Kate Humble's Home Truths - the TV presenter explains why thinks she fails at being a good host

TV presenter Kate Humble gets up close & personal with her home

Kate Humble eating at a kitchen table
(Image credit: Andrew Montgomery)

TV presenter Kate Humble lives in the Wye Valley with her husband Ludo and their two dogs.

What’s your favourite time of the day at home?

Very first thing in the morning. I live on a Welsh hill and the mornings are (almost) always really beautiful. I usually get up just before dawn, have a cup of tea and then go outside with the dogs and stand and take in our beautiful view. 

I then go and feed all my animals, and everyone’s really pleased to see you when you’re feeding them! So I go and see my goats, hen, ducks and pigs and it’s just a lovely way to start the day. No phones, no screens, just outdoors fresh air and happy animals

Where’s your happy place at home?

It’s my vegetable patch. I’m not very good at growing vegetables but I always give it a go. I’ve got a few raised beds that a bunch of us got together and built and I have a greenhouse that makes me feel really grown up and that I’m almost related to Monty Don.

Kate Humble eating ice cream in a garden

(Image credit: Andrew Montgomery)

What's on your bedside table?

I have a proper, old fashioned, alarm clock. I’ve had this tiny digital clock for years and I take it everywhere I go - I never use my phone as an alarm.

What’s your home pet peeve?

The fact that, if you’ve got dogs, you can spend ages washing and cleaning the house and as soon as they come in everything’s covered with mud and dog hair again! 

You’ve either just got to not have dogs or try and turn a blind eye to mud and dog hair, and I’m getting better at turning a blind eye!

Kate Humble making a cake with eggs and oranges in a country kitchen

(Image credit: Andrew Montgomery)

What chore do love doing?(and what do you hate doing?)

I don’t iron. My excuse is that I don’t wear anything which merits ironing, which is kind of true. But I just don’t, can’t, won’t iron. I love cleaning the kitchen, partly because when we moved here the kitchen wasn’t very functional, and we lived with it for eight years. 

We redid it about six years ago and I’m still so in love with it. It’s not particularly swanky, but I’ve now got storage space and worksurfaces which I had to go without for so long, so it gives me so much pleasure.

Buy Kate Humble's latest book here...

Do you think you’re a good host?

Yes, but only because I host unashamedly my way. We don’t do three courses, we don’t do stiff linen, we don’t do dressing up. 

We have kitchen suppers, with whatever I feel like cooking, it won’t be anything fancy-schmancy - I refuse to be a galley slave so I’m not going to fiddle about with food for ages while everyone else is having fun. 

I don’t like hosting big parties, but I love having a small gathering around the kitchen table. What makes me fail as a good host is that by about 10.30 I can’t pretend I’m not tired anymore! 

But for that short period of time, I try to feed everyone really well, make sure their glasses are full and be a sparkling conversationalist.

Kate Humble eating at a kitchen table

(Image credit: Andrew Montgomery)

What do you do if you have time at home on your own?

I walk. I live on top of a hill off a dirt track in the woods and can walk pretty much in any direction without going anywhere near a road. 

My Welsh sheepdog, Teg, although she is even more middle aged than me and getting a little bit creaky, she still loves a really good walk. So we head out the back door and go wherever we feel like.

Quick Fire questions with Kate Humble

Kate Humble making drop scone pancakes on an Aga

(Image credit: Andrew Montgomery)

1. Shoes - On or off in the house? Off because I basically live in wellies or slippers!

2. Eat at the table or on laps? Both

3. Lighting - bright or moody? Lamps rather than lots of overhead

4. Quick shower or long bath? Depends on the day

5. Room decor - colourful or neutral? Neutral walls with colourful decor and artwork

Her latest book, Home Cooked: Recipes from the Farm by Kate Humble is out now

Thea Babington-Stitt
Managing Editor

Thea Babington-Stitt is the Managing Editor for Ideal Home. Thea has been working across some of the UK’s leading interiors titles for around 10 years.

She started working on these magazines and websites after graduating from City University London with a Masters in Magazine Journalism. Before moving to Ideal Home, Thea was News and Features Editor at Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc and Country Homes & Interiors.