What is minimalism? How to design spaces that embody permanence and warm minimalism

What is minimalism? How to design spaces that embody permanence and warm minimalism

While minimalism has its appeal, the distinctly sparse and sometimes clinical feeling the style can create is not always a sought-after aesthetic. Enter warm minimalism, the antidote to sparsity that results in welcoming and uncluttered spaces.

Words by Clare Chapman

In an unassuming space in central Queenstown, nestled among eateries, souvenir shops and adventure tourism spaces, is the SLOW studio. Metres from its doors, Lake Wakatipu laps at the shore – beyond which various mountain ranges rise around it in formations of dramatic peaks. The view is a constant reminder of the vast scale of the natural world and our small yet impactful presence within it. 

It was here, within this sought-after destination of unparalleled beauty, that SLOW began as a response to the owners’ desire to live a more conscious and authentic life. We spoke to co-owner Martina Blanchard about the rise of SLOW and a design intention that encompasses the very contemporary aesthetic of warm minimalism. 

ArchiPro: What is warm minimalism?

Martina Blanchard: Warm minimalism represents spaces that are restful, welcoming and uncluttered. In interior design, this translates to simple and clean spaces that are accentuated by the use of natural materials, textures and objects that have pronounced design aspects and/or sentiment, be it in their visual or functional form – but ideally both. 

Our brand encompasses the values of permanency, quality, attentive craft-design, sustainable practices and social awareness. The start of any change in our lives begins with parting ourselves from the old, so that new, fresh and long-lasting experiences can enter our lives. On a material level, this translates to decluttering from fleeting trends and objects without function and those with mass-production attributes. 

Warm minimalism represents spaces that are restful, welcoming and uncluttered.

SLOW began following your desire to live a more conscious and authentic life. How have these themes been wound into what SLOW offers?

We have handpicked products that hold the qualities of SLOW’s core ethos, offering an array of authentic brands that can make a difference in your life. Authenticity is central to what all our brands do, how they do it and for whom, referencing their cultural heritage of craft and design history with new perspectives that resonate with current times. This is why we always want our customers to slow down and get to know our brands as we do, so they leave our space well informed about their design choices and the ‘stories’ they embody. 

All originating in Scandinavia, each of our brands represents a unique and niche approach to design. For example, New Works Studio focuses their design process on materiality, underpinned by elements of maturity; AYTM is original, elegant and colour-focused; and Ferm Living centres its design philosophy around a passion for authentic design and clear functionality. 

Authenticity and permanency are core pillars of the SLOW ethos. When designing spaces for permanency, what are the best ways to incorporate objects that will stand the test of time yet retain vibrancy and relevance over the years?

Focus on the pillars of your space – including sofas, tables, kitchens, chairs, custom furnishings and lighting – which should exemplify non-intrusive and refined forms, putting emphasis on material, quality and function. 

Furthermore, these pillars should have soul; they should embody the story of the maker or designer and have traceable and transparent production processes. This is what will ground your home and provide the essential long-term bones for the more playful aspects of the interior that can be more interchangeable if you wish. Beauty, in any form, uplifts our mood so I always encourage my clients to surround themselves with objects, old or new, that will have this effect, such as feature lighting, hero chairs, planters and plants, ceramics and vases, sculptural objects, books, soft furnishings and other accessories that can be styled and rearranged in a myriad of ways.

What is your approach when developing bespoke interior designs for clients?

I listen, first and foremost. Then, I ask questions to understand the project and what the clients hope to achieve. We all have a different perception about how our home should look and feel. In combination with my approach to aesthetics, I strive to offer what I believe is an authentic style of living – creating homes in which people can feel comfortable by employing the concepts of warm minimalism and the intersection of classic and modern designs, all underscored by a passion for all things beautiful.

How do you approach each client or space differently?

The best approach to each individual space is to understand both the architecture and the external environment of the home, including its inner spatial flow – the layout and the journeys through the spaces. You can work with rooms of any size or shape but they should not be disconnected from the external aspects. This ensures that every project is unique. 

SLOW offers both a store as well as residential and commercial design services. Can you tell us more about your offering?

We are a dynamic interior studio that offers interior concepts design, styling and product sourcing for both private clients and commercial projects worldwide. Additionally, we offer creative direction for branding and commercial visual expression. We strive to create spatial balance and harmony by working with existing and/or new objects and designs that will create an overreaching, coherent language of style and aesthetics.

Find out more about SLOW and designing spaces that embody warm minimalism, permanency and sustainability.  

SLOW

Supplier of Contemporary Furniture, Lighting, Kitchens, Bathrooms, Storage Solutions and Homeware.  Understanding the design language of permanency where the...

