To say that Robin Standefer is a fascinating individual is an understatement. You don’t even have to fulfill her: Step into La Mercerie because the late afternoon gentle slants by means of the home windows onto the pale-blue velvet banquettes, or end up in entrance of a spotlighted silk-enclosed mattress and a shelf stuffed with gorgeous china contained in the British Galleries on the Metropolitan Museum of Artwork, or get misplaced within the ancient-looking mural over the gleaming darkish bar on the Greydon Lodge in Nantucket, or keep in mind the primary time you ever set foot within the Ace Lodge, and also you’ll really feel Standefer’s curious, specific thoughts at work.
Collectively together with her husband and design accomplice, Stephen Alesch, Standefer based the now-legendary Roman and Williams Buildings and Interiors, and the remaining is historical past: Their lists of initiatives and awards is as spectacular because it comes, and their ventures—most notably Guild, their retailer in New York full of gorgeous artisanal objects and furnishings—mirror a ardour for exploration past the definitions of what a designer historically does. The 2 are longtime collaborators with each goop and GP, and we couldn’t love their work, aesthetic, or worldview extra.
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Now, together with a lot of America, they’re at residence—of their case, a Montauk weekend home. “I really feel like I’m being homeschooled,” laughs Standefer. “We’ve been right here, working and dwelling, for about seventy days at this level, longer than we’ve ever spent right here at one time. I’m grateful for it on so many ranges, after which it may also be tough on so many ranges. I imply, Stephen and I like to prepare dinner—we’ve been doing it collectively for twenty-five years—however we’ve by no means made this many consecutive meals. Which is unbelievable and romantic and exquisite and artistic, but when a hamburger all of a sudden arrived at my doorstep, I’d be fairly completely happy!”
The 2 are busier than ever with work, however Standefer says that taking the time to make your house as lovely as it may be is value it regardless of how crazed your schedule. “When you will be delicate and delicate to what comforts and nurtures you, this generally is a transformative time,” Learn on for her fourteen imaginative, inspiring ideas for profiting from staying residence.
Clear to Spark Creativity
“This can be a time to mirror on what consolation and cleanliness actually imply to us and do for us. Stephen and I’ve this heat, maximal aesthetic; conserving issues so as offers us peace and house. I believe it’s about treating cleansing somewhat bit like a ritual: Proper now I’m operating two companies, cooking, cleansing, vacuuming, attempting to remain sane…so making a ritual of, say, washing that stunning throw that I really like—one thing I used to be all the time too busy to do earlier than—brings some extra magnificence into life. I’ve all the time made somewhat ritual of hanging sure issues to dry on a clothesline outdoors, and I’m doing it much more now. It blows a recent vitality into your complete house.”
Discover the Magnificence
“We’ve been utilizing the identical cover for 100 years—our enzyme-wash coverlet—however I’ve simply been rediscovering how a lot I adore it. It’s so cozy, washes so nicely, feels so good once I air it out. Being at residence on a regular basis will be this laboratory for locating what nurtures and comforts you. Nurturing and luxury—that’s a very significant mixture! Cooking a wonderful fish or setting a wonderful desk will be comparable. I’m actually into GP’s It’s All Straightforward proper now, and the Ottolenghi cookbook, too—simply making these lovely recipes is an expertise. Nobody’s touring, and also you won’t be shopping for a flowery new costume, however possibly you go all out with some candles one night time. Otherwise you go fancier on every part this Sunday, bringing out completely different dishes or selecting completely different flowers. It’s important to create your rhythm.”
Incorporate Dwelling Issues
“Each setting wants dwelling issues in it. I’m a giant flower purchaser, however I’m rising issues, too. I purchased seeds—herbs, some chrysanthemum seeds I’m particularly enthusiastic about—and I’ve been beginning them indoors. One thing rising on a windowsill or a hearth escape can simply change the best way you’re feeling. Final night time, I made a fennel salad, so I took all of the fennel fronds and put them in a vase on the desk. Backyard (if in case you have one), or backyard in your windowsill. It’s so lovely so see one thing develop. Develop some scrumptious greens, put them with an egg and somewhat udon in your donabe, and eat them. Luxurious is one thing nurturing and actual. The world will be horrifying and exhausting, so we’d like some pleasure and a few magnificence, and dwelling issues carry it instantly.”
