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MAKING FRIENDS TOUR TABLE OF
IN EVERY ISSUE
MEET THE TEAM
UP IN FLAMES
OH, TRAY THERE!
RUE SHOPS Little country, big style. Navigate the ins-and-outs of Hong Kong.
BLOGGER SIDE-BY-SIDE Two of our favorite Canadians give us a glimpse of their inner workings.
THE VACAY GURU
WHO WEARS THE PANTS?
RUE TOASTS ISSUE FIVE WITH GILT CITY
EDITORS’ TRAVEL ESSENTIALS
MEET THE DESIGNER Advertorial
HANDS ON TABLE OF
WANDERLUST & SPICE Travel to Turkey without leaving the kitchen!
ESCAPE TO THE ISLANDS Host a staycation luau party for your hometown crew.
STUDIO TOUR An Amsterdam professional takes a creative leap.
LEI IT ON ME Carnations go from cheap blossom to cheap but awesome.
KITCHEN CHRONICLES A New York chef revels in family, friendship and finger foods.
LA VIE LUDO
EL CIELO DE MÉXICO
ARABIAN DAYS Wow. We kinda can’t get over the fact that we rented a camel.
LEFT BANK LOUCHE
Mornings in bed, afternoons by the pool. Life is rough.
SNOW & ICELAND Nordic splendor at the seaside home of a fashion designer in Reykjavik.
SINGAPOREAN LOVE STORY European meets East Asian in this design affaire de coeur.
750 SQUARE FEET IN STOCKHOLM
PHOENIX OF RIO The home of a Brazilian architect rises from the proverbial ashes.
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EDITOR’S LETTER of his Rio de Janeiro home on page 166. Joanna Swanson makes room for baby after settling down in Stockholm (page 124), and Bergthora Gudnadottir launches her fashion line in Iceland (page 78). Then there are the love stories: Agnes Verrier, a French designer hired by a Singapore client who later became her boyfriend (page 150), and Cheryl Finnegan, who packed her bags for six months in Mexico City not knowing that twelve years later she’d still be there—with a husband, a family, and an apartment that honestly takes our breath away (page 96). Our entertaining experts faced the challenge of styling two U.S. shoots with international flair — and I Here at Rue we’re known for our eclectic style. Sometimes that means mixing high and low price points; other times it means creating a juxtaposition of antiques and contemporary pieces. Often it pertains to the international influence seen in so many of the homes we’ve chosen to share with you. Today’s global society allows us to read blogs from countries around the world and connect with designers and tastemakers in far-flung locales through email, Facebook, and Twitter. And though we love to see our favorite American designers inject their spaces with eclectic allure, this issue goes straight to the source and casts the spotlight on the
think you’ll agree they absolutely excelled. The Château Marmont story is an ode to that French je ne sais quoi that Americans have admired and emulated for centuries. The Egyptian-inspired story, photographed by the inimitable Jose Villa, transformed a California beach into something straight out of Africa. And yes, we really did hire a camel for the day. Of course, you needn’t leave the country to catch the spirit of adventure; see our staycation survival guide on page 52 or watch the new show from Master Chef Ludo Lefebvre as featured on page 138. No matter where you are, we hope you’ll sit back, relax, and indulge your summer wanderlust with all of us at Rue. Sincerely,
international design scene. Our talented contributors have traveled far and wide to bring you our favorite homes from across the globe. Luciano Cavalcanti combines his two loves, architecture and historic preservation, in the transformation
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MARISSA LIPPERT FOOD COLUMNIST
PHOTO: STEVE PAPPIN
WILL TAYLOR STYLE COLUMNIST
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HONG with Natasha Lawler
PHOTOGRAPHY: SAM GELLMAN COPY: NATASHA LAWLER AND MACKENZIE HORAN
American ex-pat Natasha Lawler never thought she’d find herself writing a blog about housewifery in Hong Kong. But when her husband’s company transferred him to this tiny Asian country, she took the leap. Here she shares with Rue some favorite haunts in her new city!
37 Tung Street, just off of Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan. This family-run business is in the up-andcoming neighborhood of Sheung Wan, which has been likened to New Yorkâ€™s meatpacking district. Many pieces serve two functions: a lid to keep a bowl of noodles warm here in Asia is a bread and butter plate at a Western meal. Their Curious Toile pattern is sold at Liberty of London but can be purchased here at a fraction of the price!
Flower Market Road, just off of Prince Edward Road West, Mong Kok.
The flower market is unbelievably affordable hereâ€” you can buy a potted orchid for just $2! This is Natashaâ€™s favorite entertaining resource; a couple potted succulents make for a special housewarming gift. Just be sure to bargain!
