featured on The Home Page, grab a cup of tea and wander into their world!

Leave a Reply

Popular posts: