Arabella by Tempaper. Photo courtesy of Tempaper.
Penchants usually gravitate to the latest and greatest, but one tried and true material continues to be a magical catalyst for lifestyle.
Subtle or bold, classic or contemporary, shiny or opaque, wallpaper has evolved to be design’s magic wand — able to add pizzazz, lend a mellow undertone or inject just the right touch of coziness to any room.
Uniquely versatile, it enables consumers to fashion an interior that captures their individuality. It allows for unlimited customization as well as the creation of personalized living spaces, even adapting for children and pets without compromising on aesthetics. And for every budget from DIY to bespoke, there is a product.
“People want to LOVE their home. They want comfort and convenience, but do not want to sacrifice chic,” says San Francisco designer Jay Jeffers.
“There is a strong desire among consumers for original, authentic design that goes along with their vision for their house,” explains Joyce Romanoff, CEO of Maya Romanoff, a manufacturer of luxury wall coverings.
Ask designers about wallpaper and they invariably chorus, “it’s not your grandmother’s wallpaper,” a truism heard so frequently that it’s almost become a cliché. What is truly amazing is how much wallpaper ends up in homes today, adding a visual depth impossible to achieve with paint. Murals are back. So are individual walls showcased with a stunning texture or print.
And walls are only the beginning of today’s wallpaper story. “Trends indicate that the consumer is looking to personalize space through the creative use of wallpapers beyond the walls. Backings for bookcases, shelves, customized furnishings and ceilings all enter the realms of possibility.
While full room wraps, murals and feature walls still dominate the world of captivating designer installations, these small impact pieces allow for strong style statements without huge pattern or space commitments,” explains Carol Miller, content marketing manager for York Wallcoverings, a manufacturer with 125 years of innovation.
If the mention of wallpaper conjures visions of the flat, one-dimensional rolls common little more than 10 years ago, it’s time to refresh that image. “For many years wallpaper was something many of our clients avoided, but today, it is being rediscovered as an exciting way to introduce the color and patterns many homeowners are now embracing. And there are more wallpaper options out there than ever, thanks to advances in technology,” shares Elissa Morgante, founding partner of Chicago architecture and design firm Morgante-Wilson.
Dating back to decorated rice paper in China as early as 200 B.C., wallpaper has a long history that continues to evolve, with each century, each decade, adding innovations in materials, finishes, production methods and artistry. The most recent reinvention of wallpaper began more than a decade ago, but changes over the last few years have been especially remarkable. Old-school techniques such as block printing and silk screening continue, but the end result seems entirely new. Modern machinery creates precise designs, and new dyes impart richer vibrant hues. Diverse materials from wood and sand to crystals, shells, fibers, beads, even glass add depth.
Left: Jewel Tones; Middle: Metallic; Right: Soft Organic
Wallpaper sample photos courtesy York Wallcoverings.
“Manufacturers can now digitally create the beautiful, luxurious look of expensive hand-painted or hand-blocked papers, or embed wallpapers with materials such as mica, glass beads, or even capiz shells to add interest and texture,” says Morgante.
“Over the last decade, we have diversified our product mix by expanding the types of materials we use. We have focused on making our processes more efficient, cost-effective and sustainable, while maintaining our handcraft and luxury appeal,” explains David Berkowitz, EVP of product development at Maya Romanoff, the largest manufacturer of handcrafted wall coverings in the U.S. Their gallery includes wool, burlap, silk and other natural fibers as well as precious metals and wood. Designs are often intricate, requiring an artisan’s touch. For example, papers in the precious metals collection often employ a time-honored method in which metallic leaves are hand applied to a paper backing with chopsticks. An ultra-modern topcoat prevents tarnishing or oxidizing, allowing for easier maintenance.
Textural papers continue to be in demand. The effect can be rustic or refined. In addition to traditional hemp, jute, sea grass, bamboo and raffia, grass cloth might integrate a variety of other materials. Additionally, says K. Tyler, partner and designer at Morgante Wilson, there are woven papers that look like linen on the wall or a variation of silk.