29 Hollywood Road, G/G Central.
VEENA FASHIONS 5-6 Middle Road, Shop No. 14, Ground Floor, Kowloon.
Hollywood Road is packed with antique shops worth exploring, but if youâ€™re looking to make some serious investments, trust this little gem. Glenn and Lucille Vessa have operated the shop for 48 years and have a wonderful collection of Asian antiques and accessories.
Tailoring is a way of life in Hong Kong. Every businessman has his favorite but itâ€™s also a fun activity for visitors since the turn-around time is only 24-48 hours! Natasha loves Harry, who charges $35 per shirt. Be sure to take him up on the Indian tea and samosas he offers you!
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Describe your aesthetic in five words. Simple, classic, elegant, neutral, French. Wishlist item you want so bad it hurts? J.Crew icon trench. Style icon whose closet you’d most like to raid? Audrey Hepburn. Obscure color combination you’re crazy for? White, white, and more white, ha! Beauty necessity you couldn’t live without... Burt’s Bees has a Milk & Honey Lotion that lasts all day. Interior designer you wish would decorate your home? I’ve never had a specific designer in mind, but someone who can mix old with new, to look clean and classic, with a little bit of glamour. That’s probably asking a lot! Girl crush? Ivanka Trump. She always looks so put together. What’s not to like about someone who runs an empire with such grace? Boy crush? Adrien Brody. He is incredibly mysterious and unconventionally handsome. Designer you’d wear exclusively for the rest of your life? J.Crew. They have the best basics, gorgeous statement pieces, and a fabulous limited edition collection. Food you could eat every day and never get sick of? Classic Italian thin-crust margherita pizza.
Meet two classy Canucks! Sarah of Haute Design and Daniella of Dress, Design, Decor prove that Canadians are all that and a bag of ketchup chips.
Describe your aesthetic in five words. Timeless, feminine, modern, tailored, authentic. Wishlist item you want so bad it hurts. The Sally calfskin handbag from Chloé. Style icon whose closet you’d most like to raid. Miroslava Duma. Obscure color combination you’re crazy for? Hermès orange, pale lavender and black. Beauty necessity you couldn’t live without... Lancôme Hypnôse mascara. Interior designer you wish would decorate your home? First home? Me. Second home? Kelly Wearstler, for something different. Girl crush? Sophie Marceau, for her confidence, natural beauty, and elegance. Boy crush? Jamie Oliver. I love that he’s started a ‘Food Revolution’. It’s definitely needed, and quite impressive. Designer you’d wear exclusively for the rest of your life? Céline. Food you could eat every day and never get sick of? Is Nutella considered a food? If not, then sushi.
Daniella Illustrations: Katie Rodgers
MEET THE DESIGNERS Gap 1969 Denim THE PICO CREATIVE LOFT
A rebellious crew of designers, wash specialists and beautiful dreamers has turned the top floor of a former cigar factory into their own personal denim Valhalla. For more visit www.facebook.com/gap
ADVERTORIAL MASAKO KONISHI, WOMEN’S MERCHANT “It’s the secret of LA, because everyone thinks of Hollywood and celebrities, but on the underside of that there’s this amazing industry.”
NICOLE KING-BURROUGHS, WOMEN’S DESIGNER “Everyone here basically lives into the lifestyle as well, so we’re really designing for ourselves, designing for people that we know and love.”
PHOTOGRAPHY : SEAN DAGEN COPY : MACKENZIE HORAN
ROB CREWS, WASH SPECIALIST “Some of the greatest things that we’ve done are mistakes. It’s just trial and error, and then you try to formulate that and get it set.”
JASON FERRO, MEN’S DESIGNER “I take a lot of inspiration from the street, from music, from the art world. There’s so many elements of how you wear things and how you portray that attitude.”
CALE MARGOL, MEN’S MERCHANT “There’s denim everywhere, there’s images everywhere, there’s inspiration everywhere. We understand who we are and where everyone’s coming from. So that translates in the line.
GALLERY WALL Saturated colors, pulsating shapes, and an energetic summer vibe create an original grouping full of Pop art personality.
