in Furniture, Interiors

Atelier Areti lights

Hello everyone, I hope you are well and ready for another inspiring week.
As usual I’m taking advantage of the fact that my little boy Giulio is sleeping and use these precious night hours to work and gather ideas. I am selecting some lights for one of my clients and I will definitely include the Mimosa Pendant by Atelier Areti. 
Atelier Areti is a breath of fresh air in a world that seems to be  dominated by vintage industrial lights or by contemporary well known classical designs nowadays. Founded by two pretty and extremely qualified Austrian/French sisters, Atelier Areti proposes poetic pieces, simple elegant lights that carry the charm of 1930’s cinema and a certain oriental refinement.
in Interiors

People who don’t believe that less is more – Part II

Considering the success of my previous post about people who don’t believe that less is more, I have picked 4 other interiors where colours, patterns, textures and forms are not abound.
Some are, in my book, too much (see the two photos at the bottom), some make more sense even if I believe that these busy interiors can look extremely chaotic if your mess is not coordinated with rest. A room like the top right looks good when styled for the photo shoot but how does it look when it is ‘naturally’ untidy? What do you think?
in Interiors

People who don’t believe that less is more

Photos Bjorn Wallander (Homes & Gardens)
Photo by James Merrell (Living Etc)
Interior by India Mahdavi
Photo by Matthew Williams (Living Etc)
When I am confronted by some interiors I feel puzzled. I don’t know if they are amazing or horrible. For instance, even if I can see a criteria behind the choices made, I find the above rooms unpleasant. Thankfully interior decoration is down to taste but I think that such a combination of colors, patterns and forms will tire you after a short period of time.
What do you think?
in Interiors

Possessed N.1 in London

IMG_7636 IMG_7582
A few days ago Tina Bernstein, a talented polyglot interior designer, posted on her blog Colourliving a few photos of Possessed N.1. a shop near the Islington Farmers’ Market in London. This place caught my attention not only because it is full of quirky vintage treasures but also because the boundaries between the house and the shop are not clear. The owner,  Tania Rowling, an artist, decided to open Possessed N.1 a few years ago with her sister Cindy, attracted by the idea of having a space where the objects and clothes collected in a lifetime could be displayed and put on sale. The idea itself is not original but what it is truly fascinating is the fact that the kitchen is downstairs and is part of the shop. As she says : “Having worked in restaurants for years I have a big network of chefs and catering friends to draw on, Moro taught me to arrange and organize private functions and Sam & Sam Clark and other chefs from Moro are going to come and cook here, so that’s really exciting” (read the entire interview here). What Tania Rowling proposes is a total mix of experiences: in the same space you can shop, socialize, listen to music, spying on her life, be inspired by the past, try on clothes or accessories, cook, eat and drink surrounded by fascinating objects. 
(Photos courtesy of Colourliving).
in Interiors, Ispiration

Philippe Starck’s Mama Shelter Hotels

Hotels are an endless source of inspiration;  the new hotels Mama Shelter designed by Philippe Starck are affordable enough to allow you to spend a few nights there and have a proper look around, steal some ideas. Philippe Starck is a bit like Kate Moss, he is everywhere and inevitably his omnipresence has became a bit annoying and has made him less interesting, however he  is  undoubtedly so talented and has an eye for setting trends that he often comes up with great visions like the Mama Shelter Hotels pictured in the photos above. I really like the white and yellow stripy wall in the first photo, it gives meaning to a space that otherwise would look like a bare corridor. I love the million people wallpaper in the second photo with the two classic armchairs upholstered in a funky orange. The graffiti and writings on the black bedroom walls remind me of a  blackboard, a massive trend now, and the cartoon character plastic masks lights add a playful touch. I love the splashes of lemon yellow like the football table in the lounge or the wall paint in the bedroom, cleverly combined with a salmon pink/orange. Philippe Starck is a 64 years old boy who likes to inject some lightness in what he creates. 
The hip hotels (at Istanbul, Paris, Marseille and Lion) are of course a success, remember to book early if you want to go.
P.S: Yes the colourful things hanging from the ceiling in the third photo (from the top) are inflatable rings.
in Interiors

