Your home is your castle. It’s your sanctuary as well, and nowadays it’s also likely to be an extension of your personal style. Social media sites such as Instagram and Pinterest provide an insight into some of the world’s most stylish houses and apartments, prompting us to update our own living spaces.
Seasonal style influences for the home are often inspired by what is happening in the fashion industry. But while fashion trends are quickly translated from the catwalk to the stores, the pace of change for interiors items has always been slower, because of the longer production time required – there is typically a lag of five years from the runway to the furniture showroom.
Now, however, clothing labels are introducing pieces for the home, resulting in synergies across colour palettes, fabrics and materials, and interiors companies are looking to clothing designers to make their products more fashionable: take the high-profile collaboration between Raf Simons and textile company Kvadrat, for example, while on the high street, Ikea has set up a series of partnerships with European designers including Katie Eary and Walter van Beirendonck.
As well as leading the way in luxury fashion, Italy also hosts the world’s largest interior design fair, Salone del Mobile. With 1,300 exhibitors and more than 300,000 visitors, it is a testament to the country’s affinity with brilliant design. Marni now releases a limited-edition furniture collection at the event each year. For 2016, it showcased chairs, small tables, lamps and vases in metal and wood decorated with brightly coloured handwoven PVC cords, made by women in Colombia as part of a community support project. It’s no surprise that such pieces sell out very quickly.
A perfect example of an Italian fashion company that is fully embracing homeware is Gucci, which now owns the historic porcelain tableware company Richard Ginori. The enterprise was established in Florence in 1735 by Carlo Ginori, a nobleman who searched Tuscany for kaolin, the clay mineral that is crucial in the making of porcelain. Pieces by Richard Ginori became prized for their impeccable quality, and hand-painted Richard Ginori designs can be found in luxury hotels and even the Vatican.
Gucci’s creative director Alessandro Michele, who is celebrated for marrying the fashion house’s heritage with his romantic vision, is now also at the creative helm of Richard Ginori. Showing respect for the history of the company, he has selected archived pieces and reinterpreted them for today’s clients. Michele’s ability to tell stories through his designs and skill in mixing and matching prints and shapes can now be seen across Gucci’s textiles as well as Richard Ginori’s porcelain. In Michele’s adaptation of Richard Ginori’s Lion, Wolf and Bearded Man design, the heads of these three figures feature on differently sized porcelain vases and were reproduced on belt buckles and accessories for Gucci’s 2016 resort collection.
A return to opulence on the catwalk and in the home is being welcomed by Versace, which has introduced four new homeware lines. Leopard and zebra prints are to be expected, while other themes include ocean-inspired motifs across pastel-coloured pieces. Meanwhile Missoni, with its instantly recognisable zigzag-patterned clothing, uses the same vibrant prints on its cushions, rugs, bedlinen and tableware.
Dedar, which specialises in textiles for interiors, is renowned for its craftsmanship and exploration of fine fabrics. Established in 1976, it is based close to Como in the north of Italy, a region that has produced fabrics such as silk for centuries. The company’s aim is to create beautiful and sophisticated textiles that blur the line between art, fashion and design. Its latest collection is a culmination of extensive research into textiles resulting in Dedar taking fabrics that are most commonly used in the fashion industry, such as moleskin, burette silk and twill, and adapting them for interiors.
While we may not change our décor as often as we change our outfits, a new direction in the design world, and the increasing range of options available, mean it is easier than ever to make your home as fashionable as you are