GUEST CURATOR DAVID BROMSTAD is the winner of the first season of HGTV Design Star and host of Color Splash. Watch him mentor the finalists of the current season of Design Star, Mondays at 9pm ET/PT! 1. MARNIE GILDER $550 2, 3, 7. DAVID BROMSTEAD 4. SEPTEMBER WREN $28
5. BLUE SKY CLOUDS $30 9. DAVID HOCKNEY $159
MARISKA MEIJERS Mariska Meijers quits her day job and pursues her passion in Amsterdam. “It’s been a real roller coaster ride,” artist Mariska Meijers admits, referring to the decision she made in 2006 to abandon her career as an international investment banker in favor of a more creative path. She had begun painting to unwind from stressful days at the office and realized soon after that she had embarked on “the irreversible process of wanting to live a more creative life.” In the midst of a divorce and a move—and without any formal education in art or design—Mariska took the plunge. “A lot of people thought I had gone completely mad, leaving that sense of security behind me,” she recalls. “Sometimes it’s scary, but it’s a matter of just doing it and getting on with it.” Get on with it she has, opening her own studio and launching an e-commerce site where fans of her paintings can also purchase pillows and stationery featuring her trademark patterns. Her work has been inspired by the number of large cities she has called home: Stockholm, Singapore, London, and most recently her native Amsterdam. No matter what her current address, “a house should give
COPY: MACKENZIE HORAN PHOTOGRAPHY: HENNY VAN BELKOM
i donâ€™t believe in minimalism.
you a happy and warm feeling,” she insists. “I create my art and products with this thought in mind.” Her aesthetic is constantly evolving, with mainstays that include bold color, vibrant pattern, and what she calls “positive vibes.” “I have no rules when it comes to mixing colors and styles,” she explains. “I like my work to be artistic, bohemian, eclectic, warm, and welcoming. I don’t believe in minimalism!” Her studio space reflects that maximalist identity to a T. “It’s my oversized moodboard,” she muses. Formerly the European headquarters of Cirque du Soleil, the industrial building now houses creative types like designers, photographers, stylists, and even a theatrical production company. Mariska’s studio exudes a particularly artistic appeal, with high ceilings and large windows that bring in the natural light that her paintings require. The only thing it lacks, according to its owner, is “a window to the world.”
“I would love to have a shop window to allow more interaction with people on the street,” she says, adding that she intends to move her operations into a larger showroom by the end of next year. As for the evolution of her enterprise, Mariska shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. The next year will see new pillow and tray designs, the addition of lampshades to her ecommerce site, and a debut collection of silk scarves. “My art becomes my designs,” she says. “I felt the urge to turn my two-dimensional work into something functional and tangible.” But that’s not to say that she’s lost appreciation for her first love, painting; in fact, she remains as inspired as ever by her “great hero,” Henri Matisse. “I love to study his work close-up,” she says. “It makes me smile to see imperfections in the work of the master. It helps me appreciate the creative liberties in my own work.”
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THE RUE 2011
STAYCATION SURVIVAL GUIDE
PHOTOGRAPHY: TERI LYN FISHER
STYLING: SUGAR & FLUFF
RECIPES + FOOD STYLING: JENNIFER PARK
HAIR + MAKEUP: MONICA ALVAREZ
ESCAPE TO THE
*IN YOUR OWN BACKYARD CAN’T HOP A PLANE ACROSS THE PACIFIC? HOST A HAWAIIAN LUAU FOR YOUR HOUSEBOUND HOMIES.
GATHER THE TROOPS
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DOWNLOAD THE RECIPES!
LEI IT ON ME!
WHY welcome guests with flower necklaces when you can keep them busy making their own?
HOW: Inexpensive blossoms like carnations and marigolds provide an alternative to pricer tropical blooms, while touches of mylar, carved and painted soap, and origami shapes add panache.
WANDERLUST & SPICE
TURKISH PHOTOGRAPHY: JEN ALTMAN COPY & RECIPES: MARISSA LIPPERT
Set your sights on Turkey, a country with cuisine and culture so rich they makes your mouth water. It’s a fantastical intersection where East meets West, ancient mixes with modern, and vivid colors span from the diverse people to breathtaking palaces and ikat patterned plates. Turkey is a food lover’s paradise and a history buff’s mecca. The country’s cuisine is inherently healthful, flavorful, and beyond memorable.
multi-course breakfast comprised of a dozen homemade jams, homegrown organic peppers, sun-dried tomatoes and olives, to relaxed seaside dinners of freshly-caught fish, it’s love and good health on a plate. And let’s not forget the wondrous city of Istanbul, with its Spice Bazaar that showcases the magic of Turkey’s food culture. Baharat, za’atar, sumac, cumin, rose petals and biber offer complexity, intensity, and sensuality, and extraordinary health properties to boot. Spices bring heart to dishes and pack in disease-fighting antioxidants on the sly. Bags and appetite packed, get ready to travel by way of Turkey’s culinary riches.
CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE RECIPES!
KITCHEN CH TURNS OUT YOU CAN CHOOSE YOUR FAMILY. FOR CHEF AND FOOD WRITER JULIA TURSHEN, IT’S WHO DOWNLOAD YOU COOK WITH. THE RECIPES!
