Today, Brittni has created another super nice Open House Tour for us and she 'visited' the home of Berlin-based creator Tania Patritti. Tania works full-time on her shop, Ninon, and has been making imaginative, one of a kind creatures and other bits and bobbins for the last four years. Her eclectic style mixes wonderfully with the light and airy space she resides in. Enjoy the tour…and big thanks to you Britnni!
1. In what kind of home do you live and with whom? I live at the ground floor of an apartment house built in 1899. It is a 96 square meters 3 room apartment. I share it with my boyfriend, who bought it 5 years ago. We live in Friedrichshain, my favorite Berlin district.
2. What is your favorite thing to create for your shop?
I like very much sewing and making different things with fabric, but I absolutely love making my Les Monstris. My soft toys are the things that make me jump out of bed in the morning when I have new ideas for how to make them. I do hope that I will always be able to live off of making them!
3. Running a small business by yourself is bound to have its ups and downs. What has been the best advice you have received as a business owner? And what advice can you share on getting a business started?To be honest, I don't remember a particular advice that has been given to me. From my experience, my advice is simple: don't give up. There could be very difficult moments when self-esteem is down under your feet and it seems that it's not working. But if you really believe in what you create you will have the strength to go on with your project and sooner or later someone is going to notice your efforts. Pretty obvious I know... but I have bad moments like those almost once a week. Another aspect that I think is very important is, if it is possible; try to concentrate to your projects full time! I tried to do other part time jobs together with my sewing, but I realized that was causing me to do badly at both things. So, I had to cut down all my expenses to the bone, but I am much more satisfied with the results on my Ninon Project.
4. You currently do not have any children. Do you think that becoming a mother is something you see in your future?We have no children at the moment, but I think about it almost every day... I really hope I will be able to go on with my project. My boyfriend is a musician and we both work from home: obviously having a child would bring huge changes into our daily routine and also in the way we use the different spaces of our home. I would probably have to give up my studio for changing it into the child's room, or we would have to look for another house… I don't know now. But, one thing I am sure of is that I can't wait to make all sorts of things for him/her, and I really hope that we will be good in raising up a person with the knowledge of the importance of being creative.
5. How has having such a creative career inspired you in decorating your home? For me, it is very important to live in a space that talks to me, that makes me feel that it belongs to me. Being able to sew helps me a lot in achieving this nice feeling… Almost everything that can be made with fabric around the house has been made by me, for example the curtains, bed linen, and lampshades. I wish I was able to make some sort of rug or carpet though.
6. How would you describe your design style?don't know if there is a word that can describe it. It is me plus him: he likes things that are modern, clean, neutral, and then there is me with my passion for color, layers, different pattern combined together, vintage or odd objects. I think that at the end we fit well together, compensating each other's taste.
7. You have an adorable, cozy kitchen. Who is the cook of your family? And what is your favorite meal to make?I am the cook at home, even though Mr C is the expert in panini and snacks... I am vegan and he's vegetarian, but me being the cook he practically eats vegan too when at home. I really love cooking and eating. Our favorite meal is a homemade thick pizza, topped with tons of veggies and eaten sitting on the sofa watching a movie.
8. You have some great staple pieces of furniture. What piece are you most fond of in your home, and what drew you to it initially? I think the wooden cabinet in my studio is one of the favorite items in the house; partly because I bought it for storing my fabrics, which are my main passion. I had been looking for a long time to find a piece of furniture that would be nice enough for them. Hehe. But it was also the first piece of furniture that I actually owned. When I started living in my boyfriend's apartment, only one year and a half ago, there was much less furniture. It was very nice, but a bit too minimal and modern for my taste. I am very chaotic and I have a tendency to collect a lot of objects and I like color and vintage stuff. I have to say that he's been great on letting me spread all those me-like things around the house, you know, that "woman’s touch".
So, I bought the cabinet last summer in an Antique Shop in Neukölln, a district south of Berlin where there are tons of thrift/antiques stores. I was in a serious need for a storing solution for my studio still one year after my move, as I was still working with most of the fabrics in some cardboard boxes under my table. I was really looking for THE cabinet, and I didn't want to go to Ikea for it.
9. As you just mentioned, you collect small items and objects, which can be seen throughout your apartment. When did you start collecting and why? I have the habit to collecting little objects that I like, I've been doing this forever but not with the idea of starting a collection. It is just an aesthetical need, urging when I find myself in front of something tiny that is speaking to me. Most of these objects are childhood related, like little toys (I love plastic dinosaurs) or vintage children books. To me they are like a personal treasure and an endless source of inspiration for my characters.
10. What do you look for when buying new art for your home?
At the moment I have to admit that we have more art in our drawers that on the walls. I am still looking for some nice frames to put things up decently (and, Mr C is not a very big fan of wall hangings). But I have to say that most of the things we own are from friends. I like the idea that if I hang something on my wall it is because it means something to me and/or it reminds me of someone that I know in person.