ISSUE 36  |  Minimalist Glamour

Mastering Warm Minimalism: Ilse Crawford in Copenhagen

September 08, 2014 9:00 AM

BY Christine Chang Hanway

Wherever Ilse Crawford goes, we follow. The London-based designer has temporarily moved her office, Studioilse, to Copenhagen and is taking up residency at The Apartment, a gallery founded by former Sotheby’s specialist Tina Seidenfaden Busck that features modernist art and design in an 18th-century space presented as if it were a private home. Orchestrated by Studioilse and introducing several of the company’s own new designs, the setup will be home to Crawford and her team through the start of November. “We always had the intention of bringing the Apartment to life as a home, not a gallery,” Crawford told Wallpaper Magazine. “We like to see the rooms in use.” Toward that end, there’s a calendar of  lectures and kitchen suppers for the fall. And even without any visitors, the spaces have taken on an invitingly lived-in look.

Photographs by Casper Sejersen for the Apartment, unless otherwise noted.

Above: Furnishings in the new space are a mix of Studioilse designs and 20th-century gallery pieces from the Apartment. The living room showcases the new Ilse Sofa, a three seater with mohair velvet upholstery designed by Studioilse and manufactured by George Smith. Floor-to-ceiling heavy gray curtains match the walls and, when closed, envelop the room.

Above: Gray details–a sheepskin on Franco Albini’s rattan Gala Lounge Chair designed in the 1950s, and charcoal area rugs over the plank wood floor–bring warmth and cohesion to the space. The domed light is available from The Apartment. Photograph by Daniella Witte of The Style Files for Femina

Above: Dark gray walls sit above white wainscoting that wraps around the room. The furnishings include a Kalman Standing Floor Lamp and Table Lamp, as well as the pair of Tobia Scarpa Lounge Chairs. The Brass Cocktail Cabinet of oak and polished brass is another Studioilse debut in the Apartment.

Above L: A tall potted plant presides over a quiet reading corner with a wood-framed canvas chair. Above R: The Marble Bookshelf, a brass-framed piece by Belgian designer Muller Van Severen, displays books, objects, and lighting. Photographs by Daniella Witte of The Style Files for Femina.

Above: In the office, model prototypes and sample finishes sit on the table in front of a mood-board wall.

Above: In a room for reading, an elegant hammock puts in a surprise appearance over a Moroccan Beni Quarain RugVitsoe shelving and a Studioilse Low Bench that can be used as a step stool maintain organization across the wall.

Above: The dining room will be the setting for a series of informal Kitchen Table Talk suppers on Thursday and Friday nights prepared by local up-and-coming chef Frederik Bille Brahe. Guests will be invited to explore the quarters and take part in discussions about life and design; reservations can be made through Brahe’s restaurant Atelier September. In the space, two Studioilse Together Tables have been pushed together to create one long dining surface. Tall-backed Studioilse Benches mixed in with Hans Wegner PP58 Chairs keep the long space from looking like a boardroom. The Ilse Brass Candleholder by Georg Jensen adds a touch of minimalist glamour.

Above: In the kitchen, light wood cabinet faces sit within a black frame. Photograph by Daniella Witte of The Style Files for Femina.

Above: The Studioilse Companions Bed and Writing Desk anchor the bedroom, complementing gallery pieces from the Apartment, including a Gio Ponti Dining Chair, a reissued Snoopy Table Lamp by Italian designers Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni from 1967, and an Italian Brass Mirror from the 1950s. The bedside light is Studioilse’s W084t Task Lamp.

Above: Crisp white linen refers back to the white wainscot and the architecture of the room. 

Above: Crawford takes a moment on her Ilse Sofa. “We toyed with the idea of calling the collection Invisible Furniture because, though each piece is beautiful in its own right, the starting point for everything has been that it supports daily life and daily rituals,” Crawford told Wallpaper Magazine. “The pieces that we pulled together in the Apartment are the antithesis of showstopper design, where form is prized over function.”

Above: Ornate stairs lead up to the Apartment, which is in an 18th-century building in Christianshavn, in the heart of Copenhagen.

Interested in seeing more Ilse Crawford and Studioilse? Have a look at these posts.

And if you like the idea of shopping in an apartment, A Soho Dream Loft (Where Everything Is for Sale) is closer to home.