Schemes inspired by traditional designs (dare we mention chintz) have returned, but today’s execution is nothing like the dingy muted tones of yesteryear. Colors are vibrant, often using multiple shades of the same hue. Botanicals have also blossomed into an important trend, inspired by a growing passion for nature and biophilia. Look for splashy leaves and fronds or impressionist-inspired trees and flowers in soft tones. “I am also seeing a change from the crisp, bold large-scale patterns into a more abstract brush-stroked look. But with some of these styles, you’ll need to be aware you won’t have a side match, and each panel is distinguished,” says Christopher Grubb, president of Arch-Interiors Design Group in Beverly Hills.
Top left: Precious metal inlaid; Top right: Hand-finished wood veneer, Ajiro Fanfare. Bottom: Tribal Print from Ronald Redding Handcrafted Naturals collection.
Photos of wallpaper production and sample by Maya Romanoff.
“There are so many things technology has allowed us to do today. We can do wall covering now that looks like the real material, but it’s made out of vinyl,” says Tony Sutton, owner of Est Est, Inc., an award-winning design firm in Scottsdale. Sutton illustrates with examples of wallpaper made from ultra-thin cork or micro-layers of slate. Additionally, he says, “I can take any photograph and then make a giant custom wallpaper out of it.”
Options today range from rugged vinyls to bespoke designs and hand-painted silks with prices that can exceed $1,000 a roll. “Vinyls are typically less expensive, but super durable. Many of them are rated for commercial use and sold in wider widths,” says Mondi.
“I am a huge fan of using vinyl wall coverings,” says Grubb, who does commercial as well as residential projects. “The color palette is enormous. There are silk and grass cloth looks, wovens, textures and embossed patterns. It’s incredibly durable and easy to maintain.”
“On the other end of the spectrum, you would find hand-painted wall coverings. There are custom made, high-end and truly artisan products that typically replicate a faux finish or mural. In between is where most wallpapers reside. Digital printing is typically very affordable and can often be done on different background materials,” says Mondi.
Design is only part of what consumers want. Sustainability and ease of use are equally important. Upmarket to DIY consumers demand sustainability, which includes efforts to minimize the footprint of manufacturing, observes Miller. Beyond no VOCs, ozone-depleting chemicals or cadmium or mercury, York Wallcoverings also uses water-based inks and coatings and smokeless, non-polluting inks. Additionally, there is a push toward sustainable materials, including cork, natural grasses, leaves, wood veneer, even glass beads made from recycled windshield glass.
Ease of Use
“Now every level and type of wallpaper concerns itself with ease of application and removability,” says Miller. “Even nonwoven unpasted backings used most often by designers remove in full strips.”
A potential game-changer for the industry came with Tempaper, which has revolutionized the concept of peel and stick papers. There is nothing stodgy about these designs, which run the gamut from traditional classics such as chinoiserie to glam to bohemian. They also tap into creations by well-known designers such as Bobby Berk and Genevieve Gorder. The company also offers panels and murals as large as 8 feet by 10 feet. Some designs such as Arabella, part of the Zoe Bios collection, are inspired by artists such as Jean Michel Basquiat.
Founded by twin sisters Jennifer Matthews and Julia Au, Tempaper is an ideal solution for someone renting, as designer Jewel Marlowe discovered. “Recently we rented a high-end beach home in Jamestown, Rhode Island, for 10 months. This was just long enough that I wanted to add some personality to some of the spaces in order for it to feel like home. However, I was very aware that whatever I used needed to be quickly removable. Luckily, I found some beautiful Tempaper designs to personalize and beautify some of our rooms,” she shares.
Birds are flocking to wallpaper this year. Graham & Brownexpresses this theme in Tori Teal.
Photos courtesy of Graham & Brown.
New additions to Tempaper’s line up include designs from Wright Kitchen and holographic decals from Bobby Berk. This year, the company also introduced a collection of vinyl floor rugs.
Tempaper does seem to add a “now you see it, now you don’t” ability to wallpaper’s extensive resume, making it a truly magical material.
Photos courtesy Katrien Van Der Schueren.
Katrien Van Der Schueren is the founder and creative visionary behind Voila! Creative Studio, a visual laboratory where she envisions, creates and fabricates a full range of bespoke fine art, objects, furnishings, lighting, event and stage sets, and accessories.
In the grand scheme of her career, designer/artist Katrien Van Der Schueren says that her move to America in 2002, specifically Los Angeles, was the first main challenge she met that led her to where she is now. With her experience working in a variety of fields, from the European Commission to marketing, she says that she felt obliged to reinvent herself and that this new world gave her “the opportunity and the audacity to follow a new path.”
