Monday, May 16, 2011

Shukorina LOVES Annysa LaMantia Designs

Not too long ago I bumped into interior designer Annysa LaMantia at a party at designer Christian Ruffin's house. I'm super excited to do this interview with her as I find her decorating style to be very clean, modern, with a touch of European chic...just like moi:) just kidding, but in a serious way. The first time we ever had a conversation about design it was actually about pillows...YES, pillows. Her whole face lit up while talking about pillows...although I thought she was weird, I liked it! This girl really knows her stuff!!!

VA: What did you study in school and what was it like? 
ALD: Interior Design, Studio Art and Entrepreneurship at Indiana University. The design program was very intense! Many sleepless nights...but, it was great conditioning for the "real world"!
VA: When and where was your big break? 
ALD: That would have to be working for one of the best architecture firms in NYC-- KBA. I got to work on some large projects as a junior designer- along side some of the most successful architects in the business.
VA: Who and what inspires you? 
ALD: I'm inspired by people who go after their passions in life- people who figure out what their purpose is and go for it relentlessly. Everyone deserves to love what they do. I get so energized by those kind of people. I also get creatively charged when I am surrounded by environments filled with self-expression- New York City and Florence, Italy are two of my favorite places on the planet.
VA: How long have u been doing this and what are your clients like? 
ALD: I started training in 2006. My work in NYC started in 2008 and i've been at it ever since : )
Name your favorite project so far. I've had a lot of fun with my Atlanta projects. Working with Bobby V. for his new penthouse was a lot of fun- he's a great guy- very creative. My latest project was great too- I had a wonderful experience renovating a large home off of Mt. Vernon. The family was a dream to work with- and the clients had a great vision which I was able to bring to life. It's a very satisfying job.
(That's singer Bobby V.)
VA: Career wise where do u see yourself 10 years from now? 
ALD: Working on lots of international projects, designing a furniture line, working collaboratively with lots of other design mediums, and still very much loving what I do!
VA: Who is your favorite interior designer and what makes him/her great? 
ALD: I find myself liking certain projects from various designers, as opposed to liking everything from one person. For example, Richard Shapiro's Malibu Beachfront project in the April 2011 Architectural Digest is what I consider an exceptional example of dynamic design. I try to look at all design avenues all the time for inspiration- architecture, fashion, fine art, etc.,
VA: How would you classify your style? 
ALD: Clean, with character! Personality is the perfect accessory for any design- so I like simplistic structural palettes and base pieces-- then I like to infuse the space with the character of the client. It is crucial to the success of a space for it to be reflective of the client that resides in it. This is a design principle that I will always stick to!
VA: If your weren't doing this, what do you think you would have been doing? 
ALD: Great question. I'd probably be singing in a back alley jazz bar somewhere... I love music! My life is driven by creativity, so I would absolutely be doing something in the arts. Luckily, I have found a wonderful career that allows me to be creative every single day : )
VA: I love your latest project...tell me a little bit about it, actually tell me everything!
ALD: It is a 12,000 sq. ft home off of Mt. Vernon in Buckhead. The clients wanted to give a completely new look to their property, a process which lasted in total about a year. I was brought on to the project half way through the renovation process, when demolition was still taking place. At this time we began to redefine their spaces- getting rid of dated interior architecture features, and simplifying the "canvas" (i.e. removing crown molding for the walls, etc.) so we could begin anew. I worked specifically with the clients to determine their personal vision for their ideal living environment and then fabricated a plan to bring it to life. We collaboratively developed a concept of "Euro Eclectic", which fused contemporary design and old world vintage in a harmonious environment- surrounded by fresh white walls and based with dark Jacobian- colored wood floors. I chose multi-tonal and transparent fabrics that would play with the property of light- giving the rooms more dimension. I selected dramatic wall coverings as a substrate for the clients' extensive art collection- adding additional visual interest to featured parts of the home. I incorporated an indoor-outdoor feel in the home as well- utilizing large windows with clear glass to create a continuous view. We brought greenery indoors and had custom drapes created for the outdoor kitchen area to give cohesion to the adjacent spaces. 
VA: It looks amazing! When did you complete it?
ALD: It finished in April of this year (2011), this home was completed in the true vision of the client and it is a project that I am extremely proud to have been a part of.

Doesn't this girl make you want to go out there and design a sofa or a house or something?! I love people who are obsessed with what they do. I guess that's something that comes when you are following your true passion. It's beautiful!

Ps. For more of Annysa please visit her website 

Annysa LaMantia