You are a successful interior designer please tell me about your background?

I started my career in the fashion business with Pierre Cardin, first in Brussels and then in Paris. Looking back I think I wanted to be an interior designer already at that time. Once I decided it went on quickly, I opened the Pierre Yovanovitch Architecture d'Intérieur in 2001 and since then it has moved on.

How is a normal day at work?

Normal days don't exist and this is what makes the job so interesting and inspiring! My schedule is hectic. I travel a lot and go from office meetings, site meetings, site installation, galleries and auction visits, suppliers and workshop visits, art fairs and exhibitions. Renewal and energy are both necessary to make the best out of initial thoughts.

What criteria are necessary to achieve a successful interior?

To start with you need a very good lay out, coherent plans and fluidity in the circulations. The other keys to a good interior are balanced proportions, comfort, "warm minimalism" (and this I think is part of my interior design signature), beautiful and authentic materials, well chosen design and art pieces. And above all, my opinion is that an interior is successful when it fits the clients personality and life style. This is why it is so important for me to work with clients I respect, get along well with and appreciate.

What are you working with at the moment?

I am working on various exciting, large scale and ambitious projects in Europe but also in the USA. I feel very lucky to be able to do so. It is a large contemporary house in the Hamptons, an incredible penthouse apartment on 5th avenue in New York, a fine dining restaurant for chef Yannick Alléno and the art galerist Kamel Mennour in Paris whom I appreciate very much. We have just delivered a private museum in Brussels (La Patinoire Royale) in what used to be a building hosting a skating ring! And I was honoured to be able to work on the scenography of opening art exhibition "La Résistance des Images" curated by our former French Ministre de la Culture Jean-Jacques Aillagon.

In your interiors , there is a lot of Scandinavian design , what is that appeals you?

Apparent simplicity, perfect initial drawings and design, the choice of raw and authentic materials (for Hjorth's pieces for instance, wood is often very plane pine), what I consider as good taste with no superficial ornaments, originality, singularity, timelessness. And for all these reasons I refer to Scandinavian design and it finds its place quite naturally in my contemporary interiors.

Do you have any personal favourites among the Scandinavian Designers?

Axel Einar Hjorth is my number one! You will see in the picture selection we made that I have found over the years beautiful pieces for my projects. Paavo Tynell for the poetry of his suspensions and lamps. Frits Henningsen has also signed some master pieces.

How did you first discover Axel Einar Hjorth?

On a private trip to Stockholm some years ago.

What did you feel?

The first time I discovered the work of Axel Einar Hjorth in Stockholm, I was moved and amazed by the apparent simplicity of the furniture and at the same time the extreme sophistication of perfect lines, quality of craft and « timeless » design. For these reasons, I want to think that Hjorth pieces find their legitimate place and echo within interiors as I do my best to work according to these same aesthetic guidelines.

Can you reveal anything about forthcoming projects?

We are working on a still confidential though breath taking project: the renovation of a historic mansion in France for a key actor of the luxury industry. You will know more in September...!

Is there anything in your working life that you are more proud of?

I am very proud of my team and grateful for the amazing projects we are working on. This requires a lot of energy but our ambition should be in line with our clients expectations.

If you weren't an interior designer, what should you have been working with?

A gardener for sure. I have a beautiful garden in the South of France which was imagined by Louis Benech. It is still a young garden but it has great potential. I like the idea that a garden will also reflect the work and passion that has been put in it.

Do you use Barnebys, and if so, how?

Yes, I use Barnebys both for myself and for my clients. Barnebys is a good way to keep track of the auction dates, the different auction themes and not at least the final prices. It is important to follow up the estimates and prices to be able to have for comparison to what you see in the galleries .

Where do you get your inspiration from?

Books, reading magazines and newspapers, travels, art galleries, craftsmen and artists, my own team and friends, everywhere!

What is your strongest skill?

You could say I never let go and I don't accept compromise as an easy solution. I like following an idea and carrying it all the way through. Which moment of the day is best for creative thinking? Late at night when my mind is free.

How do you prefer to spend a free Sunday?

I can not imagine doing nothing! A free Sunday would be dedicated to gardening, spending time with friends and maybe trying to find some peaceful and serene moments.

Sofia Silfverstolpe