PHOTOGRAPHY: TREL BROCK COPY & RECIPES: JULIA TURSHEN STYLING: YOU + ME DESIGN HOUSE FLORAL DESIGN: KAT FLOWER
While I enjoy the conviviality of eating with friends, I’ve always been a very solitary cook—hesitant to delegate, reluctant to take direction, even claustrophobic at times. But my behavior changed radically when I met my best friend Cleo. We found each other through work and lived together for a year, sharing not just a love of food but of kitchens too. We pulled off some special meals in our small London flat. One night we fed ten friends a Brazilian meal for very little money, heaping plates with hearty black beans fortified with bits of pork and made fragrant with bay leaves. We threw an epic holiday party, passing around crispy fritters of leftover macaroni and cheese that we coated with breadcrumbs and fried in olive oil; that night Cleo’s rich eggnog tasted like a hangover mixed with heaven.
We really hit our stride years later in Los Angeles where Cleo’s mother Tricia lived. We shopped at the Santa Monica farmers’ market. We draped proscuitto on slices of juicy, floral melon. We fried chicken for Mother’s Day and serves it with shrimp So you can imagine my uncontainable joy when both and grits, greens, okra, fried green tomatoes and Cleo and Tricia moved to Manhattan this year. Our scrambled eggs, and bacon and biscuits too. Sunday dinners in Tricia’s TriBeCa loft have made There was sorghum molasses.
And cornmeal New York feel even more like home. We cook through pancakes and fresh strawberries and, oh, I nearly piles of recipes torn from magazines and run out for forgot the freshly squeezed blood orange juice extra wine at the downstairs liquor store. We invite mixed with champagne sipped out of Tricia’s friends and mix not just circles, but generations too. divine flutes (which, don’t tell, I used to cut the And while we’ve had our mishaps (from now on only biscuits). There were simple meals too, like sliced Cleo’s boyfriend James lights the charcoal), everything steak and arugula salad with torn basil. There always, in its own magical way, works out. When the was morning papaya with thick yogurt and flaked broiler broke, we switched gears and roasted the fish. almonds. In the kitchen Tricia, Cleo and I formed When we forgot the baking soda in the cornbread, we a cohesive team that shared tasks organically and ate it anyway and didn’t mind at all. Because that’s listened to the soundtrack from The Big Chill on the thing about cooking together at home with your repeat. favorite people: even when it’s not perfect, it actually is.
Image courtesy of Peter Block
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As the wind carries the sand, let it carry your imagination to a faraway land. PHOTOGRAPH Y: JOSE VI L L A Wa r d r o b e & D e c o R : C a n va s & C a n o p y Beaut y: T ea m Hair & Mak eup F l o r a l D e s i g n : L a Pa r t i e E v e n t s S TAT I O N E R Y : M O M E N TA L D E S I G N S V I D E O G R A P H Y : F L O ATAWAY S T U D I O S P r o d u c t i o n C o o r d i n at i o n : B E I N S P I R E D P R Wa r d r o b e p r o v i d e d b y B o n a D r a g
PAGE 64: CLOAK: Lindsey Thornburg PAGE 69: DRESS: Shakuhachi BELT: Lo Boheme PAGE 72: DRESS: Imitation RING: All for the Mountain BRACELET & NECKLACE: Vintage PAGE 73: DRESS: Lover PAGE 77: PEACOCK CHAIR: Pow Wow Vintage PAGE 73: SOFA: YEAH! Rentals PILLOW: West Elm
SNOW & ICELAND Joel and Bergthora Gudnadottir launch an Icelandic fashion label inspired by their countryâ€™s sheep farming tradition C O P Y: S H O K O WA N G E R P H O T O G R A P H Y: E M I LY A N D E R S O N
Ask fashion designer Bergthora Gudnadottir to describe her seaside neighborhood in the west end of Reykjavik, and what follows feels like poetry: “In the summer, you can dip your toes in the water, but it’s even more beautiful in the winter, when the sea is dark green and the waves are fizzing. You get ideas strolling by, listening to the sea.”
â€œI lov e fi n di n g t hi n g s fro m va ri o us de ca des a n d va ri o us pa rts o f t he wo r l d t hat fe e l p e rs o na l to me .â€?
