From Black Girl’s Book Club to #BlackGirlsDoRunUK, thanks to the proliferation of social media, it’s easier than ever to find community and solidarity with others online. So, when I started my renovation project with no prior knowledge or experience, I immediately took to Instagram in search of others that looked like me.
One of the first accounts I stumbled across was Making The Manor. Run by Faith and Deji, a couple in their twenties, the pair purchased a flat in south east London at the beginning of the year. With the interior design and home renovation space dominated by white faces, it was refreshing to follow Faith and Deji’s journey. Along the way, I discovered other black renovation accounts including Rona Renovation, HS Residence and Becks Family Home. Throughout the lockdown, these accounts kept me entertained and provided a source of inspiration for my project.
When the Black Lives Matter movement went mainstream over the summer, major players in the interior design and home renovation space spoke out against the lack of diversity and pledged to do better. A black square on Blackout Tuesday and a statement of intent offering short-term ‘solutions’ were commonplace. But away from the performative posts that littered our Instagram feeds, a collective called Melenated Renovators were deep in discussion about how to bring about substantive change. And so, on June 6th, the Black Homes UK Instagram account was born.