Made to Measure

When looking for new pieces to furnish their homes with – especially when it comes to bigger-ticket items – more and more people are on the lookout for bespoke furniture that can be perfectly matched with their existing interior design style, according to interior designer Holly Johnson.

We caught up with Holly, also owner of Holly Johnson Antiques, to find out what is so special about the luxury custom-made lighting and furniture brand, Porta Romana, which she has just introduced to her showroom.


There’s nothing like finding the perfect lampshade only to wish the fabric were a slightly darker shade of ivory to match your curtains, or falling in love with the shape and design of a beautiful console table, only to find that it isn’t available in the wood you desire.

We were delighted to come across eco-friendly, British brand Porta Romana, which ticks all the boxes for those looking for the perfect, bespoke piece for their home. Handmaking luxury lighting, furniture and mirrors using innovative techniques and materials, the business has grown from a small London workshop to designing iconic pieces for countless homes, galleries, hotels, yachts, and film sets.

Every item is made to order by highly skilled craftsmen, and offers infinite customisation options, meaning pieces can be easily coordinated with an existing interior, or even gifted to a loved one as a thoughtful, personalised present for a special occasion.

We recently had the honour of witnessing Porta Romana’s highly skilled craftsmen from across the British Isles bringing metal, wood, and marble to life by turning them into unique pieces at their workshop in Farnham, Surrey. Every piece is handmade in Britain, by local glassblowers, ceramicists, metalworks and sculptors, and it was simply awe-inspiring to watch first-hand the individual custom finishes being carefully applied to each piece. From fabrics to finishes, every little detail can be tailored to your preference and the possibilities are endless. Tables can be topped with marble, glass, oak, lacquer or faux limestone, and lampshades can be customised by shape, fabric, lining and even trim. All painted pieces are available in any finish you like, or you can choose from the Porta Romana library, ranging from rich, opulent golds to highly burnished silvers and everything in between.

Sustainable Interior Design

The business is firmly committed to minimising its environmental impact, and implements sustainable practices across its production, packaging, materials, energy consumption and more. 80% of its range is made no more than 45 miles from its Farnham head office – we love the fact that we are supporting a British made brand. Boasting meticulous craftsmanship, each and every piece is not only totally bespoke, but also crafted to last a lifetime.

Customers are also able to benefit from Porta Romana’s ‘Upcycling Club’, which is a refurbishment and part exchange service enabling customers to love their favourite pieces for longer, or part exchange for an entirely new product.

Customers can take inspiration from the Porta Romana items we have on display to create their own bespoke and totally unique product that is made-to-order for their interior, however if you are not sure where to start, our in-house interior designers are on hand to help, and can advise customers on what finishes and fabrics to choose to fit their existing interiors.

Founder Holly, trained at Christies, went onto develop her career at Bonhams (then Phillips) and subsequently worked with David Dickinson showing 19th Century Exhibition Furniture at the major London Fairs.

Holly Johnson and her husband Ben Aardewerk, together with their specialist team have supplied all the leading international interior designers over the years, with a particular following in America. Shipping items over to grace many of the luxury homes throughout the States. They also supply many London based designers for private and hotel projects. There have been many celebrity clients along the way including Oprah Winfrey, Woody Allen the film director, Janet Jackson, renowned Chef /Hotelier Marco Pierre White, the Beckhams to name a few.

For more information and to see current stock, please visit

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