Igor runs a popular blog called Happy Interior Blog, I look forward to his new posts popping up on my feedly reader. He has a love of plants, and talks about plants a lot, which is great as you can so easily add a strong statement/feature to a room just by adding a plant.
There is a lot more to Igor though, but I’ll let you discover that while reading the interview.
What is your design signature/style?
I would call it urban bohemian – it is a mix of styles and influences reflecting my mixed background, my traveling soul and my love for foreign cultures. I love to mix ethnic influences with urban elements and thus create a space that seems to have grown through travels and personal experiences while being aware of its very urban roots.
The Happy Interior Blog is a very popular blog, and I would like you to tell us how you make an interior ‘happy’.
My personal stance is that interiors are happy if they are styled and created with love, passion, personality and a smile on your face. Look around your home – do you love what you see? Do your interior choices make you smile or frown? Only add what you love and what makes you happy. Eventually these will be the choices reflecting your personality and making you very happy with your home.
It would be great if you could share a picture of the happiest part of your own home and tell us what about it makes you happy.
I have attached a picture of my recently restyled living room. It captures the essence of urban bohemian in my understanding. I love the vivid mix of patterns yet the colours remain saturated and calm. I love the mix of a kilim rug evoking far away travel destinations and past times and a NYC city map poster claiming the urban identity of the space.
You started Urban Jungle Bloggers a few years ago, how has it gone and can you tell us a bit more about the project?
I started the green community Urban Jungle Bloggers in 2013 with my friend, fellow blogger and plant lover Judith de Graaff of JOELIX.com. Our intention with Urban Jungle Bloggers is to raise the awareness for living with plants – the benefits of green living as well as the beauty of a green home. We both believe in better homes created through living and thriving plants. With our monthly styling challenges for the Urban Jungle Bloggers community, we put a green topic on the monthly blogging agenda. And we have more than 800 international bloggers joining us and recreating their spaces with plants.
Can you share a highlight of your design career with us?
I always smile when I get questions regarding my design career. Why? Because I am not pursuing a design career. I have never worked professionally in interior design or the likes. I have a degree in international business administration, I have worked in PR and marketing and currently I am a social media manager for a big corporation. Interior design and styling is a passion of mine and Happy Interior Blog is its digital platform. However I can name a few highlights as a blogger – I loved working with big international brands such as Ikea on projects and campaigns.
Which designers do you currently have your eye on?
I always have an eye on classics such as the Eames couple (I want to get hold of their Occasional Table), Norman Cherner (the Cherner armchair is on my wishlist) but also contemporary designers such as the Bouroullecs (I love their Ruutu vases designed for Finnish brand Iittala).
If someone reading this was about to begin their own home redesign project, what would be your best advice to them?
Don’t think of a redesign project as starting from zero. Rather take the existing room and the existing choices as a starting point. Sometimes it is good to remove things and pieces and see how the space changes by simply removing a rug, a piece of furniture or decor items on the shelves. You can then reconsider what you want to keep and what you want to toss, what you want to exchange with new pieces.
Think of a rough style you like, look on platforms such as Pinterest for inspiration and try to interpret that preferred style through your eyes. Think of colours you like and patterns that speak to you. Mix in a variety of textures for a cosy feeling and make sure you have a good balance of new and old pieces, personal items and travel memorabilia for a unique style.
You can get in touch with Igor through his website Happy Interior Blog.