C&J Blog Article


We HAVE to share this remarkable house with you. It was owned by Serbian born textile designer Bernat Klein and his wonderful wife Margaret.

Many years ago, whilst fledgling designers and weekly columnists with The Glasgow Herald in Scotland, we travelled to Selkirk (in our little blue Citroen 2CV Dyane, bought at auction for the princely sum of seventy five pounds) to this wonderful home, and spent the day with the creative couple. We shall never forget those precious hours. Nor the journey, either way, at 25 MPH.

By that time, both Bernat and Margaret were in their late seventies but each was remarkably spry. They prepared for us a delicious salad and a crisp, golden omelette and we remember, to this day, how clean it all tasted. Later, they offered us a desert of fresh pears, skinned and served with water bowls to clean our fingers. Then they brewed fresh coffee and delivered it in Danish tall steel cups. Margaret baked cinnamon shortbread. It all seemed so chic, so stylish and so pure. 

Bernat regaled us with tales of fashion shows he'd laid on (in his home) during the late 1960's and early 1970's. We listened intently, hanging on his every gentle word. He conjured up such imagery as he talked of 'mannequins' striding across the travertine floor - these couture shows were for Dior, Balenciaga, St Laurent and Chanel, fashion houses he tempted to Scotland rather than have to disrupt his entire production team (and all his models) by taking them abroad. He said; "Be confident in who you are. Love your craft. And people will come to you." 

As we prepared to leave, Bernat signed copies of 'Design Matters', one of his books, and he told us to go out and chase life till we caught it. He and Margaret were sooooo supportive of our ambitions and we talked several times over the years before he passed. These photographs show the remarkable High Sunderland, as we found it that day. All those long, long years ago...

But we're somewhat concerned. We fear High Sunderland's condition may now be undermined, empty as it has been for several years. We hope it will be restored by people who will love it as much as Bernat and Margaret. It is a vision of Mid Mod architecture, nestled in Scotland, in beautiful Selkirk. 

As we saw it that day, High Sunderland was a very happy house. And we hope it will be again... 


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