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What is minimalism? How to design spaces that embody permanence and warm minimalism

What is minimalism? How to design spaces that embody permanence and warm minimalism

While minimalism has its appeal, the distinctly sparse and sometimes clinical feeling the style can create is not always a sought-after aesthetic. Enter warm minimalism, the antidote to sparsity that results in welcoming and uncluttered spaces.

Words by Clare Chapman

In an unassuming space in central Queenstown, nestled among eateries, souvenir shops and adventure tourism spaces, is the SLOW studio. Metres from its doors, Lake Wakatipu laps at the shore – beyond which various mountain ranges rise around it in formations of dramatic peaks. The view is a constant reminder of the vast scale of the natural world and our small yet impactful presence within it. 

It was here, within this sought-after destination of unparalleled beauty, that SLOW began as a response to the owners’ desire to live a more conscious and authentic life. We spoke to co-owner Martina Blanchard about the rise of SLOW and a design intention that encompasses the very contemporary aesthetic of warm minimalism. 

ArchiPro: What is warm minimalism?

Martina Blanchard: Warm minimalism represents spaces that are restful, welcoming and uncluttered. In interior design, this translates to simple and clean spaces that are accentuated by the use of natural materials, textures and objects that have pronounced design aspects and/or sentiment, be it in their visual or functional form – but ideally both. 

Our brand encompasses the values of permanency, quality, attentive craft-design, sustainable practices and social awareness. The start of any change in our lives begins with parting ourselves from the old, so that new, fresh and long-lasting experiences can enter our lives. On a material level, this translates to decluttering from fleeting trends and objects without function and those with mass-production attributes. 

Warm minimalism represents spaces that are restful, welcoming and uncluttered.

SLOW began following your desire to live a more conscious and authentic life. How have these themes been wound into what SLOW offers?

We have handpicked products that hold the qualities of SLOW’s core ethos, offering an array of authentic brands that can make a difference in your life. Authenticity is central to what all our brands do, how they do it and for whom, referencing their cultural heritage of craft and design history with new perspectives that resonate with current times. This is why we always want our customers to slow down and get to know our brands as we do, so they leave our space well informed about their design choices and the ‘stories’ they embody. 

All originating in Scandinavia, each of our brands represents a unique and niche approach to design. For example, New Works Studio focuses their design process on materiality, underpinned by elements of maturity; AYTM is original, elegant and colour-focused; and Ferm Living centres its design philosophy around a passion for authentic design and clear functionality. 

Authenticity and permanency are core pillars of the SLOW ethos. When designing spaces for permanency, what are the best ways to incorporate objects that will stand the test of time yet retain vibrancy and relevance over the years?

Focus on the pillars of your space – including sofas, tables, kitchens, chairs, custom furnishings and lighting – which should exemplify non-intrusive and refined forms, putting emphasis on material, quality and function. 

Furthermore, these pillars should have soul; they should embody the story of the maker or designer and have traceable and transparent production processes. This is what will ground your home and provide the essential long-term bones for the more playful aspects of the interior that can be more interchangeable if you wish. Beauty, in any form, uplifts our mood so I always encourage my clients to surround themselves with objects, old or new, that will have this effect, such as feature lighting, hero chairs, planters and plants, ceramics and vases, sculptural objects, books, soft furnishings and other accessories that can be styled and rearranged in a myriad of ways.

What is your approach when developing bespoke interior designs for clients?

I listen, first and foremost. Then, I ask questions to understand the project and what the clients hope to achieve. We all have a different perception about how our home should look and feel. In combination with my approach to aesthetics, I strive to offer what I believe is an authentic style of living – creating homes in which people can feel comfortable by employing the concepts of warm minimalism and the intersection of classic and modern designs, all underscored by a passion for all things beautiful.

How do you approach each client or space differently?

The best approach to each individual space is to understand both the architecture and the external environment of the home, including its inner spatial flow – the layout and the journeys through the spaces. You can work with rooms of any size or shape but they should not be disconnected from the external aspects. This ensures that every project is unique. 

SLOW offers both a store as well as residential and commercial design services. Can you tell us more about your offering?

We are a dynamic interior studio that offers interior concepts design, styling and product sourcing for both private clients and commercial projects worldwide. Additionally, we offer creative direction for branding and commercial visual expression. We strive to create spatial balance and harmony by working with existing and/or new objects and designs that will create an overreaching, coherent language of style and aesthetics.

Find out more about SLOW and designing spaces that embody warm minimalism, permanency and sustainability.  

