Countess-Spencer-Althorp

Earl Spencer's wife opens up about life at Princess Diana's family's stately home

Countess Spencer has made some big changes at Althorp House

Chloe Best

Earl Spencer's wife has opened up about the big changes she has made at Althorp House since moving in full time. Countess Karen Spencer, who previously split her time between Northamptonshire and Los Angeles, said she felt "instantly at home" in the house with its 550-acre estate.

Speaking to Town & Country magazine, Charles' third wife said she has done some "major feng shui" on the house, a concept that is also loved by the Duchess of Sussex to change the energy of a room. Karen has also shaken up the classic English country house weekend, saying: "My favourite thing about life here is the English country house weekend, which is a completely foreign concept to those of us from North America."

Countess Spencer's wife has opened up about home life at Althorp (Photo: Town & Country/Philip Sinden)

Karen added: "When I moved in, I made them a bit more glam: we switched dinner on Saturday nights to black tie, because everyone wants to dress up - the venue demands it. Plus, it’s a great excuse for me to wear the Spencer jewellery."

MORE: The Queen Mother's former Caribbean retreat is up for sale

The jewellery includes a diamond necklace given by Queen Anne to the Duchess of Marlborough, during a relationship which was recently portrayed by Olivia Colman and Rachel Weisz in Oscar-winning film The Favourite.

The interview features in Town & Country magazine (Photo: Town & Country/Philip Sinden)

The 46-year-old also said she loved the history of the estate. "The portraits on the walls and the furniture around me are a constant reminder that I am a tiny part of a very big lineage. I hope that I can make a small contribution to the continuation of that legacy," she explained.

GALLERY: Inside the Queen's home at Buckingham Palace

Earl Spencer married Karen Gordon at Althorp in 2011, a year after they first met. They have a six-year-old daughter called Lady Charlotte Diana, who was named after Charles' late sister Princess Diana, whose final resting place is at the family home. Karen is also a mum to two daughters from her marriage to Hollywood producer Mark Gordon, while Charles has four children from his marriage to Victoria Aitken – Lady Kitty, Lady Amelia, Lady Eliza and Louis Spencer. 

The summer issue of Town & Country is on sale on Thursday 16 May 2019.

Loading the player...

Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.

More on: