The unsung hero of many an interior space, a stylist can add personality, enhance character or capture something hinted at in the architecture. A good stylist can make a space stand out without clamouring for your attention, finding the key pieces and elements and arranging them ‘just so’ to enable even the smallest corner of a home to shine.
You can imagine then our natural curiosity about the inclusions and arrangement of a stylist’s own home. What would they fill it with, and how would it be arranged? Perhaps most importantly – what advice can we draw on for our own (often admittedly in need of a style) interiors?
Luckily we have had our questions answered thanks to the lovely Danika Rehfisch, interior stylist and decorator. As one-half of Joan+Veda, Danika is no stranger to us here at est, having shared her home in Issue #13 of est magazine.
In partnership with Space Furniture, we quizzed Danika on balancing practicality and whimsy, favourite products and design objects, and the importance of adaptive features.
How does your work influence your decisions around your space and interior style?
Danika Rehfisch: As a stylist working in Interiors, I am constantly exposed to old and new wonderful items for Interiors. It can be hard to resist a lot of what I see, and the editing process for my own home never ends; things move in and out, up and down. When we are working with clients we love to start that process for them.
What are your favourite spaces in the home and why?
Danika Rehfisch: My favourite space in our home is the living room/library. It has period details in the ceiling, old sash windows and the wall to wall, floor to ceiling bookcase is a never-ending stage set for all of my vignettes, photos, and of course hundreds of beautiful books. I love to spend time in here just looking and listening to music, reading or watching movies.
Tell us about four of your favourite pieces in the home. What makes them special?
Danika Rehfisch: The Tufty-Time sofa; it is enormous, and the comfortable and contemporary design gives me great joy. It is the sofa in the main living room and the kids and husband love it, its kind of bouncy and really practical too. The interchangeable covers mean that it is an affordable option too, as if in the future I needed to refresh it, I can buy new covers and not a whole new sofa!
This crazy design of the purple Jenette chair by Edra makes me laugh, the rods that form the back of the chair are like Chinese Joss sticks (we lived in Thailand for some time and this reminds me of the temple offerings). This chair moves around the house and is currently in my bedroom , however, when my youngest niece comes for lunch it is her requested chair at the dining table. Everything that Edra produces is amazing, this is (hopefully) the start of the collection!
The Joe Colombo armchair by Joe Colombo for Kartell is a sculpture. It is an extraordinary expression of manufacturing skill and is a series of interconnected, thick acrylic sheets that defy logic to form a beautiful, low armchair. It lives in the living room /library and is admired as much for its celebrated form as for its function.
The Drumbox table lamp by Diesel for Foscarini currently lives as a floor lamp in the main living room. It is a superb circle of light that gives a warm glow to the corner of the room. While it looks like a photographic lamp head, its simple form and the warmth from the light is superb.
One more item – the Kartell Invisible coffee table that lives in my home office. I had to add it as an extra as it is the perfect presentation surface for client briefings and sample displays – just gorgeous.
Why did you choose these particular pieces?
Danika Rehfisch: Sometimes things come into your home with a lot of thought and with practicality as well as aesthetics in mind (Tufty-Time Sofa) and sometimes the whimsy of a piece is enough to compel you to purchase (Jenette chair). I love items that are standalone hits but can also move around the home.
Who or what inspires your interior style?
Danika Rehfisch: I am inspired by my family – they give the best feedback about the comfort and practicality of my choices, and our clients, whose lives and homes are the first step in the process. My business partner Sarah Stiles is also a constant presence to bounce ideas off.
I love Instagram for the breadth of sources and the seemingly never-ending flow of glorious images, old and new books such as ‘Living With Design’ by David Hicks, ‘Haute Bohemians’ by Miguel Flores-Vianna, ‘Complete Works’ by Vincent Van Duysen. And of course design magazines and blogs like Elle Decor Italia, AD Espana, Vogue Living, The Design Files and Belle.
What makes a house a home to you?
Danika Rehfisch: I hope that it is not a cliche to say that a house becomes a home because of the people in it. The various characters in our home have decided what goes where, who sits on what, what colour it is and how much we laugh about it all.