Get in touch with
SLOW

Request pricing/info
Visit website
Recommended reading
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What is minimalism? How to design spaces that embody permanence and warm minimalism

What is minimalism? How to design spaces that embody permanence and warm minimalism

While minimalism has its appeal, the distinctly sparse and sometimes clinical feeling the style can create is not always a sought-after aesthetic. Enter warm minimalism, the antidote to sparsity that results in welcoming and uncluttered spaces.

Words by Clare Chapman

In an unassuming space in central Queenstown, nestled among eateries, souvenir shops and adventure tourism spaces, is the SLOW studio. Metres from its doors, Lake Wakatipu laps at the shore – beyond which various mountain ranges rise around it in formations of dramatic peaks. The view is a constant reminder of the vast scale of the natural world and our small yet impactful presence within it. 

It was here, within this sought-after destination of unparalleled beauty, that SLOW began as a response to the owners’ desire to live a more conscious and authentic life. We spoke to co-owner Martina Blanchard about the rise of SLOW and a design intention that encompasses the very contemporary aesthetic of warm minimalism. 

ArchiPro: What is warm minimalism?

Martina Blanchard: Warm minimalism represents spaces that are restful, welcoming and uncluttered. In interior design, this translates to simple and clean spaces that are accentuated by the use of natural materials, textures and objects that have pronounced design aspects and/or sentiment, be it in their visual or functional form – but ideally both. 

Our brand encompasses the values of permanency, quality, attentive craft-design, sustainable practices and social awareness. The start of any change in our lives begins with parting ourselves from the old, so that new, fresh and long-lasting experiences can enter our lives. On a material level, this translates to decluttering from fleeting trends and objects without function and those with mass-production attributes. 

Warm minimalism represents spaces that are restful, welcoming and uncluttered.

SLOW began following your desire to live a more conscious and authentic life. How have these themes been wound into what SLOW offers?

We have handpicked products that hold the qualities of SLOW’s core ethos, offering an array of authentic brands that can make a difference in your life. Authenticity is central to what all our brands do, how they do it and for whom, referencing their cultural heritage of craft and design history with new perspectives that resonate with current times. This is why we always want our customers to slow down and get to know our brands as we do, so they leave our space well informed about their design choices and the ‘stories’ they embody. 

All originating in Scandinavia, each of our brands represents a unique and niche approach to design. For example, New Works Studio focuses their design process on materiality, underpinned by elements of maturity; AYTM is original, elegant and colour-focused; and Ferm Living centres its design philosophy around a passion for authentic design and clear functionality. 

Authenticity and permanency are core pillars of the SLOW ethos. When designing spaces for permanency, what are the best ways to incorporate objects that will stand the test of time yet retain vibrancy and relevance over the years?

Focus on the pillars of your space – including sofas, tables, kitchens, chairs, custom furnishings and lighting – which should exemplify non-intrusive and refined forms, putting emphasis on material, quality and function. 

Furthermore, these pillars should have soul; they should embody the story of the maker or designer and have traceable and transparent production processes. This is what will ground your home and provide the essential long-term bones for the more playful aspects of the interior that can be more interchangeable if you wish. Beauty, in any form, uplifts our mood so I always encourage my clients to surround themselves with objects, old or new, that will have this effect, such as feature lighting, hero chairs, planters and plants, ceramics and vases, sculptural objects, books, soft furnishings and other accessories that can be styled and rearranged in a myriad of ways.

What is your approach when developing bespoke interior designs for clients?

I listen, first and foremost. Then, I ask questions to understand the project and what the clients hope to achieve. We all have a different perception about how our home should look and feel. In combination with my approach to aesthetics, I strive to offer what I believe is an authentic style of living – creating homes in which people can feel comfortable by employing the concepts of warm minimalism and the intersection of classic and modern designs, all underscored by a passion for all things beautiful.

How do you approach each client or space differently?

The best approach to each individual space is to understand both the architecture and the external environment of the home, including its inner spatial flow – the layout and the journeys through the spaces. You can work with rooms of any size or shape but they should not be disconnected from the external aspects. This ensures that every project is unique. 

SLOW offers both a store as well as residential and commercial design services. Can you tell us more about your offering?

We are a dynamic interior studio that offers interior concepts design, styling and product sourcing for both private clients and commercial projects worldwide. Additionally, we offer creative direction for branding and commercial visual expression. We strive to create spatial balance and harmony by working with existing and/or new objects and designs that will create an overreaching, coherent language of style and aesthetics.

Find out more about SLOW and designing spaces that embody warm minimalism, permanency and sustainability.  

Get in touch with
SLOW

Request pricing/info
Visit website
Done tagging
Full screen