Meet the woman who became Instagram famous with her green velvet sofa

Nicola’s green sofa kicks off this year’s biggest interior design trend (Image:

Nicola Broughton is at home mulling over the importance of good furniture.

“Yes,” she said at last. ‘A sofa can really change your life.’ But it’s not just an old sofa – it’s Nicola’s green sofa.

The photo she uploaded as her first Instagram post, was only because it was liked by maximal interior design icon Abigail Ahern, then dozens of others.

Then there are messages from new, inspired followers who have also ordered that green sofa, from, or similar – Nicola started the green sofa trend without even realizing it.

“Okay,” she said. “Maybe I didn’t start the all green sofa trend, but people are following me and buying green sofas.”

Nicola began remodeling her Victorian home as a way to relieve her grief (Image: Heidi Marfitt)
The famous green sofa (Image: Heidi Marfitt)

Nicola, a businesswoman and scientist who works on cancer treatments every day, started remodeling her Victorian six-bed home as a way to relieve stress and relax. create a perfect environment to escape from everyday life.

As she uploaded more images of the meticulously handcrafted interiors, dotted with collectibles and giving the unique feel of Downton-meet-Soho House Abbey, she realized that every who doesn’t just care about her sofa.

Her entire beautifully crafted home in a village just outside Leeds is attracting a lot of attention.

It’s chock-full of antiques, high-end furniture, and brave colors, not to mention the first daring DIY experiments Nicola didn’t know would succeed.

Now, she has her own blog, a queue of people wanting to interview and photograph her house, her own home styling business alongside her day job, and 124,000 Instagram followers on Her account The Girl With The Green Sofa.

(Photo: Heidi Marfitt)
The incredible stained glass front door (Image: Heidi Marfitt)

Step in through the front door, with its gorgeous original stained-glass windows and antique cinema seats, complemented by Lucy Tiffney wallpaper and an old eBay Laura Ashley chandelier, and you know you’re coming. for something special.

Stepping into the living room, it’s obvious that calling the house just eclectic is doing it out of the ordinary. There’s a symphony of well-regarded quirky pieces that somehow all play the same tune.

She explains: “We bought the house in 2004. ‘It had a lovely feel to it, with its original wood paneling, fireplace and marble fireplace – all of that – and I knew right away. it was love at first sight. But I wanted to put my own stamp on it – everything was cream with a blue rug – because I wanted my home to feel cozy and welcoming.

‘I usually travel three or four days a week and come back from a white hotel room and back home. I decorate with feeling. It’s about feeling rather than looks and all works have a story. ‘

Nicola likes a quirky statement piece (Image: Heidi Marfitt)
He kooky home is a reflection of her creativity (Image: Heidi Marfitt)

As Nicola pointed out, no room in the house is white. The busy Sandberg wallpaper in the living room will make your average Bauhaus enthusiast drink their turmeric latte, while the Imola chair will satisfy any Scandi.

The vintage wooden spoons, which Nicola collects, are covered under glass domes like the Victorian motorcycle and the coffee table? It’s from Marks & Spencer.

“I find what I like, and it’s usually second-hand, and then I find a place to put it,” she says. ‘I like a relaxing environment. My home is a place to turn off and go into another world. But home is also a hobby, it’s creativity. ‘

Nicola certainly has a creative mind in the kitchen, too. After the ice cream, she started the kitchen with a paintbrush and toolbox. The entire room is a clever upgrade from what was originally there. Open shelves on the wall, a great place to put more interesting niknaks, were originally a pantry.

Existing cabinets have been treated with new handles and painted teal and dark green by Pure White Lines’ Art Deco-style Lick with Paris Globe.

The M&S coffee table fits perfectly (Image: Heidi Marfitt)
Of course her kitchen is amazing too (Image: Heidi Marfitt)

The notched panel at the end of the desk was Nicola’s own idea, purchased from a local hardware store, bolted and painted.

The shutters were purchased from eBay and cut to size and painted, while the Ca’ Pietra tiles add a splash of color.

“I don’t mind getting a drill or a saw,” she said, “I would love that.” Inspiration can come from anywhere or often happens, just from within her mind.

‘Sometimes I see things, sometimes I just try things, and see what happens. It needs a little practice. I really want terracotta for the walls.

‘I chose the color without testing. In the light of the room, it looks gloomy orange. I only had to live with it for about three years. I think you get used to it with anything in the house. ‘

One of the standout rooms is the upstairs bathroom. The spectacular £3,780 bronze tub from BC Designs resembles the green sofa downstairs, in that it comes first and sets the tone for the room.

Nicola spent a long time deciding on the paint color of the cladding – she apparently made her own from MDF for 70 quid – so that it complemented the copper.

Beautiful bronze bathtub (Image: Heidi Marfitt)
Vintage detail (Image: Heidi Marfitt)
Luxurious headboard (Image: Heidi Marfitt)

She uses the invisible Green paint from Little Greene, which really makes the metal stand out. Again, in this room are Ca’ Pietra tiles and oil paintings taken from eBay.

The bedrooms are equally confident. In the green guest bedroom is a red bed. ‘Usually you would think they wouldn’t go but sometimes it takes courage to do it right. What is the worst that can happen if it crashes? Do it – that’s my advice. If I don’t like a certain color, I just paint over it.

‘I made some terrible color mistakes but it was trial and error, but I know from those mistakes who I am and what I want.’

The master bedroom faces North and Nicola wrestled with it for a long time before using a darker color, covering the chimney-brick panelling from Little Greene, to match the vermilion bed by

The cool chest of drawers beside the bed was an old vintage piece that Nicola had glued cane fabric to. House Of Hackney’s fringe lampshades add to the dusty charm effect.

The bohemian feeling continues outside (Image: Heidi Marfitt)
It’s a real secret garden (Image: Heidi Marfitt)

The garden is like a hiding place like the rest of the house.

In the back, she creates high beds out of railway sleepers and plants them with alfalfa, hydrangeas, and Japanese shrubs. She recently painted these blacks and the fence that surrounds the property.

Garden furniture belongs to and Argos and the idea was to create an outdoor living room to relax on a sunny evening.

‘When we first moved in, there was no garden, just flags in the front and back. The garden isn’t big – that’s our compromise. However, it was a perfect fit for our needs and we have a park down the street that is fully equipped for the kids. ‘

Nicola says she’s been moving house for a long time but by constantly changing her property, she never gets tired of it.

‘It’s colorful and eclectic and classic, but also maximal. It’s a mix and filled with everything that I love. That’s what makes my home my home. ‘

And as for the green sofa – will she ever get away with it? “Well, it might wear out one day – but I’ll probably buy another one.”

Follow Nicola on Instagram @the_girl_with_the_green_sofa or check

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Tom Vazquez

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