Through perseverance, courage and a “huge learning curve,” she remains the leader of Voila!, known as a visual laboratory with endless possibilities. “We are storytellers and translate it into material form. We are creative problem solvers that make the project happen,” says Van Der Schueren.
What about art and design draws you into doing it every day?
It’s an intuitive thing, I think.… I didn’t really think it through. It just felt natural to me and I followed my path of learning and exploring and fine tuning the direction as I went along.
I love working and exploring materials and their possibilities. I love discovering new textures, new techniques, new colors, new color combinations, new designs, new styles … and in my job the learning and discovery is endless. I love the storytelling [aspect] when we work on projects. Imagining the environment pieces will go to, who will use it, look at it and how to tell that story and make that story happen with shapes and form and materials.
What influence, if any, do you get from living in California?
So many things. California is such a melting pot of cultures providing so many creative impulses on a daily basis. There are so many different influences to draw from here that it’s hard not to get inspired every day. I still strongly feel like an immigrant on Discovery Road.
Since we arrived in LA, the city has evolved so much. It breathes artistic energy in so many domains, from food to music to artisanal crafts to high-end design. Nature is another big part of California’s inspiration. The ocean, for example, I mean who can resist its magic? And what about the vastness of land in between places when you drive out of the city and what about the evenness of the light and its brightn
To keep inspiration alive, Van Der Schueren says she needs to connect with the outdoors, whether it’s taking a drive, traveling abroad or spending time with her family outside the studio, “so when I step back in I feel re-energized and spin my wheels on the right things.”
What do you usually draw inspiration from?
Literally everything or anything that kind of stops me in my tracks. That can be the shape of a leaf in the garden, a lyric or beat in a song, a shade of a ceramic cup, my kids’ world, an art installation, a set of a movie I am watching. Anything that stops me and draws my attention.
Tell me about Voila!’s conception and how it operates today. What was the original mission/goal of the studio?
I started as a picker. As that’s where it intuitively felt right for me to start. Learning styles, periods, et cetera. Then my intuition just led me to start making, first by combining finds and turning them into either art or furniture. Basically, I do have a lot of something I found and it inspired me to make something with it. Then I wanted to learn more techniques and what I could do with materials, started hiring people and learning about that process and its ups and downs with growing pains. Clients would ask me to custom make furniture and art for them and I gradually learned what I liked and disliked, and it all evolved like that with some very risky steps in between, just out of some gut feeling that that was the next step to take. A lot of mistakes on the way, of course, getting back up and moving forward towards a clearer direction.
When it comes to designing art for a project, what is the most important element you have to remember? Does this differ depending on the type of space you are working in?
Each project is its own. When we start an art project, I look at the story first. The visual story (the interior design choices and the environment and architecture) as well as the audience it’s for. Those parameters will define the art choices. Of course, the location and the environmental conditions are often key as well when it comes down to choosing the materials to work in, and the type of use will also define possibilities.
Is there a piece of art in your
own home that you would never consider selling?
Almost all of them. The pieces I have at home are part of the fabric of my life. I am emotionally connected to them and they make a lot of sense in my home visually.
What would be your dream project or a piece you’ve always wanted to start (or finish)?
Oh boy. A dream project would be that I get unconditional creative freedom and unlimited budget to design and fabricate all the art, and custom-make all the furniture for a unique experiential boutique hotel that also has a music venue on the premises as well as some original and unique culinary opportunities (restaurants/bars, et cetera).
What advice would you give to someone pursuing a career in art or design?
Follow your gut feeling. Only by working your way through you can achieve results and fine-tune direction. Be you
Zany patterns. Punchy palettes. Combinations of materials from the concrete to metallic.
As Claire Elsworth of Claire Elsworth Design notes, the eccentric spirit of Maximalism is both magical and rebellious. It encourages traditional rules of design to be broken and conventional boundaries to be overstepped. From patterned wallpapers and dark paint to a velvet sofa with an eclectic mix of textures pillows, the goal is to be courageous in your design, and to love the “more” aesthetic.
“‘More’ is a love and appreciation of pattern, color, collection and curation,” Elsworth notes, “with a sheer joy of fusing, contrasting, styling and layering all that gloriousness together.”
Photos courtesy Sasha Bikoff.
