Mod­ernist rein­ven­tion

véronique and Jack-eric Piedeleu have taken an ar­ti­san and colour­ful ap­proach to de­sign­ing both their home and their home­ware store Car­a­vane

Living Etc - - CONTENTS - Pho­tog­ra­phy/frenchie Cris­to­gatin Words & Styling/emma J Page

véronique and jack- eric’s un­con­ven­tional style fills their parisian abode

When Véronique Piedeleu and her hus­band Jack-eric make changes they don’t

do things by halves. A few years ago they left be­hind their old subur­ban house and ca­reers in the world of com­merce and rein­vented them­selves with a new mod­ernist home and a hip in­te­ri­ors brand to go with it. ‘Our pre­vi­ous home was a clas­sic Parisian town­house, com­plete with wrought-iron bal­conies and mar­ble fire­places, but we were ex­cited by the idea of mov­ing to a new place in this bo­hemian area,’ says Véronique.

The mod­ernist, box-shaped For­ties home that they now oc­cupy in an area of the city known for its mix of metal work­ers, ar­ti­sans and creatives, is a world away from their for­mer house. But it was a move that chimed with the cou­ple’s pas­sions. ‘I’ve dis­cov­ered that my hus­band is a rocker,’ laughs Véronique of Jack-eric’s re­cent foray into gui­tar play­ing. She her­self has be­come a ded­i­cated yogi. This clev­erly re­designed build­ing, which ac­com­mo­dates a mu­sic room and a yoga stu­dio, is ev­i­dence that the cou­ple put a sense of fun and in­for­mal­ity at the heart of their colour­ful home.

Now the French home­ware store Car­a­vane they bought seven years ago has evolved into a brand with a re­laxed, in­di­vid­ual feel, with shops through­out France, one in Copen­hagen and two in Lon­don. That same in­di­vid­ual air per­vades their home too, with its mix of bam­boo and eu­ca­lyp­tus fur­ni­ture, eth­nic tex­tiles and vi­brant art­work. But it wasn’t al­ways so – in fact, the cou­ple nearly walked away af­ter their first view­ing. ‘Our only pre­req­ui­site was that we had to be close to na­ture,’ says Véronique. ‘This build­ing is perched on the edge of Père Lachaise, Paris’ largest ceme­tery, and when I saw the head­stones from the win­dow, I told our agent, “for­get it”. But some­thing per­suaded me to re­visit, and when I did, I felt a sense of peace. There was po­ten­tial to cre­ate a ter­race too, so I re­alised we could make this a mai­son va­cances – a per­ma­nent hol­i­day home.’

In­spired by Le Cor­bus­ier’s sim­ple lines, Véronique and Jack-eric spent two years sim­pli­fy­ing the lay­out of this box build, where main liv­ing spa­ces now oc­cupy the first floor, ac­cessed by a con­tem­po­rary wooden stair­case, de­signed by ar­chi­tect Aida Dja­han­dari. A top storey, hous­ing bed­rooms, bath­rooms and an ad­di­tional, smaller roof ter­race, was added by the cou­ple. ‘De­sign­ing this home was a way to ex­press how much my life had al­tered,’ re­flects Véronique, who gave away all her fur­ni­ture, re­tain­ing only a pre­cious an­tique chest of draw­ers gifted to her by her grand­mother.

Ed­u­cated in an­tiquing and ‘art dec­o­ra­tive’ by her grand­mother, Véronique is now a trea­sure hunter of a dif­fer­ent sort, scour­ing the globe for un­usual ac­ces­sories and tex­tiles made by in­de­pen­dent ar­ti­sans. In­dia is a favourite des­ti­na­tion and its vi­brant colours awaken not only her dec­o­ra­tive skills but her culi­nary senses. ‘I book a cook­ery les­son in ev­ery coun­try I visit,’ she says, ‘so In­dian dishes are very much on the menu now.’

If the cou­ple’s pre­vi­ous home told a con­ven­tional story, the nar­ra­tive here is very dif­fer­ent. A ter­race with fig trees leads off of the open-plan liv­ing area, which com­prises a sit­ting room, study nook and kitchen. The colours of na­ture have been mag­ni­fied via a pal­ette of vivid blues, yel­lows and greens, punc­tu­ated by a dra­matic shot of turquoise in the low-slung so­fas, which Véronique chose so as not to ob­struct the view. ‘I’m into more dar­ing colour com­bi­na­tions now, such as the che­quer­board kitchen units in lime green and grey – dec­o­rat­ing should be fun and in­for­mal,’ she says.

‘When the ren­o­va­tion was com­pleted, I felt like a cook who had spent hours work­ing up a sup­per for guests, only to find that I had no de­sire to join in the feast­ing,’ says Véronique. Luck­ily, the en­tre­pre­neur has since re­gained her ap­petite in ev­ery sense – most Sun­days are spent round the ta­ble shar­ing lunch with her grown-up chil­dren Ca­pucine and Robin, while the house ben­e­fits from an ever-ro­tat­ing dis­play of arte­facts, tex­tiles and art­works. ‘A scheme has to evolve organically, so I love switch­ing up the look,’ she says. ‘As you can imag­ine, the stylist in me can’t get enough of that.’

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.