Showhome chat to Anna Dodonova to find out the latest trends for autumn/winter 2012 and top tips for new homeowners…
Anna Casa Interiors is the ultimate design destination for the most luxurious interiors brands from around the world. The culmination of the intuitive creative vision of owner and director Anna Dodonova, Anna Casa Interiors caters to London and Europe’s most discerning clientele, offering a wide range of stunning furniture, lighting and accessories alongside Anna’s personal interior design service to help you truly transform every room of your home.
Anna Dodonova is an innovative, talented international interior designer who can quite simply transform your dreams into your dream home. Through her truly personalised interior design service, Anna delivers beautiful, glamorous and inviting interiors. Spaces to delight all of your senses, combining luxury and comfort with the ultimate in bespoke interiors sourced from some of the world’s leading craftsmen.
Anna personally chooses the brand she works with on her interior design projects as well as the items she stocks at her showroom in Mayfair, London. This involvement ensures Anna always works with the very best artisans and craftsmen from around the world.
Following the success of Anna Casa’s first showroom opening at the Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour in 2007, Anna Casa Interiors is now located in the very heart of London’s luxury design scene on Hay Hill in Mayfair.
Anna works alongside you every step of the way to turn your home into a castle with the highest of standards and the most beautiful and inspiring of designs. As Anna says: "Your home is your castle, a sanctuary from the world and a place to dream…"
With that in mind we chat to Anna to find out more…
How did you get into interior design?
Interior design was always a big passion for me, I always admired beautiful homes and decorations. Even as a child I was always moving my furniture around in my room and trying to make some wall decorations. Unfortunately in Germany interior design was not so popular. So I decided to go to London and study interior design!
What or who are your inspirations?
To always be inspired, for me it’s very important to keep your eyes open to everything. I love to travel to different countries and cultures, I love visiting exhibitions and read books and magazines to see what other designers are working on and get inspired too.
How does the design process begin?
It is always different, I don’t have a standard process. The client you work with or the project itself will always guide you or inspire where to start as every project is so different. But of course there a few basic steps you always follow; such as visiting and getting a feel for the house or apartment, having the brief with the client to be inspired and looking at the latest trends from my own notes or photographs on the market to make sure you give the client the latest materials, furniture and design.
Tell me a bit about the brands you stock?
At the moment my main brands are Baxter and Manooi, I have an exclusive agreement with them, so I am the only one distributor in London who has this brands and collections. Baxter is a high-end Italian furniture company, who specialise in leather. Their most popular items are their leather sofas. All the leathers are hand selected and specially treated. It’s a beautiful collection which is a must-have in every house. Manooi is a Hungarian chandelier company who specialise in crystal lighting. The designer and owner of the company is very talented and creative, I fell in love with the chandeliers from the first look. Even though there are many on the market with crystals, this company is special, you just have to see it! I’m working with Alex Turco, as we’re launching his work in the showroom this month, he makes amazing canvas paintings.
With autumn just around the corner, what tips can you recommend to update a home?
I would refresh things and make changes on a small scale, as changing accessories at home using warm bright colours, for example changing the deco cushions, covers, blankets, picture frames, curtains and maybe a feature wall with a nice bright wallpaper to get ready for the winter!
If there is one trend we should invest in autumn, what should it be?
I would definitely say it’s a leather chair by Baxter, it is a must-have for every home! You can choose a great colour and they are incredibly comfortable, even if you move home, there will always be space for it.
What advice would you give to new home/first time buyers on how to start choosing interiors?
I think doing your homework is always good! Research; see what’s in the shops, what’s in magazines and make notes on what is your favourite style, what do you feel comfortable with? Make a board with your favourite pictures and start making a choice, or get a good interior designer that you feel very comfortable with and trust.
Does your work have a signature style and feel?
To make a home unique and beautiful, for me it’s important to get a feel for the client, as every person is so unique, then I would be able to bring out the original.
A home is such an important place for a person, when you come home you have to feel hugged by it, comfortable and free, so it has to reflect you inside, so I try to bring it out! For example I don’t use the same style of design in one place, I like to mix it up. Sometimes I design contemporary interiors with a mix of antique, or classic with a touch of modern.
What is the most frustrating aspect of your job? And the most rewarding one?
As an interior designer, you are always depending on your suppliers, sometimes you have to rely on them and this can be very frustrating at times. The most rewarding thing is when the project is finished and you see your work and the happy face of the client.
Tell me about your personal style?
My style and design aesthetic are dramatic, with a touch of glamour, a mix of modern elegance and timeless classic.
What is the style in your home?
I think my home is very cosy, but of course it has a touch of glamour and drama.
For me when I come home, I need to relax, and always feel inspired. Especially with the weather in London, I just make sure that at home it always has sunshine. I like to collect modern art and some classic paintings. The furniture I have is a mix of modern and classic. As I’ve travelled for many years already and visited lots of design exhibitions, I am lucky that I can choose the best furniture design pieces.
Has the economy had an impact on your business?
Yes and no! People do think twice before spending the money, but they know that if they go for a good quality and timeless design that it is not just a look for a season as it’s an investment.
What has been your most challenging project thus far?
I can’t say that I’ve had one most challenging project. I think every project is challenging. I love challenges, and for me every project is special and a challenge. When you get a brief from the client, after that the challenge begins! I never give myself a relaxing moment even though I see exactly the design and style of the house I am working on, it will always be a challenge until the last moment of the whole project.
What are your favourite shops in the London and South East?
I love shopping, I don’t always have the time to visit shops I love like Harrods, Liberty’s and Fortnum & Mason so I end up doing a lot of shopping on Net-A-Porter for clothes and accessories.
For further information please visit:
Anna Casa Interiors – showroom
2 Hay Hill
London W1J 6AS
Tel: 020 7629 0045 or visit www.annacasa.net