Maximalism has been embracing “the more” of design since the 1980s with the creation of Memphis Milano in the 1980s, a legendary postmodern design group that championed the style and made it a staple in the industry. Author and design journalist Claire Bingham notes in her book, More is More: Memphis, Maximalism and New Wave Design, that after experiencing the “riot of color and pattern” indigenous to styles like Memphis, the 90s saw a rise of Minimalism, a stark contrast with designers such as John Pawson and Calvin Klein focusing on purity and simplicity.
“There has always been minimal versus maximal throughout time, but the rise of the Memphis/80s style was a kickback from the elegance of mid-century design and a desire to rethink how objects could look,” Bingham writes. Although minimalism has been an ever-developing presence in today’s world, the Memphis style and Maximalism as a whole has found its way back into the hearts of young impressionable designers looking to become expressive in a more vivacious, free-spirited way.
In More is More, Bingham spoke with a host of contemporary designers, as well as Peter Shire and George Snowden, some of the original founders of the Memphis group, who truly embrace and understand the spirit of Maximalism. “It’s not so much to do with a style,” she says. “Maximalism could look like anything — romantic and frilly, graphic patterns, disco … It’s like playing dress up for the home.” To quote the vivacious Iris Apfel, “more is more and less is a bore.”
Famed New York designer Sasha Bikoff was dubbed the “interior designer for the young and wealthy” by The New York Times. Bikoff affirms that she was at the forefront of Maximalism’s revival when she started her firm seven years ago, a revival she credits to the growing millennial culture. She says that like anything in history there’s an action and a direct reaction. Instead of creating simplistic looks that can be easily replicated for the masses, younger designers and people want to create spaces and live within spaces that are unique, that share a likeness of themselves, a desire that has stemmed such creative outlets as Instagram, Pinterest and other social media channels.
Photo courtesy © Claire Elsworth 2017
To heighten the effectiveness of Maximalism, Bikoff says that one of the most important aspects of this style type is the use of color, noting that in her own designs color helps bring out an emotional response. She notes that it’s important to surround yourself with colors and objects, patterns, and textures that make us happy and bring life into your home. “The same way I dress with fashion — as my fashion choices are bold and confident — is how I want my rooms to feel,” she says.
Just like personal fashion, each Maximalist designer and design is different and based on both creative taste and what each designer finds inspiring. For example, Bikoff’s aesthetic can be derived from 18th-century French Rococo, 1960s Space Age Modern, 1970s French Modernism and 1980s Italian Memphis Milano. An affinity for new experiences, her love of travel helps add to her ever-developing color palette, which you can see in her projects. “Marrakesh is a place I travel to all the time, and the colors of the spices you find there are so amazing you can see them all in a color palette, from bright turmerics to smoky paprikas,” Bikoff says.
Photo courtesy Claire Bingham.
Elsworth’s firm focuses on luxury wallpaper and home décor, and is known for intricate yet bold Maximalist features in every design. She hand sketches her designs, which are inspired by her short concept stories about an imaginary Duchess called Violacea Macrobothrys and her beautiful old aristocratic house — “a Maximalist treasure trove paradise!” she says. These stories weave through six collections of wallpapers and cushions, displaying both Elsworth’s love for drawing as well as her favorite aspects of Maximalism.
“I’ve always been drawn to anything ornately detailed, whether it be textiles, interiors, art, or historical architectural details,” Elsworth says. “So, I was naturally drawn to the Maximalist style long before I even knew there was a name for it.”
To embrace Maximalism in an everyday space there is a variety of ways one can incorporate aspects of the style. Bikoff says that some of the best Maximalist interiors are just showing off pieces from trips you’ve taken all in one space, even if they do not particularly go together. “The whole idea of Maximalism is that it’s the kind of space for a true collector, a space that tells a story.”
Photo courtesy Sasha Bikoff.
Photo courtesy Claire Bingham.
Ask any stylist the key to a successful shoot and you’ll find yourself in a conversation about lighting.
More than just aesthetics, it possesses its own emotional language, writing atmosphere and warmth into contemporary interiors. If you or your home are feeling a little under the weather, consider experimenting some with some new lighting. You might be surprised at the life it brings.
To help you get started, Chaplins Furniture has created a shortlist of the best new launches this season…
On the Move
Freed from the shackles of cables, today’s best designer lighting its portable, fun and ready to move. Opt for the comfort of a time-honoured lantern or keep things contemporary with a colourful new BELLHOP.