As it turns out, Bergthora’s love for her surroundings runs deep: she and her husband, musician Joel Palsson, are the founders of the six-year-old fashion label Farmers Market, which was borne of the couple’s desire to reconnect with their Icelandic heritage. (Farmers Market pieces are made primarily of organic, raw materials, including Icelandic sheep’s wool.) “When we traveled, we found we could get the same things in New York, Reykjavik, or Hong Kong,” Bergthora says. “We realized that we had something special in Iceland. Most of us here don’t have to look back more than two or three generations to find a sheep-growing farmer in our genes. Farmers Market is a new brand based on old history and tradition.” The couple has applied a similar philosophy and aesthetic to their living space, which they share with their two young sons. “Our home represents our obsession with raw materials, things from the past, furniture with history,” says Bergthora. “I think this shows in the way we decorate. I love concrete, wood, leather, and skins—`a mix of all that.”
Purchased several months ago and still a work in progress, the 1960s structure caught the couple’s attention despite its need for extensive renovation. “We fell for the location,” Bergthora explains. “Joel grew up in this part of town. His grandfather was an engineer and was part of the team designing this neighborhood. Our boys go to the same school where their father and grandfather were students.” Another location perk: the Farmers Market studio is located just five minutes away, in Reykjavik’s fishpacking district. The house is filled with art that speaks to the couple’s family history. A series of painted sticks—a project by Joel’s mother, artist Anna Joelsdottir—is a particular favorite, and a photograph taken by a former employee holds special significance: “It’s an old swimming pool in the south of Iceland, just under the volcano Eyjafjallajokull, which erupted a year ago. My father grew up very close to this place—this was the swimming pool where he learned how to swim.” A balance of neutral colors and rustic materials reflects the couple’s passion for the pure and unprocessed. In the living room, a sofa the color of sand, made from linen, cotton, and silk, plays host to sheepskin pillows and a fur throw. Sturdy wooden furnishings, a glass tabletop, and potted greenery complete the picture. Nearby, in the dining area, a set of antlers is mounted to the wall; below it, seashells rest on top of a white credenza.
The overall effect is clean, calming. But not every detail in the house is muted. In another room, a gold cut-out metal chandelier by Dutch artist Tord Boontje dangles over the master bed, a spray of sunlight.
Featured on the Farmers Market website is a gallery of photographs: portraits of modern-day Icelanders in thick Farmers Market knits, shadowy vintage candids, sweeping landscape shots. The pictures span decades but the story they tell is timeless. In grainy black-andwhite, a man in a button-down shirt emerges from an igloo; in sharp color, a child straps on ice skates. In another, figures in the distance take a seaside strollâ€”among them, perhaps, a fashion designer, sifting
PHOTOGRAPHY: EMILY ANDERSON COPY: MACKENZIE HORAN
Cheryl Finnegan, who today goes by Finn, didn’t know what to expect when she boarded her plane to San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, twelve years ago. She had left her job, her marriage, and her San Francisco lifestyle; six months in Mexico simply seemed like a nice escape before she plotted her next move. Since then, an unexpected turn of events has rendered her hopelessly in love—with Mexico, with her “chilango” (slang for “Mexico City man”), and with the life they have created for themselves in their La Roma home. Finn’s husband is a Pop artist and “the perfect creative complement” to her more Gothic style. They have lived in their Mexico City home for two years and Finn maintains an office space in San Miguel. Their three combined children—Jaime, 27; Emilia, 24; and Tallulah, 7—as well as six dogs and three maids are constantly in and out of the house. It’s a far cry from the solitude Finn had come here seeking, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. Their home combines historical architecture with the couple’s unique collections, including a gathering of resin-encased bugs and a cluster of elves in the kitchen. “Being in the jewelry business, I am all about the accessories in the home: crystal chandeliers, jeweled boxes, ornate candelabras,” Finn says. “I love the chandelier in our dining room. It’s a bit wonky, but that’s what makes it work. It’s like something out of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.”
The unique decor is the icing on the cake in a home with modest origins but excellent bones. The central courtyard lends an air of grandeur to each of the rooms, and the high ceilings add another dimension to the couple’s eclectic belongings. The fact that the home had been vacant for many years prior to their purchasing it was both a benefit and a challenge as it had preserved the architectural integrity but required both electrical and plumbing updates. Today the home possesses a certain whimsical quality that Finn and her husband were keen to highlight as they chose paint colors and the like. “We wanted
to accent certain architectural elements and didn’t want the filigree work to get lost,” she says. That historic appeal juxtaposed with her husband’s Pop art is a style completely unique to them. “It couldn’t really be interpreted or recreated by anyone other than us!” Finn agrees. Finn’s weekends now consist of visiting art galleries with her second husband, roller skating with Tallulah, and entertaining Emilia and Jaime’s friends who swing by en route to dinner and drinks in the neighborhood. “I can’t say we are the typical couple,” Finn admits. Then again, given her extraordinary path, who would settle for typical?
LOUCHE YOU SAID, “I LOVE YOU.” I SAID,
I WAS GOING TO SAY,
- Jules et Jim, 1962
PHOTOGRAPHY: LOU MORA STYLING : STEPH ASHMORE VIDEOGRAPHY: SHARK PIG HAIR: CHRISTI CAGLE MAKEUP: JENNIFER FIAMENGO SHOT ON LOCATION AT CHATEAU MARMONT
“HE SENT HER
A KISS IN HIS MIND.”
PAGE 110 ON HER: swimsuit, tigerlily. PAGE 113 ON HER: sweater, turtlen vintage at palace costume. earrings, urban outfitters. bottoms, t by alexander wang. hat, palace costume. on him: tank, model’s own. boxers, target. decor: striped pillows, grace home furnishings. PAGE 114 ON HIM: tank, model’s own. pants, perry ellis. PAGE 116 ON HER: headband, ban.do. decor: soap dish, soap pump, toothbrush holder, grace home furnishings. PAGE 118 ON HER: sweater, ALC. skirt, clu. socks, gap. shoes, vintage ferragamo. watch, j. crew. ON HIM: button-down, steven alan. sweater and slacks, burberry. shoes, generic man. PAGE 121 ON HER: crop top, steven alan. bottoms, urban outfitters. decor: patio chair and ottoman, rose tarlow. PAGE 122 ON HER: socks, urban outfitters. shoes, giuseppe zanotti. tee, stylist’s own. trench, club monaco. ON HIM: sweater, topman.
SEVEN HUNDREN & FIFTY SQUARE FEET IN STO C KH OL M This Short-on-space swedish flat is much more than the sum of its parts. PHOTOGRAPHY: ALEXANDER PIHL INTERIOR DESIGN: JOANNA SWANSON COPY: MACKENZIE HORAN
“With an American father and a Swedish mother, I have moved back and forth across the Atlantic many times,” says art director Joanna Swanson. The past eight years have seen her living in Brooklyn, Luxembourg, and now Stockholm. “Who knows where we’ll end up in the future? Maybe we’ll be in Vancouver, maybe it’ll be Shanghai. Or maybe we’ll stay put in Sweden.” It’s this adventurous spirit that has dictated much of Joanna’s creative career as well. She has worked as an art director for a dozen design publications, as a creative director for Lexington Company’s bedding collection, as an interiors stylist, and as a travel writer for a handful of Swedish magazines. In the mean time, she’s playing house with her fiancé Jesper, their five-month-old son Axel, and their dog Brooklyn. Their tiny 750-square-foot apartment satisfied her requirements for an open floor plan and adequate outdoor space for Brooklyn—but presented its fair share of obstacles with regard to space.
“THE THING THAT’S WONDERFUL ABOUT LIVING IN A SMALL SPACE IS THAT WE REALLY GET TO LIVE TOGETHER.”
“WE CREATED OUR GOLDEN RULE A WHILE AGO: WHEN WE BUY SOMETHING NEW, SOMETHING ELSE HAS TO GO.”
“When I lived here alone with Brooklyn, I had tons of space. The closets were filled to the brim with books, clothes, magazines, and all the things that inspire me,” she muses. “Slowly but surely, I’ve had to edit my collections. To make life easier, we created our golden rule a while back: when we buy something new, something old has to go.” The result of that philosophy is a livedin home that mirrors its owners’ personalities. “The pieces in our home that have a story behind them are the ones that I hold most dear,” she insists. “Everything has been collected over time. I will never buy something just to fill a space. In fact, if I cannot find something that I love, I simply wait.”
THEIR CURRENT BELONGINGS COMBINE SCANDINAVIAN MINIMALISM AND EXOTIC WARES from Joanna’s globetrotter past. The industrial coffee table was purchased at a flea market in Bordeaux, but it’s the couple’s bed that draws the most compliments. “We had been looking at beds and found nothing that we liked,” Joanna recalls. “I was pregnant so the mattress on the floor was not cutting it. Jesper then came to me with an idea to build a bed out of pallet crates and paint them white. So simple but still so unique!” Joanna for one is always on the lookout for one-of-a-kind pieces that will breathe new life into their apartment. “Our home is a constant work
in progress. We are constantly changing things around,” she says. “The day we feel 100% satisfied is the day we will put the apartment on the market!” Until then, she and her family are making the most of their current digs. “Sure, we’d love taller ceilings and bigger
closets. But we’re really very happy living in this compact space,” Joanna explains. “The thing that’s wonderful about living in a small space is that we really get to live together. Space is good but being together is most important. I really treasure this time in our lives.”
PHOTOGRAPHY: MAX WANGER COPY: ABBY STONE BEAUTY: LEVI VIEIRA
French master chef Ludo Lefebvre takes on America with one new television show, two new babies, and countless culinary tricks up his sleeve.
July 14 celebrates the day that the French stormed the Bastille to claim their independence from the monarchy. This year it was also the day that the reservation list for Ludobites opened. The storming of Open Table made the historic takeover look easy; the full five week run of the seventh and latest incarnation of Chef Ludovic Lefebvre’s pop-up Los Angeles restaurant was booked in sixty seconds. It was yet another in a long list of accolades for the innovative chef who came to the States fifteen years ago without speaking a word of English. Known for his command of the intricate complexities of taste and texture, the charismatic Frenchman is now poised to bring his unique style of cooking to America with his new show, Ludo Bites America, premiering on the Sundance Channel.
The six part series recreates the Ludo experience that has enthralled Los Angeles—inventively addictive food served in a casual atmosphere—in cities across America. This is the restaurant industry on warp speed. The chaos of ﬁnding a venue, stafﬁng and coming up with a menu, tasks that often take months to perfect, gel in one week and is part of the fascination of the show. The other is observing the relationship between Ludo and his wife, Krissy. Theirs is a perfectly executed dance that makes it all possible; he runs the kitchen, she rules the front of the house. It is this partnership that is at the heart of Ludo’s success. Their meeting is the stuff of culinary legend: she spotted him while on a date with another man and fell in love with him at ﬁrst sight. Nine months later they were married. Today, time alone or with friends and family, away from their many projects—there is also a Ludobites food truck—is something that the couple cherishes. With three-month old twins, life at home has taken on new meaning. Here Ludo enjoys the solitude of cooking alone. Away from the frenzy of the restaurant kitchen, complexity gives way to the simple ﬂavors of the ingredients he uses to recreate the foods he remembers from his childhood when he learned to cook alongside his mother and grandmother. Tomato tarts, fresh eggs, seasonal fruit, homemade jam, bread and cheese and, of course, wine. Later, there may be a game of backgammon or Yahtzee but for now, it’s time to eat. It’s a beautiful day and life, like the food, is good.
SINGAPOREAN LOVE STORY
A PARISIAN EX-PAT FINDS MORE THAN JUST DESIGN INSPIRATION IN EAST ASIA. PHOTOGRAPHY: SCOTT A. WOODWARD INTERIOR DESIGN: AGNES VERRIER STYLING: MARIE MAGLAQUE COPY: MACKENZIE HORAN
gnes Verrier left Paris and moved to Singapore with her now ex-husband fourteen years ago. Tiring quickly of her role as an ex-patriate wife, she opened her own French bakery and bistro called Choupinette. She had never considered a career in interior design before a friend contacted her about transforming his newly acquired warehouse into a suitable office space. Though she had no formal training, Agnes accepted his offer with can-do vigor and set to work maximizing the layout and designing custom furniture in Vietnam. One project led to another and she hasn’t looked back since. “I always believe things happen for a reason,” she says brightly. “My life is a succession of lovely accidents.” Indeed her life took several unexpected turns once she had settled in Singapore. Following her divorce, she began work with a British client who wanted her to decorate the flat he had just bought. “Draycott 8 is actually a love story. I did the flat, fell in love with the owner, and ended up moving in after completion!” And the rest, as they say, is history.
“I’LL NEVER HAVE A TV IN MY BEDROOM OR LIVING ROOM. IT KILLS THE ROMANCE!”
She and her boyfriend Christopher have since transformed his bachelor pad into a suitable home for Agnes’ two sons as well. “One of my favorite memories in this home is the first time my two boys, Max and Enzo, slept in their new room,” she recalls. “They were thrilled and so was I. A fresh start in a fabulous new space!” Fabulous scarcely begins to describe the style of their eclectic home, which Agnes lovingly describes as “organized but a little mad.” Originally a blank canvas, the apartment lacked the charm that she had been accustomed to growing up in Provence. “I like quirky spaces! Adding character was a big priority,” she says. Given Christopher’s career in aviation, the couple loves to
travel (having visited no fewer than 90 countries in 2010) and injected worldly charm with antique finds from around the globe. “My favorite pieces are the two pillars between the dining and living rooms,” Agnes explains. “They’re originally from an Indian temple but I found them in an antique shop in Thailand on my fortieth birthday and my heart just stopped. I knew they were meant for me and I simply had to have them!” The pillars just barely fit into their Singapore flat, skimming the ceiling with just eight centimeters to spare. “But they changed the whole spirit of the house,” she insists. “Just looking at them makes me happy. What could be better?” Agnes paid great attention to that spirit as she decorated her new home. She redid all the ceilings to ensure that the lighting was perfect and that the sound system would be invisible. “I hate wires in a home!” she says emphatically. “I’ll never have a TV in my bedroom or living room. It kills the romance!” Romance lives front and center in this home, and everyone who visits can feel it. “When I want to go into hiding, I switch off my phone and curl up on the terrace with a good book,” Agnes says. “But that’s pretty rare. We have friends popping in almost every evening for a glass of wine—that’s what happens when you have a walk-in cellar!” But Agnes and her family aren’t complaining. As the Chinese calligraphy in one of the bedrooms reads, “Life is good, life is great, life is wonderful!”
