Like a modern day castle, English designer, Faye Toogood’s, interpretation of a Mayfair apartment in London is wildly charismatic; a moody rumination where time stands still. A proud English soul pulses throughout, untamed, aloof and playfully eccentric representing all the wonderfulness of this harsh Isle.
Its contemporary architectural junctions and heavily patinated walls create alluring backdrops for 18th century antiques and avant garde pieces, receding or glowing the soft depth of vision captivates like a still life. Always one to celebrate the rich history of industrial design and high-end craft, Toogood’s choice of fixtures – Catchpole&Rye’s silver bath – and ornamentation – such as the collection of kitchen silverware, ring with majestic aristocracy.
It’s this meticulous weaving of the ages that radiates throughout. Toogood’s ‘Spade Chair’ in gold glows, behind is a curiosity cabinet with expressed welded joints and oversized fishnet fronts, housing antique busts and modern ceramics. Likewise her jewellery stand, atop an 18th century credenza, becomes more form than function against a Bridget Riley print. Her contemporaries are recognised throughout, Hilda Hellström, Michael Anastassiades and Martino Gamper to name a few.
It’s not just the immaculate curating of objects that makes this cosmos so alluring, but Toogood’s choice of palette and materiality induce heady feelings of windswept cliffs and tortured vegetation. Stormy blues and greys with highlights of autumnal hues, chunky tapestry, hessian upholstery, this noble hideout is a full immersion experience in all that is good about the UK.
Casa Ljungdahl – the home of the Ljungdahl Family – sits in heart of the Stockholm designed by Note Design Studio. It is, quite simply, something of a dream. Working with the top floor of a 1930’s building and to a brief that called for a “warm, homey atmosphere with the potential of the space being used for business meetings and formal gatherings”, the studio have turned a challenging task into a truly fine piece of design. The space is unique, workable, comfortable with the clients vision realised.
Taking the 200-square metre space, with slanted roofs and pockets of dead space, Note first sought to pare things back. “Our first step was to simplify everything we felt was too much, in terms of dimensions and materials,” they say.
Opting to use as little materials and colours as possible throughout, the colour palette is almost exclusively comprised of a smoky blue-grey and a dusty apricot pink. The two tones, flowing room-to-room and binding one space to another, create a sense of wholeness and softness, providing the versatility the space needs. Between the haziness of the peaches and the ever-so-slightly cooler blue, the house has an atmosphere perfect for both family and work life.
As for the structure, Note have gone similarly refined. Despite the potentially awkward angles and closed spaces, they’ve created a roomy feeling house – using dead space as an opportunity to create ample storage. While the general aesthetic is definitely Scandinavian in tone, and there is a gentle nod to the classic salon design of the past, it is also something much more neutral: international and timeless. Keeping to few materials and simple, thoughtful layouts, Note have created a home that would appeal across waters. Perhaps this was because they aspired to “reach a certain mood rather than a concept,” the house effectively connecting to the human and its subtleties rather than presenting an aesthetic to be appreciated in itself.
In essence, Casa Ljungdahl is warm and welcoming, homey and sophisticated, exceptionally dreamy. Of course, when the inspiration comes from three images: one of a brown cashmere coat, one of a pair of sand-coloured sneakers and a snapshot of a plaza in Rome, then maybe that’s to be expected.