Ideal for study nooks, reading or outdoor soirees, these versatile luminaires reimagine the intimacy of candles for the modern age.
All clean lines and essential silhouettes, sleek Scandi finds beauty in the bare minimum, offering a serene reprieve from the clutter of contemporary life. Leading the subtle style stakes are the new POST WALL LIGHTS by Muuto.
Thanks to a system of magnetic wall brackets, they can be arranged in striking linear configurations, with 360 degree swivelling bulbs and touch-controlled dimming.
Back to Black
In 2020, designers are experimenting with classic drama, revealing a host of iconic designs in sleek matt-black colourways. Seductive and bold, the new palette feels fitting for this time of year, updating winter homes with a little monochrome magic. A new favorite? The New PH Artichoke in BLACK, a daring design statement if ever there was one.
We couldn’t sign off without mentioning a handful of new retro lights that are making waves in maximalist circles. Boasting everything from 70s fringe through to art deco prints, these funky designs pack a serious punch, with island culture inspiring the creation of the new ARCIPELAGO LAMPS and CONTARDI’S extended CALYPSO collection.
All photos courtesy Chaplins Furniture.
All photos courtesy Furniture Choice Ltd.
The color green symbolizes life, renewal, harmony and growth and is set to steal the limelight for the year ahead. With people getting busier and the increase of screen time for work, this calming color is a gentle nudge to unwind and rejuvenate.
Reminiscent of nature and the outdoors, using green in the home also serves as a reminder to be more eco-friendly and sustainable where possible.
Rebecca Snowden, Interior Style Advisor at Furniture Choice Ltd., shares 4 ways to bring this color into the home.
Use green as a feature wall color
Serene and soothing, green makes for a great feature wall color. From darker shades like emerald green to brighter hues like apple green, the color offers many psychological benefits. These include helping to induce relaxation and serenity, as well as giving off feelings of optimism and growth.
Because of its benefits, this color and its many shades can be applied to many different rooms.
For example, home offices can benefit from a green feature wall as it helps soothe tired eyes. Similarly, sage green is a relaxing color that’s perfect for a bedroom feature wall, as it creates a calm and airy atmosphere that’s lighthearted and uplifting.
Some other accessories and textures to consider are jute, leafy plants and candles for relaxation. And where there are windows, choose sheer white curtains to allow sunlight in while maintaining some level of privacy. “The natural light will also cast a lovely glow on the sage green wall and give the color a little pop,” Snowden says.
Pastels are the perfect lighter alternative
On the pastel front, neo mint is set to be very fashionable in 2020. “It’s young, fresh, energetic – great for pairing with an equally sunny color like coral,” says Snowden. “Brighten up a small space or designate separate functional areas by way of color blocked walls.”
Balance the boldness of neo mint walls with simple, neutral furniture like a white bed. Select furniture with slim legs and clean silhouettes to achieve a clean look. Alternatively, layer on rugs and cushions within the same palette for a maximalist approach.
Statements pieces are key
Make a statement for the new year and invest in larger green pieces, such as an elegant green velvet sofa. The sumptuous material enhances the richness of an emerald green and adds depth to a space. To those anxious to make such a bold choice, Snowden notes that “a green velvet sofa is easier to pull off than you might think. It is incredibly chic and luxurious yet laid back enough to suit most interiors.”
Style with brass finished planters or side tables for a lavish look, or matching dark wood furniture for something classic and cosy. “Bold yet versatile, a green velvet sofa is easy to dress for the seasons and set to become a talking point of the home,” she says.
Houseplants are a designer’s best friend
Live green plants are the best accessories for decorating the home in shades of green. Some help clean the air and release more oxygen for easier breathing while others bear fruit for eating. Mix and match plants of different green shades for depth and interest in the home.
“Leafy, trailing plants inject a little wildness for an urban jungle feel while demure little succulents are adorable and easy to manage,” Snowden notes. “Plants are quick additions to the home that make a big impact on our wellbeing – a big focus for 2020.”
From holiday gift giving to to keeping your home’s style fresh in the dead of winter, finding the perfect inspiration can sometimes seem impossible. What if the perfect source was just across the pond?
These collections showcase a passion for design and creativity, all inspired by a European country or the style of that nation. May these sources of inspiration spark your own!
