MY FINDS: EVE MERCIER
There’s no denying that Eve Mercier has great style. The Parisian designer and art historian’s distinctive, fresh and vibrant taste is on display at INSIGHT School of Interior Design, the Chai Wan-based school she founded to give Hongkongers and those around the region a practical understanding of interior design and an education in project management. It’s also on show in the way she dresses, too: she always looks effortlessly chic.
Here, Eve gives us a sneak peek of the places, pieces and people who are on her radar right now. insightschoolhk.com
My secret city find in Hong Kong would be the Axel Vervoordt Gallery in Central. I had the chance to meet Boris [Vervoordt, who set up the gallery] and really admired the ethos of his family business, his search of beauty and authenticity through art.
I always travel with books. My husband doesn’t understand why I don’t read on an iPad or Kindle, but I like the touch and smell of a book. I always read two books at the same time; a serious read and lighter one. I also carry on my computer one or two recently downloaded films – I would have loved to be a film director in another life. Other than that, I travel light; I like to be taken by surprise wherever I go.
My favourite pieces in my home are my Anish Kapoor watercolour prints. They are powerful and poetic at the same time, and they have strong colours that bring a smile to my face.
The most fabulous place I’ve stayed is under a tent in Yunnan, through Caravane Liotard. Fabulous was maybe not the right word, but it was a unique experience to spend the night at 4,500 metres in minus 20 degrees, being served fabulous food on silverware after a very much-needed whisky aperitif that warmed our bones around a fire pit under the skies.
My favourite stores are stores that tell a story and reflect a strong sense of place. I recently discovered a hidden gem in Venice, Chiarastella Cattana. It sells the most beautiful linens, all produced in Veneto. Weaves to die for and subtle colours, the way the Italians do it best.
I also like all the little shops around the Tokyo fish market, I source everyday ceramics there. And I like the Kyoto flea market; I buy antique kimonos with the most striking patterns here for next to nothing. I wear them with black trousers and a T-shirt and that’s my look done for the evening!
For my home, I’m looking for a new rice paper Noguchi lamp. I bought one in the fantastic Noguchi Museum in the Bronx, New York, but unfortunately my very unruly Labrador mistook it for one of its toys.
For my wardrobe, I’m coveting a bespoke man’s shirt with my initials on it from Charvet, Paris. When I was a teenager, my father used to give me his old Charvet shirts to wear and I got hooked on their perfect cut and the quality of their poplin cotton. I like to mix them with something feminine for an androgynous look.
My ultimate summer buy would be a pair of Rondini leather sandals from St Tropez. This family artisan firm has made those shoes for generations in their understated boutique and the staff can design the sole to fit the width of your feet. These sandals are made out of the softest leather and they age beautifully.
A Hong Kong designer I love is Joyce Wang. Design should be about refinement, authenticity, quality and originality, and she scores on all the above.
At INSIGHT School of Interior Design, we’re putting together our next Certificate and Diploma courses for September. We have full-time and part-time residential certificates for people who want to tackle residential projects. They’re a good entry point into the interior design world. Then there’s the One-Year Diploma for people committed to embracing a career in interior design at a professional level.
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