Step inside cake-maker extraordinaire Lily ‘Vanilli’ Jones’s east London home to see the books, bottles, pictures, and home furnishings that mean the world to her.

Jones set up her bakery and cake business in 2008 just off Columbia Road in east London and has become best-known for her outlandish, extra and often towering designs, that have brought in orders from clients like Lady Gaga, Madonna, and Elton John. She’s been dubbed the “A-list and fashion crowd’s baker of choice” and in January created this other worldly turquoise centre piece for Amelia Dimoldenberg’s 30th birthday party. Since 2010, on Sundays Vanilli opens up her bakery as a cafe, and recently opened a second venue – in Tbilisi, Georgia. She is also co-founder of the long-running YBF awards, which launched in 2012.

Here, in her own words, are the seven things that matter most to her right now.

Lily Vanilli at her home in east London, photographed by Michaël Protin for Something Curated, April 2024.

The Queen of Cooks and Some Kings – Rosa Lewis

Rosa Lewis was always one of my food heroines – she rose from a scullery maid in Leyton to owning the Cavendish hotel and be favourite chef to Edward VII and kings and aristocracy around the globe. She was a rebel and a pioneer, known for her foul mouth and wild parties as much as her cooking. There are a few great biographies of her, but this book was the only one told in her narrative and dictated to the author. It’s super rare but I found this copy in the Post Office for 50p.

Bobby Baker

Bobby is a feminist artist who made sculptures and artworks out of cake in the 1970s, and I worked with her on recreating one of her famous installations last year at Tate Britain. She’s a icon to me, and when we met we bonded over a shared love of creating weird sculptures from cake. She gave me this copy of her retrospective work and its full of delights. 

Pool table

I have always wanted a pool table in my home – it’s my favourite way to hang out with friends or my godchildren. It’s so much better than a TV for a common living space and I love long afternoons and evenings chatting and playing pool with people I love. I looked at second-hand pub tables, but in the end I had this one made – its carved oak and the slate is a light lavender grey and it’s a dream come true.


My business partner in Tbilisi has a wonderful wine estate and we collaborated on this wine which has just arrived – it’s a 2022 Saperavi from Khaketi and I’m really happy with how it turned out. My friend Phil did the artwork and it’s available to buy now.


These shoes are from Western Affair and they are glorious and super comfortable to dance and run around in. They’re by a female designer, which I think really helps!

Picture by Ric

My friend Ric drew this based on something I once said and I love it even though I dropped it ages ago and do need to get it reframed. Sorry Ric.


This was a gift from my dear friend Yassa who lived with me for a brief while lately and left me this in his place. 

Lily Vanilli’s bakery is located just off Columbia Road, at 6 The Courtyard, Ezra Street, London E2 7RH. Header image by Michaël Protin.

Stay up to date with Something Curated