Procook’s Oslo Collection
ProCook’s Oslo range brings Nordic cool to the table this winter, continuing the dining trend for reactive glaze stoneware. Oslo tableware embraces the Scandinavian hygge trend with its organic shapes and cool grey tones with a subtle salt and pepper look. Easily dressed up for more formal dining, the Oslo range is also perfect for everyday use. Oslo includes dinner and side plates which have flat bases and a sharp vertical lip, complemented by gently curved cereal and pasta bowls.
Photo courtesy Procook.
Photo courtesy Reformations.
Living in rural Mid Wales, designer Craig Anthony is surrounded by the shifting patterns and colors of the country’s multiple landscapes, from open moorlands and mountains, to the woods surrounding lakes and rivers. All of this landscape inspires his creativity, which in turn helped him to launch his decorative arts company Reformations, an online gallery of handmade glass clocks and modern glass wall art.
His pieces that boast functional elements combined with highly decorative and abstract attributes. Additionally, many of his works also feature ambient lighting that creates a dramatic display when seen in darkness.
“My work develops organically, a reciprocal relationship between the materials and my imagination,” Anthony says. “Every piece I create feeds the design of the next. Created using paints with a high pigment content on specially prepared glass, and embracing a sense of natural chaos, my work is guaranteed to make a bold statement in any, contemporary setting.”
Started in October 2019, Shekåbba consists of a small, visionary team of people who originate from all over the United Kingdom, all who share a love and passion to introduce others to the people-centred happiness of the Danish home. “We believe that thoughtfully crafting a home environment of warmth and beauty, sets the stage for a lifetime shared with those we love most,” according to company founders Dan and Rosanna Chapman.
Inspiration behind the company’s founding starts within the Danish culture, specifically the Danish homes model which focuses on time with family and friends. To introduce others to such a rich, happy culture, Shekåbba helps customers discover more of Denmark’s gifted home decor designers and artists, to bring an authentic and broadening Danish home experience.
Photo courtesy Shekåbba The Danish Home.
High ceilings have become a statement piece in homes and apartments across the nation, and buyers have responded. The National Association of Home Builders conducted a survey in which 67 percent of respondents in 2018 said they would be willing to pay more money for ceilings higher than 8 feet on the first floor of their home — and with the percentage steadily increasing over the past few years, it’s clear that high ceilings are a great addition to any home.
With so many different benefits, high ceilings can become the selling-point of the home. Here are some benefits involved with designing a home around high ceilings:
Photo courtesy of 90 Morton
Photo courtesy of THREE MARKS
1. More Space
By adding more vertical space, high ceilings offer a spacious atmosphere for the individual to live in. The additional space adds a grander feel to the room, elevating the standard of luxury homes.
At 277 Fifth Avenue in New York City, the 13.5-foot ceilings provide a sense of grandeur and elegance, bringing an elevated sense of luxury to the residence. The light and airy curtains hanging from the top provide a sleek and stylish addition to the grand floor-to-ceiling windows.
1. Dazzling Views
In apartments and residential homes across the country, high ceilings can allow for even more windows, and therefore add spectacular views. With the potential of higher ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows can provide spectacular views of the landscape before them.
At Summit New York, a private residential building located in the heart of Midtown Manhattan, the 15-foot ceilings allow for gorgeous views of the Chrysler building with the rest of the city in the background. The sheer height of the ceilings allows for a larger view, adding a dazzling feature to the home.
Photo courtesy of Summit New York
Photo courtesy of DooArchitecture
1. Creative Design
Although high ceilings include great benefits just by themselves, they also have added benefits for interior designers everywhere. Higher ceilings allow interior and architectural designers to get creative with the space they have available to them. Rather than creating a simple, high ceiling, designers have used their creativity to create spectacular pieces that can be the centerpiece of the space.
By using different materials and an eye-catching design, the designers have created a statement piece in the Ritz-Carlton Residences in Miami, Florida. They not only add a spacious and airy feel to the room, but its design allows for an artistic interpretation of the classic high ceiling.
Photo courtesy of DooArchitecture
Adding natural light and creating an uncluttered, airy atmosphere, high ceilings with tall windows can increase the wellness of the individual. And with wellness becoming a hot topic in the industry, high ceilings and tall windows can become the selling-point of the home. By 2017, the wellness industry was worth $4.2 trillion, according to the Global Wellness Institute — a jump of 12.8 percent from 2015. And as the industry’s worth only increases, higher, grander ceilings have the potential to be a decisive element to the home.
