Interview with Alice Apponyi from Apponyi Home
We first met Alice Apponyi through our Instagram page, she was immediately captivated by our WW Colour Series Chairs and when seeing her amazing work and design culture, as well as meeting her in person - we knew why.
Apponyi Home is a boutique, London-based multidisciplinary design studio, creating contemporary, eclectic and liveable spaces. Similar in ethical and environmental values to Hayche, Apponyi Home advocates the importance of biophilic design, and collaborates with ethical and (where possible) environmentally conscious specialists, suppliers, designers and organisations.
We invited Alice to answer a few questions, so we get to know more about the studio she founded with her business partner Pan Saladas.
Hayche: What inspired you to be an interior designer?
AA: An amalgamation of experiences and interests over time. I have only ever worked in creative industries albeit in different roles. After graduating from Central Saint Martins, I worked in the arts, then fashion design and styling, dabbled in film production and finally furniture and interior design both in America and London. Whilst studying interior design in Milan, I was commissioned to work on a project in Lebanon. I established my own studio about 6 years ago. Working in various cities enabled me to gain invaluable experience interacting with a diverse range of personalities which gave me the confidence to trust my intuition and to explore curiosity in my work. When I was 15, I spent my first internship working at my uncle’s architectural practise in London. Both my parents are creative, my father was property developer and designed furniture and my mother worked in fashion.
If you are a visual person, many skills are transferable and perhaps I identify more as a designer rather than an interior designer. I have always been attracted towards beautiful materials and form. I am passionate about collecting art & design and interested in the function and history of a piece.
Research and experimenting are fundamental to learning and creating personal style. Art shows, markets, technology, a walk outside, we are surrounded daily by sources of inspiration. Travel photography is a side hobby of mine and I try to explore a new destination at least once a year to develop my creative eye within a different environment.
Hayche: If they were to make a toy action figure of you, what would your accessory be?
AA: Super charged solar-powered wings - to be extra time efficient on projects and reduce my carbon footprint.
Hayche: To what degree have you actually controlled the course your life within the interior design world has taken?
AA: I didn’t have a concrete plan, but I knew the direction I wanted to take within the industry and have stayed true to my individual style. I am open minded, however, and don’t see myself doing the same thing forever.
Hayche: What would be your dream interior project?
AA: To design my own home from scratch, probably in the English countryside or on a Greek island. It would be very green, using a mix of contemporary and traditional materials it would blend harmoniously into the natural environment.
Hayche: What’s something you know you do differently than most people?
AA: Pan and I are excited to have recently launched our accessories sourcing service, a pay by the hour service created to efficiently and effectively source unique finds for the home. We tap into our little black book to deliver a flexible and bespoke design solution. Think of it as personal shopping for the home!
As a studio we are constantly trying to take steps to be more environmentally and socially conscious. We like to support suppliers and organisations who have an ethical stance. For example, we might choose to collaborate with a company based on how they source their materials, or maybe they are using an interesting vegan leather. We have just started working with a Jordanian workshop who employ refugees and people with disabilities to make stunning, handmade Byzantine mosaic tables – each piece tells a story. We also believe in incorporating biophilic design into our work for a happy and restorative environment. For us, it is important to maximise natural light and use plenty of green plants and nature themes throughout a home.
We have an ‘arty’ approach to creating interiors and can’t stand the shiny developers look. My approach to interior design is the same as putting an outfit together, I aim to compliment, not to match – design really is a language. I like mixing and juxtaposition in a space, however, there will always be a common thread. I will start with a theme, be it a colour, a form or a beloved piece of art and build around that layering as I go to curate a unique space using colour, prints, art, vintage and contemporary finds - and then the story comes together naturally.
Hayche: If you could go back in time and speak to your adolescent self, what advice would you give them about the interior design world?
AA: There is always a solution.
Photos courtesy of Apponyi Home
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