Interior Design Interviews

Interior Style Hunter interviews Henriette Von Stockhausen from VSP Interiors

1st September 2016
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Henriette von Stockhausen and Jane Petti founded VSP Interiors in 2000. This high end interior design practice has carved out a unique niche for themselves in the interior design sector. With a focus on timeless classic design which they fuse with modern and personal elements which enables them to work on grand country estates and super modern city pads.

Henriette Von Stockhausen, Co-Founder and Designer at VSP Interiors

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What is your design signature/style?

Coming from an antiques background and having worked with Stephen Ryan, I would say my style is classic in architecture and bones, colourful and eclectic with a mix of old and new – particularly modern art.

What type of people do you love to work with as clients?

I love working with creative people who have a slightly open mind and are adventurous. 

I also adore working with young families to develop designs for their first big family home – whether that’s a new build or renovating an old house- and helping them to get exactly what works for their individual lifestyle, yet is practical and fun at the same time!

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Can you tell us about a particularly exciting/challenging project?

I have just completed a large renovation of a grade 1* listed country mansion in Buckinghamshire which was very exciting. It involved me working with some great people in the industry – using amazing custom-made materials, antiques and even a custom paint colour for the house – I love a challenge too!

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Does your home reflect your professional style?

It does and it doesn’t – as in there are so many inherited pieces in here that I may not have chosen myself but that I have incorporated into the house as they have huge emotional value. 

The style of an interior is, to a certain extent, led by the architecture and type of home. Our house in Dorset is an old stable and carriage block which we converted.  As such, it marries old structure with new interiors so I designed the rooms to be sympathetic to both.

I love colour and have used it extensively in my own house as it makes me happy – the same goes for mixing antiques with modern art and more contemporary finishes. For example, my kitchen juxtaposes an Aubusson Tapestry with a white lacquer kitchen, concrete surfaces and a rustic 4 metre table. The drawing room had an old fashioned verdure wallpaper interpreted in a modern way by Melissa White. I have added a pop of vibrant red colour to it by way of trim to give it a little edge and add interest. Upstairs I have painted circus stripes in the kids’ wing as I wanted to create something fun for them.

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If you had £10,000 to spend on a piece of furniture/accessory/art/decor item, what would it be and why?

I would either buy one of Ed Kluz’s amazing big collage paintings of the big house – the grounds of which are home to our renovated stable and carriage block – it was sadly demolished in 1935.

Alternatively I have been desperate for some scenic wallpaper from de Gourney although not sure £10,000 would cover it as I have these really tall ceilings!  I particularly like the designs ‘English Landscape’ with its rich and vibrant greens, and the ‘Early Views of India’.  Both would go into my dining room – a dream!

Another one would be the stunning Daisy hanging light in wicker from Soane for my hall; I am currently saving up!

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What’s next for your business/brand?

I am in the process of developing a furniture collection of “out of the ordinary pieces” which are items that I am always looking for and can never really find. The collection is based on a mix of rare antique examples and new designs. Watch this space; I am very excited.

Which new/up and coming designers do you currently have your eye on?

I love Rosi de Ruig’s gorgeous lampshades. Jamb are always bringing out wonderful new architectural pieces, furniture and lighting. I also totally adore the new wallpaper collection from Howe.  There are so many creative people out there it is hard to choose!

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If someone reading this was about to begin their own home redesign project, what would be your best advice to them?

First and foremost is to get the lighting right.  Think about how the room will be used and whether ‘task’ lighting is required, ie. Low level lighting over a table, reading lamps next to armchairs, etc.  Plan the wiring and sockets accordingly to ensure you will be able to create the right atmosphere.  This should be seen as the foundation for creating your room and once you have the right level of warmth other elements can be added.

Be brave with your choices and the main thing is to enjoy the process of making something completely yours – it’s very special! Use old and new – incorporate personal memories and belongings – perhaps make lampshades out of a map from a special family holiday – use things you have picked up throughout your life.

You can contact Henriette through her website VSP Interiors.

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