Local Milan stylist and graphic designer shares what Design Weeks means to her.
What are you most looking forward to this year at Salone 2014? How do you see Milano during this time and what is the best part about this city in terms of hosting the Fair?
During Salone del Mobile, Milan is a completely different city: Its spring (which means warm!), and filled with people, making it fun-loving and very welcoming. Each district offers something, and each district deserves to be visited and discovered, even by us, "citizens of Milan".
How important is design to you? When you travel and go to different places, do you always see a space through the eyes of a graphic designer/designer/stylist?
We (with partner Giovanni Gennari) always look for the "soul" of things, we love the story behind every object, the memory of every object, and this we will is part of its design. That's important for us. When we travel, our experience definitely influences our approach, but we are more intrigued by antique objects (and situations) of the past, rather than the modern avant-garde design. We look to the past to how it shapes the present day.
What is your dream design object (furniture, kitchen, bathroom, lighting, etc)?
More than anything, our “dream house” would be a sort of "grandmother's house", full of memories and stories. Everything is inspired by the past and this is what draws our attention. Flea markets are our "design supermarket". The British couple James Plumb (made up of James Russel and Hannah Plumb) has interpreted this perfectly and we see this also as our passion, reinterpreting old vintage furniture, giving them new roles in a modern setting. For us its about all the objects coming together rather than singling out one in particular.
What events are you looking forward to during Salone this year? With the FuoriSalone taking over the entire city there is so much to see and do--how to you chose where to go and what to see?
I think we'll go day-by-day, we'll choose an area every day and we'll enjoy that area during the evening and the night. With such a busy and changing programme it so hard to decide on what to do and where to go! Too many choices! But for sure we will go by Spazio Rossana Orlandi, which every year holds big surprises.
You define your style as "retro chic". Do you think many designers rely on traditions of the past to inform their current styles?
I think that many designs of today are born from the past, even if in some small way but I cannot say for sure. The experience of each individual influences his work and this manifests in what we do, whether it is design or some part of the creative process. Many of the places we have travelled to and see and those places we encourage people to visit are filled with design objects that are now part of the past but were at some point in time, very much a part of the present. These “retro” objects are what make a memory and an impression and often allow us to appreciate how things have evolved.
You do everything from styling private and commercial spaces to also developing brands and photographing spaces. What are your favorite elements of styling a shoot?
The research is definitely the most interesting and challenging moment of any project we begin. Then we choose how to arrange the pieces to create a unique and memorable place. Its all about creating a harmony with the objects and the space.