Photo courtesy of Turnberry Ocean Club
Photo courtesy of Turnberry Ocean Club
Photo by Giacomo Maestri.
New design brand LATOxLATO, founded by the young architects Francesco Breganze de Capnist and Virginia Valentini, presents its first collection of furnishings and objects that strives to tell a story of true passion for Italian design. Exclusively made in Italy, LATOxLATO uses the finest materials and refined techniques, all built on a search for the best artisans and craftspeople.
“LATOxLATO comes from the wish of bringing the artisans’ knowledge passed down across generations to the public,” say designers Breganza de Capnist and Valentini, “and make people realize that in Italy we still have a great tradition of true masters of the art that mold one piece at a time with their hands … Our mission is to show the consumer everyday objects in a different way from the one they are used to seeing them, freed from the constraints of the usual trends through the constant dialogue between art, aesthetics and functionality.”
The duo is usually inspired by day to day life, taking their personal memories as well as the architecture of Italy and transposing generalized design concepts into household pieces. For those looking to outfit their home, both designers say that these pieces help to “tell a story about [the] owner.”
“Each product has a unique and recognizable identity and is meant to embellish its new home and also bring value to its new owner. The goal is to give the consumer the chance to own a very unique piece that tells a story about him, what he likes and what are his dreams.”
There are several pieces in the collection, varying in look and purpose. The Fourmosa storage chest draws on the clean formal lines of classic Italian design from the 1950s, updated for the modern age.
The piece is in varnished oak, with masterfully carved sharp edges bringing a sense of continuity to the surface. Designed to fit together in infinite combinations, these pieces create a dynamic, personalized piece that can even be expanded over time.
The trapezoidal modules easily lend themselves to various free combinations, without the use of joints.
Photo by Matteo Imbriani.
1950s design also provided inspiration for Aracne, an unconventional coffee table with an unexpected eight-legged silhouette. Its round glass top seems to float atop the elegant zoomorphic structure, solid and airy at the same time.
Its eight wooden supports, with rounded edges that allow the top to nestle into place with a natural elegance, create an evocative visual rhythm, interacting with its surroundings by projecting delicate threads of shadow into the light.
Precise woodworking and organic design make Aracne an elegant presence full of personality.
Photo by Giacomo Maestri.
Candleholders, vases and a centerpiece are a tribute to the Italian art and architecture that inspires their form and character.
The Vestalia candleholder boasts the natural elegance of the most precious marbles, from Carrara White to Carnico Gray and Imperial Green.
A complex process of water-jet carving, entrusted to historic Venetian ateliers, brings out the stone’s edges and veining.
Their design, rich in tactile emotions and interactive possibilities, makes them objects of compelling sculptural presence.
Photo by Matteo Imbriani.
The arched ceramic vases Marcello, Massimo and Vittorio offer a subtle allusion to Italy’s Palladian villas and palaces and to the perspectives of Metaphysical art.
The detailing in precious 24k gold or platinum creates reflections of light and motion in perspective.
The pure white of the surface showcases the precious glaze finish and the imperceptible differences in intensity that come from handmade artistry.
Left photo: Marcello; Right photo: Massimo
Both photos by Giacomo Maestri.
The beauties of artisanal ceramic return in the Sophia table centerpiece, inspired by the great piazzas of the città d’arte, Italy’s “Cities of Art.”
A meticulous study in proportion, Sophia presents itself as a scale model of the arches and porticoes of Renaissance architecture.
The result is an abstract geometric form, rich in sensory character and vibrant with luminous details that enrich the pure white of the ceramic.
Photo by Matteo Imbriani.
New York designer Aimée Wilder explores Eudaimonia, a Greek word commonly translated as happiness or “human flourishing,” in her collection of wallpapers, fabrics, rug and accessories. From the effects of the moon on the evolution of the natural world to the impact of astrological phenomenon, Wilder captures the many ways surroundings can influence our psychological state, and contribute to overall wellness.
“This collection was born through finding balance and stability in my own life,” says Wilder. “Once I learned that living to work instead of working to live, along with incorporating methods like Vedic meditation and natural healing into my daily routine, was able to create a peaceful environment around me, I hoped to thoughtfully reflect that feeling in each design.”
