I was invited to help with a backyard makeover for Lesley Nicol as a member of the World Market Trendsetter Tribe. All ideas and opinions are always 100% my own.
Two weeks ago I had the most AMAZING experience that I just had to share with you. I was asked to help put together a backyard makeover with World Market for Lesley Nicol, the amazing actress who plays Mrs. Patmore on Downton Abbey.
If you know me at all, then you know I’m a HUGE fan of Downton Abbey, and jumped at the chance to help.
I’ve watched the show from the beginning (multiple times) and love everything about it. I’ve even thrown two big Downton Abbey tea parties too (you can see all the details and photos of the parties here and here).
It was an amazing opportunity to be asked to go to Lesley Nicol’s home in Los Angeles and implement a backyard makeover that Amy from Atta Girl Says designed. I wanted to share with you some of my experience because I know that many of you are huge Downton Abbey and Lesley Nicol fans too!
I’ll save Lesley’s full backyard reveal for Amy to share with you (you can see it all here on her blog), since she was the one who designed it. She lives in North Carolina and wasn’t able to come to put it all together and take the photos, so I was asked to photograph it all and help put it together.
In this post I’ll be focusing on my experience, while she will be sharing the details of the makeover.
All of the furniture and accessories we used to decorate Lesley’s space are from World Market. They’ve got a GREAT selection of outdoor furniture, outdoor pillows, and accessories for summer that looked just perfect in their backyard!
I’m thrilled to say that Lesley is even more amazing in real life than I had imagined. She was so sweet and grateful, as was her kind husband, Da’aboth.
They both were very excited for the makeover and were outside in the hot sun with for most of the time, watching the transformation unfold and getting more and more excited as each new piece went up.
We set up three different areas in their backyard for them- an outdoor entertaining space with all of the pieces from my favorite World Market outdoor collection, an outdoor eating area in their gazebo, and a cozy lounging area.
I hung these gorgeous outdoor lanterns inside the center of their gazebo over their outdoor dining area. I LOVE the way these turned out, and am sure that they’ll look stunning with lit candles flickering in them at night.
Lesley and her husband recently moved to L.A. from England, and were very excited about creating more entertaining areas in their yard. Lesley’s husband mentioned that they had been spending time with one of the Guns N’ Roses band members and said that his ears were still ringing from a concert that they had recently been too!
We chatted about everything from bee keeping, Maggie Smith (who plays the Dowager Countess on Downton Abbey), life in L.A., Lesley’s recent trip to help save pandas in China, to their adorable dogs, Bertie and Freddie. It was a very surreal experience!
Da’aboth is a huge Star Wars fan, like our family, and he and Lesley were invited by J.J. Abrams (a Downton Abbey fan himself) to go to the Star Wars: The Force Awakens set and go on the Millenium Falcon. His eyes lit up as he talked about going inside and seeing the chess set from the movie.
Their dog Bertie loved the new furniture too!
When the new larger pieces of furniture and the outdoor rug were set up, he claimed them by rolling over them and spreading out to relax. Smart dog!
Freddie was a bit more shy, but had warmed up to me by the time we left. He brought his little frisbee to me and placed down at my feet to throw to him, which Lesley said he didn’t do to new people.
After the makeover was complete, Lesley and her husband offered us lunch. They served us a delicious spread of various salads, nuts, hummus, veggies, sparkling water, and more. They were a delight to chat with while eating in their newly made over space.
After eating Lesley Nicol signed autographed Mrs. Patmore photos for us. I texted Lesley Amy’s number and Lesley was kind enough to Facetime Amy so she could see what the finished space looked like, which was very thoughtful.
You’ll want to check out Lesley’s backyard makeover reveal on Atta Girl Says. It’s a beautiful transformation and now she and her husband are ready for outdoor summer entertaining in their lovely new space!
All in all, it was a fabulous day that I will NEVER forget. Lesley and Da’aboth were so warm and gracious and thoughtful, and I am so grateful for the opportunity I had to meet them and help create a beautiful space for them with World Market.
This blog of mine has brought me such amazing opportunities and experiences and the chance to meet so many wonderful people, and for that I am forever grateful.