Flip It Inside Out
“After we first received this place, the partitions have been coated in unhappy, unhappy drywall, and the very first thing we did was simply rip it out proper right down to the plywood, and it’s been that manner ever since. There’s one thing about turning one thing inside out. Till now, we’ve by no means been right here this lengthy in a single stretch, and it’s funky—it’s like camp, virtually—and I’m actually having fun with the creativity that it sparks in me each day.”
Reset the Area
“The variations between non-public and public areas are getting blurry: Your kitchen turns into a great Zoom name spot, and your eating room desk turns into an workplace, like that. Stephen and I work collectively, so it’s vital that we every carve out our personal areas. You possibly can create completely different zones, even inside a tiny condo. And the zones can change relying on the time of day: Take the time to place a eating material over the desk you have been engaged on all day. Clear the work stuff away; set a brand new ambiance.”
Totally different Scents for
Totally different Rooms
“As we’ve been growing Roman and Williams candles, working with this superb French nostril, taking part in with completely different aromas and smells, I’ve realized how scent—notably botanical scent—might help outline areas. I’ve a candle in a single perfume out on the desk the place I’m working, and I’ve a very completely different one within the bed room. The scent may come from a candle, incense, important oils, even superb flowers, and it transforms the ambiance, powerfully however subtly.”
Use one thing two methods
“You probably have a bit of glassware you like, use it as a vase. Your desk is a desk and a spot the place you eat: After we get environment friendly with our areas and objects like that, they tackle additional layers of which means.”
“My single favourite piece of cookware must be the donabe. It holds warmth completely, virtually like a tagine. We’ll slow-cook a lamb shoulder in it, have a form of conservative dinner the primary night time, then flip it right into a curry the second night time. Curry in a donabe is simply unbelievable. However then we additionally use it for ramen, yummy stews, rice after all, hen tagine… We even have some little ones which can be good for one individual—they preserve your meals so heat. I’ve even had a baked egg in a single to remind me of the eggs at our restaurant, La Mercerie.”
Take Care of Your self
“Maintain your physique the best way you’re treating your setting: Make it a ritual. My pores and skin has been so dry, so I’ve been utilizing so many nice moisturizers and oils, I really like the physique oil from goop, the Sturm masks, Goe oil—I’m simply coated in that—balms from Khus, lovely sandalwood oils. It impacts how you’re feeling, and the way you progress by means of your house and your day. Am I moisturized? Is the desk moisturized? It’s all taking good care of the bodily world round you.”
Have a look at the Gentle
“I’ve been considering lots about lighting and lightbulbs, and I’ve positively ordered a couple of extra dimmers on Amazon. At Guild proper now, lighting is promoting loopy nicely—it goes thus far in creating ambiance. Stunning lamps as a substitute of terrible overhead gentle? It’s night time and day.”
Embrace Your Human Artistic Spirit
“Everyone proper now—not simply people who find themselves ‘artists’ however even individuals who by no means considered themselves as in any respect inventive—is making issues, cooking, tapping into their pure creativity. We’ve been drawing and portray after which hanging a few of it on the partitions. It’s an amazing change of surroundings. When Stephen does it, it’s superior, and for me, it’s a pleasant outlet.”
Make Your Personal Nonetheless Life
“I’ve rearranged the highest of my desk about fourteen occasions this morning! Some individuals are having a good time rearranging their furnishings, which we haven’t accomplished a lot of, however no matter pleases you, rearranging it offers you a recent perspective. Particularly, I believe, bringing in one thing reside: Lower a small department—it may be very modest, simply what’s round you. A sprig of parsley in a glass could make you content. I like to carry lemons into the studio the place I’m working. You get that stunning colour, after which in the event you scrape the peel somewhat, you get the superb scent. Make your individual nonetheless life—attempt to make one nonetheless life each day.”
Decide a Nation for Dinner
“Everybody’s cooking, for almost each meal, so you must make it enjoyable. I really like the virtual-travel thought of ‘the place are we going tonight?’ We’re having dinners primarily based on India, then France, then Japan. The recipes, the music, the textiles…no matter units the temper for you, pile it on.”
Assist What You Love
“We work actually intensely with artisans whose work we love, and supporting them proper now feels so good. Something somebody’s making that you simply need to see extra of, assist these individuals! When you can afford a splurge, do it the place it’ll make a distinction.”