Eudaimonia consists of two wallpaper and fabric patterns, Pyramide du Soleil and Earthlight, with an additional rug pattern, Eclipse. All three patterns reflect the natural balance between the Earth, the Sun, and the Moon, evoking the beauty of cosmic balance. With this collection, Wilder introduces a new construction for commercial fabrics, tested for 50,000 double rubs and available with a range of protective coatings including anti-microbial and stain coating. In addition, for the first time, Wilder will offer wallpaper printed in Brooklyn, New York, where she resides and operates her design studio.
Pyramide du Soleil is a subtly optical pattern manifesting the ancient Sun’s shadow and its balance with the earth, Pyramide du Soleil features pyramid and Sun as they represent the illusive quality of time. It integrates pyramids and circles with sophisticated diagonals and horizontal stripes, inspired by the continuous synchronicity that exists between the earth and the Moon.
Earthlight focuses on the waxing and waning cycles of the Moon’s phases in an eye-catching, geometric pattern across wallpaper and fabric design. Named for the scientific phenomenon in which sunlight reflected from Earth’s surface indirectly illuminates the otherwise dark side of the Moon, Earthlight is sure to brighten any space.
Eclipse showcases the inversion of colors in this rug design suggests the effects of an Eclipse, a harbinger of change in the daily life that acts as a guiding hand when questioning one’s path. With a boldness that invokes a new take on a vintage aesthetic, the Eclipse rug comes in a range of warm tones that will add a welcoming touch to a room.
Pyramide du Soleil
Photos courtesy Aimee Wilder.
Photo by ©Dylan Chandler 2018.
Photos courtesy Aimee Wilder.
In a recent Furniture Choice survey of adults in Great Britain, minimalism has emerged as a favorite summer interior design trend, beating out other decorating styles like maximalism, jungle and tropical.
Rebecca Snowden, Interior Style Advisor at Furniture Choice, shared three tips to achieve the minimalist trend at home.
Keep surfaces clean and clutter-free
Based on the philosophy that less is more, minimalism is an intentional mode of living centered around simplicity. When aiming for this look at home, Snowden recommends to focus on clean lines and clutter-free spaces.
“Start by decluttering ruthlessly – eliminate anything that’s unnecessary and store belongings out of sight,” she notes. “In the living area where multiple activities take place regularly, make it a habit to clear surfaces daily. Keep a sofa feeling cozy with a couple of cushions and tidy up the coffee table for a clean look that feels relaxing at the same time.”
Other ways to reduce a cluttered look is to keep wall décor to a minimum, opting for pieces that are simple and streamlined. “A few pieces of framed artwork can add personality to the room and make it feel lived-in while staying on-trend,” Snowden says.
Stick to a neutral color base
At the heart of minimalist styling is a neutral color palette — subtle hues of white, grey, taupe and similar earth tones are calming and make a space feel fresh and clean. According to Snowden, the easiest way to add style to a minimalist home is to choose essential furniture pieces that contrast beautifully while keeping within the neutral colour spectrum.
“A white table with a sleek chrome finish lends a striking, modern touch and blends seamlessly into the overall look,” she adds, “If tight on space, get a round table with a pedestal base. Otherwise, larger spaces can opt for an extending table that’s practical and space-saving. Elevate the look with chrome-legged dining chairs that play up clean lines with a high back.”
Another way to make a minimalist home come to life is to place indoor plants within the space. “Greenery is often what turns a house into a home, and when it comes to this trend, plants can add warmth like no other. Keep it simple with a couple of potted greens or hang some air varieties that function as air-purifiers, as a bonus,” Snowden says.
Furnish and decorate with simple, clean silhouettes
The best way to furnish your minimalistic space is to focus on decorative pieces that are purposeful, such as a knitted throw for dipping temperatures or a minimal lamp for reading. As for centerpieces, a cushy sofa with a clean silhouette oozes comfort and makes a space feel inviting.
“Minimalist living is perfect for those who revel in clutter-free environments and enjoy interior design with a purpose. Display one or two treasured items instead of multiple small objects, and always pick pieces intentionally,” says Snowden. “Rugs are a good one — luxurious yet unfussy, and they double up to section off areas for different functions, while photos bring a sense of homeliness.”
Ultimately, Snowden notes being a minimalist doesn’t mean stripping all personality away — “it simply means that what does get displayed is thoughtfully curated and means a lot.”
All photos courtesy Furniture Choice Ltd.