Patrick Blanc’s vertical gardens and my next house




My plan is, if I continue to follow my New Year resolutions, I will be so successful i will be able to afford a new house that will satisfy my ever evolving needs and desires. First of all, I have to say that I like houses on one level, they make me feel better, perhaps because deep down I am a control freak. The next house I am going to buy will have to be bigger (my current home is 70 sq metres and I need at least another 40) to host our numerous guests more comfortably, to allow me to do my new job, done partly from home, and provide my son with more space to make untidy! It will also need a big terrace, spacious enough to organize parties and to enjoy the wonderful roman weather. Ideally it should have high ceilings and/or period details, a space with character in a nice building. To complete the picture, it would like it to have a vertical garden or a view onto a green courtyard like in  Patrick Blanc‘s house pictured in the first 4 photos above (by Frederic Ducout, as seen in Grazia Casa May 2013). I might need a bit more than some good resolutions….
Patrick Blanc is an eccentric botanist who allegedly invented the green wall or vertical garden (this guy is so into plants that he died his hair green and his clothing is inspired by a forest). 
The decor of his parisian home is intentionally bare and simple because the main decor of the house is nature.  Decorating with plants is ideal because they go well with all kind of styles and materials, looking at them calms your spirit and they give such vibrant, unique colours.
If Patrick Blanc‘s dream was to bring gardens indoors, Ian Simpson‘s was to bring trees into his living room: he planted some olive trees in his house with a breathtaking view of Manchester (by Reto Guntli, as seen in Grazia Casa May 2013). A bit extreme and definitely a  tricky feat but undoubtedly impressive. 
Do you have any plants at home? Are they limp hanging baskets? Would you like a vertical garden if you could afford it?
in Color Inspiration, Interiors, Ispiration

Concrete : Casa do Coto in Portugal

I have been feeling like using concrete in one of my projects for a while now but I haven’t had the right project yet and when I mention the word concrete to any of my clients I can read panic in their eyes: they picture themselves living in a cold, bare, hard looking box. I believe doling concrete out and mixing it wisely with other materials and vintage pieces or antiques takes the edge off. Concrete in fact has a light grey not uniform colour that goes with basically everything but it needs to be “dressed” with warm furnishings.
The Casa Do Coto Hotel in Cedofeita Porto, Portugal partly does it. The historical facade hides a modern concrete interior characterized by baroque mirrors, vintage chairs, beautiful wooden pieces and engraved writing on the ceilings that give a new perspective to the rooms. 
in Interiors, Ispiration

Houses full of memories

I was recently invited to a light cosy house and I took a few photos to show you. Since the Egyptian and Greek times, for centuries, the main worry for men who could afford to think about those sorts of things was to leave behind a legacyPowerful men have been building grand monuments for thousands of years so we don’t forget about them; the pyramids, forums, grand tombs. Our times are much more ephemeral and now we are used to changing houses, furniture, partners and jobs when our grandfathers spent their lives in the same places, with the same women, doing the some jobs. Being lucky enough to inherit some nice quality pieces is, in my opinion, invaluable.

This house was full of furniture, paintings, and items that carry so many memories and feelings and make it unique and charming.
in Interiors

How did I miss this : Penhaligon’s, Regent Street, London

How the hell did I miss Penhaligon‘s new shop in Regent Street the last time I was in London? Unforgivable. The new store designed by Christopher Jenner is eccentric and super glamorous. The space presents a real mix of materials (basically all of them: wood, tiles, textiles, leather, golden details, mirror etc) and styles assembled in an amazing way. The main colours are purple, fuchsia, white and lime. Penhaligon‘s new boutique succeeds in doing the impossible:it is over the top but elegant, it is exotic but very Edwardian, it is old fashion but it is modern.  
Images courtesy of Christopher Jenner.
in Interiors

Hobbs Barbers Shop, London

I have just spent a few snowy days in London seeking inspiration, working (not much really) and wandering around with my beloved friends.
Speaking about creative ways to hang pictures (see my previous post), I find the wall of this little quirky barber shop by Borough Market in London very clever. What makes it  captivating is the overall arrangement and the colours of the walls, not the objects themselves. The red paneling, the purple frame and the touches of gold and yellow really enhance the objects displayed ;  the same wall in cream would be so much more insignificant.