Designer, India Mahdavi, having had enough of being asked about endless home design tips at her dinner parties, has created a book that will ensure her peace at the next one she hosts. Although bold enough for the coffee table, Home Chic is more of a guidebook than an accessory. Practical, despite the beautiful illustrations and its very personal tone, the book contains a selection of pointers on how to understand space rather than simply decorating it.
Published by Groupe Flammarion, the book is divided into two main sections: the home guide and the designer’s top design venues across the world. The last section, Mahdavi’s ‘City Guide’, takes the reader from Beirut to Siwa, via Mumbai, Cape Town, and Los Angeles, and reinforces Mahdavi’s international design fabric.
The attractive publication has a flexible gold cover, a buttercup yellow inside cover, and carefully chosen eye-popping pictures that perfectly capture Mahdavi unusual flair.
The pages inside reveal some of the designer’s most iconic work, including Parisian projects such as the bedrooms at theHôtel Thoumieux and the ‘venus and mars’ leather studded walls at the Paradisio cinema, as well as her collaborations with Elle magazine and IKEA. However, the book also takes us right to the heart of Mahdavi’s home, and showcases examples of golden interior design rules, like how to best use a chaise longue to add interest to a room, tips on dressing tables and how to choose kitchen seating where examples such as the designer’s mismatched Osso chairs or Friso Kamer are shown. The book also contains a selection of very easy home decoration tips that don’t require knocking down walls or camouflaging tiling. Other great tips include how to assemble a wall of photos in frames so that it isn’t overwhelming to the eye, and how to turn bric-à-brac into an arty bohemian area of interest.
Rather than being a DIY handbook, Home Chic is a guide; India Mahdavi gives the reader specific things to look out for, like keeping strong colours contained in small spaces and sticking to objects and furniture sourced from no more than three different decades. Lots of the tips in the book are illustrated by images of some of the interior designer’s most successful spaces, showcased by the various private residences she has worked on as well as more high-profile spaces like the Coburg bar at the Connaught Hotel in London and Café Germain (Thierry Costes) in Paris. Here, she advises on combining diverse styles, periods, fabrics, and materials around a common theme – the golden rule for achieving that signature Mahdavi touch.
Home Chic is akin to being able to peek through a door left ajar into Mahdavi’s private design realm, letting us finally peer into the secret behind the harmony of a style that should be busy and frenetic. Neatly packaged in this beautifully-illustrated manual, here at last, are the true golden rules of comfortable contemporary design.
Text by Rooksana Hossenally for Yatzer.com.
photography : www.india-mahdavi.com