Saints Style | The House in Town

John Manning is owner of ‘The House In Town’ and opened his destination shop in 2011, as an addition to his mother’s shop Maud’s Attic and his brother’s venue Merchant House Interiors.  All three shops can be found in the charming St. Peter’s Street, occupying numbers 23 to 29. John has a background in property development & interior design, which has led to retailing home interiors and accessories.

the house in town, ipswich, the saints, 

Here at The House In Town, we believe that the sitting room is one of the most important rooms in the house.  It is arguably the room which says the most about you and is also the room most seen by friends and family. 

Beyond the usual furniture pieces (of which we have lots), finishing touches can really be applied; with the use of mirrors, artwork, clocks and decorative pieces.  This is the best & most cost-effective way of really giving your home the ‘wow’ factor.

A mirror will bounce natural light and a statement frame can make a room on its own.  I like to see one in every sitting room, either on a chimney breast or above a sofa.  Large round mirrors can be especially stylish and effective.  The one featured here is 118cm in diameter and has a silver/gold finish.  With over 1,000 different mirrors to choose from, we’ll always find the right piece for you.

For me, a clock is an essential piece in any lounge.  As well as the functional aspect, it’s a great way of adding some colour and with so many sizes available, a clock can be the answer for smaller areas of exposed wall, which are sometimes more difficult to fill.  Our sister shop, Merchant House Interiors, is also a real clock specialist.  Located only 2 doors away, you can look at a large selection.

Whilst artwork is very much down to personal taste, it is an expression of your personality and allows you to be as bold as you like (or subtle for that matter).  Personally, I like to see one statement piece, rather than a collection of smaller, weaker pieces.  The latest range in my shop uses hand embellished liquid glass and crystals to give a very tactile finish.  This really has to be seen for yourself, to be really appreciated.  To complement the large range of artwork, we also have a huge range of cushions to match.

The final piece which will really showcase your home of an evening, or dark winter’s day, is lighting.  The feature chandelier shown is a real stunner, but not everyone will have the room or necessary ceiling height to accommodate it. LED lighting is a very modern twist on some classic designs and has the added advantage of more efficient running costs -  as there aren’t any bulbs to replace.  A lot of our chandeliers have matching table and floor lamps to complement them, but they also look fantastic on their own.

In the last few months we’ve been working hard on our new website which will launch very soon (  As independent retailers, we much prefer that you come and browse our 3 family shops, but the website gives you a taste of the thousands of pieces that we have to offer.