In Italy, a Fabric Designer’s Wildly Colorful Home

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The family-run Italian cloth home Dedar is beloved by the design cognoscenti not for its unifying aesthetic however for its freewheeling strategy to sample and texture. “Fabrics must arouse emotions, and in our approach, there is room for audacity,” says Caterina Fabrizio, 52, who, together with her 50-year-old brother, Raffaele, runs the corporate that their mother and father based in 1976 in Milan. In fact, what elicits that kind of response from them is very idiosyncratic, knowledgeable as a lot by their travels because the structure of Northern Italy, the place they grew up. The result’s a set that appears like no different and attracts purchasers such because the Italian director Luca Guadagnino, who featured one of many firm’s summary florals in his 2017 movie, “Call Me by Your Name”; the Italian inside designer Michele Bönan, who put in their elegant-but-durable upholstery all through the J.Okay. Place inns in Rome, Florence, Paris and Capri; and Hermès, which has collaborated with Dedar on materials and wallpapers since 2011.

Dedar — brief for design d’arredamento (design for interiors) — was began by Caterina’s father, Nicola Fabrizio, who started his profession promoting limited-edition lithographs and silk screens by postwar and Pop artists together with Robert Rauschenberg and Cy Twombly to the design commerce within the Nineteen Seventies. After that enterprise didn’t take off, he and his spouse, Elda, based Dedar, producing hand-woven textiles and sourcing vintage tribal rugs from all over the world, typically taking their two younger youngsters on shopping for journeys in India, Thailand and Anatolia. “We spent days in warehouses of rugs,” Caterina remembers. Within the early Nineteen Nineties, the Fabrizios determined to concentrate on artisanal materials after a collection of fortuitous trade-show encounters: The primary was with Jack Lenor Larsen, the éminence grise of late Twentieth-century American textiles, who started representing Dedar in the US after changing into besotted with its choices. Subsequent got here the French designer Jacques Garcia, who in 1995 selected considered one of Dedar’s damasks, patterned with vegetation and animals, to make use of all through the Hôtel Costes in Paris. What set the agency aside was its dedication to experimentation, working with craftspeople to develop new strategies — synthetics that really feel like silk, jacquards that seem woven in reverse — whereas incorporating wealthy colours and historic references as different as Japanese xylography (woodblock printing) and the intricate flower-and-bird patterns discovered on Seventeenth-century Chinese language ornamental screens.

Immediately, that mixture of outdated motifs and new supplies nonetheless defines Dedar. Caterina believes their creations, that are made by artisans all through Italy, in addition to France, Belgium and India, replicate a “contemporary way of seeing refinement.” Rendered in novel constructions, the corporate’s beautiful textiles are meant for use in on a regular basis environments — considered one of its hottest materials, SN Schwarzwald, might resemble a Seventeenth-century verdure tapestry, with dense woodland scenes in deep greens and blues, however is in reality a printed linen-cotton-canvas mix with a water- and stain-resistant vinyl coating.

Caterina’s personal weekend residence, a nondescript Nineteen Sixties-era field a brief stroll from the shore of Lake Como, enshrines this type of easygoing luxurious. The three-story, 3,550-square-foot open-plan Modernist home feels ethereal, regardless that it’s crowded with classic furnishings that she has organized with no overarching imaginative and prescient in thoughts. “Look around — there are very few things that are useful,” she says. “I buy things because they touch me, not because I need them.” She factors to a rickety wood chair in the lounge that she discovered a number of years in the past in a Normandy junk store: She anticipated its arrival for greater than a yr, regardless that it’s by no means snug. It’s only one instance of what she calls the home’s “randomness,” from a print of Twombly’s “Roman Notes” (1970) — pulled from her childhood bed room — in the lounge to a trio of pendants from the Nilufar Gallery in Milan that venture colourful shadows within the downstairs hallway.

When she discovered the home in 2001, she enlisted the assistance of her brother, who labored as an architect earlier than becoming a member of Dedar, and the Italian inside designer Vittorio Locatelli to reconfigure the unremarkable, flat-roofed construction. Raffaele took his cues not from the lake’s grand inns or the luxurious summer time palazzi constructed by outstanding Milanese households within the Seventeenth and 18th centuries however from the area’s Rationalist structure, significantly the Bauhaus-inspired buildings constructed within the Thirties by architects corresponding to Giuseppe Terragni and Adalberto Libera (each of whose legacies have since been tainted by their Fascist connections). Impressed by the unadorned rectangular construction and huge home windows of Terragni’s close by Casa del Fascio, accomplished in 1936, Raffaele put in sheets of horizontal plate glass throughout the home’s facade and related the three flooring with a refined slate spiral staircase. He positioned all three bedrooms on the bottom flooring, then opened up the highest two flooring to create a relaxed setting. “I saw that I could make a bad building from the 1960s into a good building from the 1930s,” he says, gesturing to the white partitions and Lavagna stone and oak flooring, which give a impartial canvas for his sister’s magpie sensibility.

However Caterina’s passions are, unsurprisingly, greatest revealed in the home’s many materials. From the horizontal black-and-white stripes on the dwelling and eating room curtains to the textured beige pillows on a nubby cotton jacquard bedspread in the principle bed room, the décor eschews all clichés of a conventional seaside home, regardless that the hillside property overlooks the lake. Essentially the most hanging instance is the third-floor sunroom, which opens onto a terrace scattered with palm bushes and prickly pear cacti. Its partitions and ceiling are lined in wallpaper in a colourful jungle sample that Dedar produced for Hermès. Within the middle of the room is a pair of Nineteen Sixties wicker chairs fabricated by Bonacina, an organization identified for its rattan, upholstered in a geometrical African-inspired woven silk. A pale crimson Indian kilim on the ground — which Caterina swaps out for a plusher rug within the winter — underscores the room’s layered, eclectic appeal.

Dedar, after all, wouldn’t exist with out Caterina’s father and mom. Nor, she says, would her eye: “My crazy parents wanted to escape Milan and let us grow like wildflowers.” On the outskirts of the village the place she spent her childhood, Fino Mornasco, six miles from her present weekend residence, the Fabrizios lived in one of many Seventeenth-century outbuildings on the property of a grand villa, the place their neighbors have been artists. Each Caterina and Raffaele left the village for college in Milan, however the enterprise, and particularly the prospect of elevating her two sons in a extra laid-back setting, finally drew her again to Como in 2001. (Now that her youngsters are adults, Caterina spends most weekdays at her house in Milan’s Brera district, an hour to the south.) To start with, the choice to return to Como, just like the design of her residence there, required an actual leap of religion — which, to Caterina, feels paying homage to her cloth enterprise: One is compelled to think about Dedar’s choices on a chair or made into curtains with the blind hope that, as soon as put in, such decisions will elevate the house they’re in. “In the end, either you hate it or you love it,” she says. “But when you love it, you really remember it.”

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