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Through the Keyhole: Brahm’s understated fusion on The Bishops Avenue 14 December, 2009

Posted by Bethany Wrede Peterson in Bethany's blog, Through the Keyhole.
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Being an interior designer is no easy feat.  Between long lead times and demanding clients, tricky deadlines and oh-so-many fabric colourways to choose from, the aesthetic stakes are high, and you have to execute your design concepts perfectly in order to proudly attach your name to any project.

Interior designer to the uber-wealthy, Pierre Brahm, strikes this perfect balance with his fusion of styles.  It’s no wonder then, that his his firm should bear the stamp of his distinguished surname.  Pierre’s thirty years in the business mean this is a man who know the ins and outs of orchestrating good design.  And while Brahm interiors speak for themselves, we got the chance to chat with Monsieur Brahm himself about his latest project on ‘Billionaire’s Row’ – three flats at 49 The Bishops Avenue in Hampstead.

Image credit: Brahm

‘It was important that the space combined different modern living with effortless comfort, with each room evoking a different feel and emotion,’ Pierre tells us about the project.  ‘You can really get a sense of this from moving through the property.’

We couldn’t agree more.  Pierre’s look embodies a stately, eclectic mix of styles that commingle seamlessly throughout the spaces.  We’re loving this American-inspired Adirondacks-meets-Manhattan rustic lodge of the dining room above.  While rustic isn’t often thought of as chic, Pierre keeps the dining room stately by incorporating a silver-dipped take on the iconic Saarinen tulip dining table with these oversized silver antler candelabras and a fluid and sumptuous grey palette that’s quite simply design genius.

Image credit: Brahm

While one reception follows the same austere colour palette as the dining room, drawing its sense of movement from a large sunburst mirror and beautifully bespoke contrast-piping furniture that complements the large airy windows, another branches out (quite literally) to another design destination.

‘The living room is a focal point of Meditteranean fusion – one that combines St. Tropez glamour with a touch of Tuscan elegance, ‘ remarks Pierre of his work on the penthouse.  ‘With an incorporation of antique and modern styles, [we wanted each room] to come alive with creativity and culture.’  While the geometric shapes and greyed-out royal purples carry the regal air of the south of France, a warmer palette recalls the the dusty roads of Italy.  The branch motif of the toffee wallpaper is sophisticated without being stuffy, and the shimmer of the velvet sofa is tactile and inviting.

Image credit: Brahm

If there is one design principle Pierre lives by, it’s to create spaces that incorporate the people living there. ‘We always strive to add character and charm with personal touches,’ he adds.  Where so many designers create residential spaces that work well for commercial hotels, but neglect to cater to the people living in them, Pierre’s take on the most intimate residential space – the bedroom – is one of opulence and glamour where fine attention is paid to the details.

Image credit: Brahm

The dramatic noir feature wall of the master bedroom above is completely unique while remaining sensually alluring, and the little touches of comfort in the powder-blue satin button-backed headboard in the guestroom below remind that while it may seem like you’re staying at a boutique hotel, you really feel right at home.

Image credit: Brahm

For Pierre and everyone at Brahm, however, it’s not simply about the bespoke design, but the attention to personal details that make a house a home.  ‘Fresh flowers, plants, personal photographs, artwork, pets – evidence of the personality of the people that live there – without these, a home can come across as characterless,’ he iterates.

Image credit: Brahm

Not surprisingly, the words ‘design trends’ do not escape easily from his lips.  ‘We are constantly evolving our style and techniques in order to stay at the forefront of design.’ says Pierre of his firm. For him, Brahm is not a firm that seeks to follow trends, but one instead that sets the trend by forging its own character for his clients with luxurious bespoke pieces, careful attention to colour, a successful melange of cultures and unique personal touches.

Aptly, Pierre tells us: ‘Timeless design is always in fashion.’  And we couldn’t mix it up better than that.

Love Brahm’s look but can’t afford The Bishops Avenue? (Don’t worry, we can’t either!)  We’ve found key pieces from Pierre’s style for you to steal.  Click on the moodboard to view selected products.

Moodboard: Bethany Wrede Peterson

View our 3D room of Brahm’s design of the reception by clicking on the room below.  You can even copy it, redecorate, or add new furniture!

3D room: Jennifer Evans

Tell us what you think. We’d love to hear your thoughts on Brahm’s eclectic elegance and our new Through the Keyhole feature.  Just add your comments below.

Think your home has the panache to be spotted through the keyhole? Send us the dish on your digs along with your best home snaps to editors@mydeco.com and your pride-and-joy may be spied next!

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