hoenix in Rio The home of a Brazilian architect rises from the proverbial ashes.
Photography: Woodnote Photography Copy: Marva Tucker Styling: Jorge Soares
The vocations “architect” and “preservationist” rarely refer to the same person. An architect builds anew; a preservationist favors the past. But for Luciano Cavalcanti, these terms need not be mutually exclusive. He purchased his 18th century home, located in Rio de Janeiro’s bohemian Lapa neighborhood, with two seemingly disparate intentions: to make it livable for the 21st century homeowner and to do so without sacrificing any of its historical integrity.
For Luciano Cavalcanti, the terms “architect” and “preservationist” are not mutually exclusive.
This philosophy is very much in keeping with Lucianoâ€™s personal aesthetic, which prefers an eclectic mix of time-worn antiques and contemporary designs. When he purchased the property, it was a one-story home with a shameful past as a brothel. Luciano knew the project would be a challenge: how could he preserve its architectural integrity, erase all memories of its former use, and transform it into a suitable home for himself?
Somehow he managed all that and then some. In addition to housing Lucianoâ€™s apartment and his architectural office, the renovated structure also comprises a retail space on the first floor. It took Luciano more than five years to revitalize the first floor and to construct two additional stories above it, but who could complain when the end result looks like this?
â€œMy design sensibility was informed by emotion rather than any particular style.â€?
The retail space on the first floor is home to Luciano’s design boutique Atelie Belmonte and features his telltale mix of globally-sourced antiques and modern designs. The second floor houses his architecture office as well as a workshop. But it’s the homeowner’s third story apartment, with its exposed brick, perfectly aged plank flooring, and exposed wood beam ceilings, that best showcases Luciano’s talent.
Adding two stories and repurposing the building into three unique entities enabled Luciano to maximize its utility without compromising on style. The retail space, home office, and private residence are all three in constant evolution with their owner’s changing preferences. “My design sensibility was informed by emotion rather than any particular style,” he explains. Luciano designed and decorated with only what he truly loves—and that passion is evident with every step through his new-and-improved abode.
LOU MORA photography
JOSE VILLA photography
SCOTT A. WOODWARD photography
EMILY ANDERSON photography
ALEXANDER PIHL photography
MAX WANGER photography
EXTENDED FAMILY ABBY STONE copy
KATIE RODGERS illustration
SAM GELLMAN photography
ALEXANDER PIHL photography
KELLY STONELAKE photography
SHARK PIG videography
CANVAS & CANOPY wardrobe & décor styling
KRISTIN PHILBIN graphic design
SHOKO WANGER copy
CHRISTI CAGLE hair & makeup
LA PARTIE EVENTS floral design
STEPH ASHMORE styling
ERIN GIRARD graphic design
FLOATAWAY STUDIOS videography
STEVE PAPPIN photography
HENNY VAN BELKOM photography
LEVI VIEIRA hair and makeup
SUGAR & FLUFF styling
JEN ALTMAN photography & styling
LINDSAY GOLDNER intern
TEAM HAIR & MAKEUP hair & makeup
JENNIFER FIAMENGO hair & makeup
MARIE MAGLAQUE styling
TERI LYN FISHER photography
JENNY PARK food styling
MARVA TUCKER copy
TREL BROCK photography
JORGE SOARES styling
MONICA ALVAREZ hair & makeup
WILL TAYLOR styling column
KAT FLOWER floral design
NICOLE PAULSON photography
Rue Celebrates Issue 5 with GILT CITY San Francisco and McGuire Furniture Until August 8, Rue readers receive 20% on Gilt City orders up to $250!
PHOTOS: : NICOLE PAULSON
THE MAKING FRIENDS TOUR Rue heads to San Franciscoâ€™s Phoenix Hotel for a cozy acoustic bed-in session with Barcelona, Holcombe Waller and Jenny O.
PHOTOS: KELLY STONELAKE
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