Rebecca Udall specialises in fine bed, bath and table linens as well as luxury tableware that can help transform your dining table into a mesmerising wonder – and just in time for Christmas too. We recently caught up with Rebecca Udall to find out how it all began and to learn her top tips on table-scaping this coming festive season.
When did your love of textiles begin and what led you to set up Rebecca Udall?
From my teenage years I had a strong interest in interiors. I would always choose interior magazines over fashion. I remember having strong ideas about my bedroom redecoration aged 15; I was very adamant about everything – the furniture style, wallpaper, bed linen to curtains. I am not sure what initiated this as it wasn’t a family influence.
Upon leaving university I had my heart set on becoming a homeware buyer. My first foray into textiles specifically was a role in a bed and bath linens buying team. This really helped me to get an understanding of the industry and undoubtedly led me to do what I am doing now.
We guess there’s no such thing as a typical day, but what do your days involve?
My day starts by printing orders and writing cards to accompany orders as well as planning out my day, as best I can (urgent matters can always crop up). Emails do take up a large part of my day, whether it’s liaising on orders, customer emails, new product development, amongst others.
Key tasks that will be split across the week may include: bookkeeping; website maintenance; email marketing; data analysis on website data, sales and marketing efforts; photography and editing; range analysis, development and sourcing for the new season; Zoom calls and content writing. There are also less glamorous tasks such as cleaning and sorting out slow wifi!
Days out of the office can include visiting suppliers, attending networking events with other business owners to share experiences and tips, shoot days to trade shows.
Pictured above: Tree Italian linen cocktail napkins in natural.
What do you love most about your work?
There is really nothing better than a customer telling you that they are thrilled with their order and recommending you to their friends. That’s when you know you are doing a good job.
I also feel a huge amount of personal fulfilment doing something I am genuinely so passionate about – designing and sourcing fantastic quality linens and homeware. I feel incredibly lucky.
Pictured above: Laquer swirl taper candle.
Do you have any top tips for designing a table this Christmas?
Keep your Christmas table true to your style. If you live in a cosy cottage in the country with relaxed interiors, a maximalist table similar in style to what you might find at a wedding is not going to feel quite right. Equally, if your husband detests candles and you insist on lighting ten in front of his eye line – well, this is not going to make for a joyful, relaxed supper! (in this instance my advice is to stick to tea lights). The best thing about tablescapes is that there are so many different ways to approach it and any effort is great. Table bauble decorations in your favourite colour palette can be a great way to bring in whatever colour you might wish to.
Pictured above: Ceramic bud vase, rustic white.
Flowers can be expensive but they really do transform a table. Bud vases are a great way to fill your table with blooms but with less need for a large bouquet. Even less exotic flowers such as carnations will lift a table. Bud vases look better with a mix of different buds and some foliage rather than single stems.
Besides flowers, you could go for a walk on Christmas eve and forage for holly, ivy and anything else that you feel might make a pretty garland along the centre of your table. Dried limes and oranges also make for great decoration, as do spray painted pine cones, dried lotus heads and walnuts.
Add some personal elements for your guests. I am making homemade crackers this year and will choose small gifts based on what I feel people will like. Other ideas include gingerbread man portraits place cards (leave this to the kids for maximum humour) or monogrammed napkins.
Pictured above: Large rattan bathroom tray in brown.
Is there any exciting news or products we should know about for early 2021?
There is an awful lot planned! Our ever-popular rattan range will be extended with some fantastic pieces. I am also developing a design of glassware at the moment which I think is so beautiful. I am really looking forward to 2021 so much.
Images: Rebecca Udall