Christine Yorath - Yorkshire based interior designer

PUBLISHED: 00:00 01 December 2015

Christine Yorath

Christine Yorath

Joan Russell Photography

Jo Haywood meets an interior designer who specialises in making houses into homes. Photographs by Joan Russell

Christine Yorath with clients Karen and Mike Luty at their Harewood home near LeedsChristine Yorath with clients Karen and Mike Luty at their Harewood home near Leeds

Christine Yorath is a woman of substance and style. She’s smart, funny, warm and has a real way with words, drawing you into her stories with colourful descriptions, verve and an unblinking eye for detail.

And it’s these very same skills that make her such a successful interior designer, specialising in creating bespoke, comfortable homes that reflect the unique dynamic of each client’s life.

‘I always make a point of getting to know my clients; how they live, and how they want to live,’ she explained. ‘As a designer, I have a relationship with people, not with their house.

‘Some designers have a definitive look, but I’m not one of them. I don’t want people to look at a house and think ‘that’s a Christine Yorath’. I want each property to be unique – as unique as the people who call it home.’

She’s currently working with Karen and Mike Luty on their house in Harewood, Leeds. She joined the project at the development stage, ensuring the building had the right layout and spec from the get-go and, when the Lutys came on-board as buyers, began working with them to turn the house into their ideal home. When the last accessory is finally sourced, bought and placed, Christine will have spent three years on the project.

‘The earlier you can bring a designer in, the fewer expensive mistakes you make,’ she said. ‘With Karen and Mike, I came on-board very early. In the months since, I’ve helped them with every design decision, from carpets and curtains to coat hooks and wine racks.’

Christine is obviously not someone who shies away from hard work, putting in endless hours on a project while juggling several other schemes and enjoying a busy social life. She is, frankly, not a stereotypical former WAG.

She was married to footballer Terry Yorath, who played for Leeds United and managed the Welch national team amongst others, for 36 years. They had four children, TV presenter Gabby (Logan), model and Circe du Soleil performer Louise, property developer Jordan and Daniel, who tragically died in 1992 at the age of 15 from hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, an inherited form of heart disease.

You only have to spend five minutes in Christine’s company to know how important her family are to her. There are numerous photographs – some posed, some fun family snapshots – around her stunning Leeds home, an extended Art Deco property in the north-east suburb of Shadwell. And her conversation is peppered with anecdotes about her children, grandchildren and various members of her extended family.

‘My mum was very house-proud,’ she said, while discussing the early stages of her passion for interior design. ‘We always said that dust was not allowed to land in our house.’

She might have every copy of Architectural Digest from 1973 onwards but, perhaps surprisingly, Christine’s first success was actually in the beauty rather than property business. She opened Yorkshire’s first stand-alone beauty salon in Wetherby and is still active in the sector today as European distributor of the Metrin beauty brand.

The signs were there from a young age, however, that her future lay in property. When she bought her first house – a five-bedroom detached – in Adel at the age of 20, she wasn’t prepared to sit back and let others make design decisions for her.

‘It was a new-build and I made a point of getting to know the site foreman,’ she said. ‘I’d get him to make alterations and additions to my house so it wouldn’t be the same as everyone else’s. I even persuaded him to paint the bathroom dark brown. I won’t tell you what he called my colour choice, but he did it.’

Christine bought her first renovation project at the age of 39 and started turning round modest Leeds back-to-backs. She then turned her gaze on the city centre, developing flats in York Place before launching a game-changing scheme in Wellington Street, creating an elite collection of luxury apartments that smashed through the city’s property price ceiling.

‘My philosophy was – and still is – to make every property unique,’ she said. ‘That’s the prime reason those apartments sold so well – buyers knew their home was not the same as their neighbours’.’

Christine continues to utilise her keen eye for design and her passion for creating homes as individual as their owners in her work today. At 65, she’s still putting in the hours and still showing no sign of slowing down.

‘When I was 60 the kids asked if I was thinking of retiring, but it’s not something that appeals to me,’ she said. ‘We live a long time in my family. My uncle died recently at the age of 106 and my auntie is 99. I could have 40 more years of heating bills to pay, so I’d better carry on.’ w

Find out more about Christine Yorath’s design studio at or by calling 0113 265 0979. She’s happy to chat (and the kettle is invariably on).


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Yorkshire Life visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Yorkshire Life staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Yorkshire Life account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Homes & Gardens

Leading Yorkshire estate agents rewarded with prestigious title

Read more

Have you found it, the place you would never leave? One of these outstanding properties could be it

Read more

Beautiful gardens are both captured on canvas and saved by campaigners

Read more

Properties in wonderful country settings you wouldn’t want to miss.

Read more

Ad Feature 4 ways to keep your home cosy this Autumn

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

As we head into Autumn, the change in season is all around us. From the leaves on the trees turning burnt orange and fiery red, to dark mornings and nights bookending our days. As we put the clocks back an hour to battle the darkness, here’s some top tips on how you can keep your home warm and costs down this Autumn.

Read more

Ad Feature Nant Lodges - an idyllic secret hideaway in North Wales

Monday, September 24, 2018

A stunning new development of ten luxury lodges at Plas Farm Caravan Park, Nant Lodges is the ultimate in holiday home retreats.

Read more

High quality barn conversions with fabulous countryside surroundings

Read more

Topics of Interest

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Local Business Directory

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Property Search