Luxury living. Understated sophistication. Serenity in design. These are some of the characteristics that shine through the many designs completed by the team from The Private House Company. We recently spoke to interior designer and owner Yvonne O’Brien about the company’s passion for all things decor and design. Here’s what she had to say…
How would you describe your personal style?
Laid back luxury – casual yet understated elegance in airy light interiors.
What qualities define your brand?
We are a small business and team and I think this comes through in the very personal way we interact and relate with our clients. I also hope to think that my immense passion for my industry and job comes through in our projects – we would never deliver a space that I personally wouldn’t want to live in!
What sets your brand apart in the industry at the moment?
Nature and light. In a world where materialism and the “bigger and better” mentality is impacting our environment and climate change, I would like to think that our brand is set apart by a focus of bringing light and nature into the home, as well as using sustainable materials.
What one design element, trend or furniture item can you not live without.
Natural cane furniture. I love how it pares down a look and gives a room a more relaxed feel. And also sisal/jute /grass carpets. Mirrors – I love how it gives a room depth and reflects light.
What design influence has had the greatest influence on your work and business?
Instagram and Pinterest. I also have a treasured collection of books that I have curated over many years – they are often my go-to for projects and I know each one in and out!
What has been one of the most challenging projects you have worked on?
All of our projects have their own unique challenges, and we enjoy the problem solving that each one presents us. Working in the bush you are given tight deadlines and this usually entails coming in after the contractors who are generally behind schedule but the date the guests arrive cannot be postponed. One time we had 24 hours to get in and out!
How would you describe the design industry in South Africa at present?
I strongly feel that the South African design industry is right up there with the best of the best! You only have to travel to see that we are competing on a global scale.
What trends do you think we should keep an eye on in upcoming seasons?
The trend of tribal and ethnic patterns continues, as well as the use of earthy colours like dirty pink, terracotta, khaki green and mustard. This translates into the use of rugged, raw materials and fabrics with texture. I think we will also continue to see the revival of artisanal and traditional crafts such as weaving and ceramics as people search for their roots in this crazy world. We will also begin to see more and more plants coming indoors as homes and gardens get smaller and we try to bring the outdoors in.
What exciting projects do you have planned within the next year?
An upgrade of a lodge in Zimbabwe and boutique hotel on the island of Mykonos.
Watch this space!
Find out more at The Private House Company.