Andrea Savage’s newly renovated home is everything you would expect of an award-winning interior designer. A visually arresting design scheme? Check. Bespoke furniture? Check. Objets d’art, mementos and sleek appliances? Check, check and check.
“As designers we are exposed to so many new products, materials and fabrics. We have the opportunity to put them into our clients’ spaces, and sometimes we too fall in love with something we feel can help push boundaries in design — and we can do so within our own homes,” says Savage, partner and project director at Design Intervention and a co-star of HGTV Asia’s latest home makeover series, Come on In.
With bold pops of colours, a skillful mix of patterns and even elements of whimsy (from chevron flooring and art deco cabinetry to baboon-patterned wallpaper), her home’s current guise is a showcase of feminine eclecticism. Previous makeovers have seen Savage put on her designer’s cap, flitting from minimalism to maximalism with nary a tassel or cushion out of place.
“I love re-decorating. If I had it my way I’d do it all the time but that would drive my husband crazy!” she admits.
Interestingly, Savage only ventured into interior decoration eight years ago, after almost a decade of modelling and walking the fashion runway. “I’ve always enjoyed interior design. Part of it came from my mother who loves colours and incorporated all these interesting details into our home.”
What’s your definition of home?
It is a place where I feel safe and calm. My home is my happy place. On days when I feel overwhelmed or frazzled, I just come back for half an hour and then I’m ready to get back to what I was doing.
As a professional interior designer, what’s your design mantra?
We are a bespoke design firm so we pay a lot of attention to the wish lists of our clients. Sometimes they may not necessarily work and we are honest with them about it. I emphasise on incorporating possessions, ones that hold special meaning to them, into their home. It could be an extensive art collection or trinkets they have collected during their travels. Don’t build a designer home just to impress; it should reflect who you are.
Is your own home a mirror of yourself then?
Many items you see in my home are made here in Singapore. They were designed by me and are truly one of a kind. I have lived here for 18 years and discovered and met many talented artisans. We don’t give them enough credit. My dining table, for example, is made from granite and took 10 men two hours to position it where it is right now. I wanted it to be masculine but also exude femininity so I incorporated pink marble elements into it.
Do you design around your household appliances?
Appliances now showcase great design, look sleek and integrate into a home seamlessly. Take the LG SIGNATURE OLED TV for example. It is so thin and integrates with the entertainment system without a hitch. A young IT guy came over the other day to fix it up for me and was so impressed he asked if he could take photos to show his friends. Interior designers used to hide TVs all the time but they have since become part of the decor.
Are more clients asking for recommendations on appliances to accentuate their design schemes?
Several of them pay a lot of attention to the refrigerator especially those who love to cook. For the men, it is how they put their stamp on a space. The LG SIGNATURE fridge can easily become the centrepiece of a kitchen, especially with its InstaView Door-in-Door technology. You knock on the glass twice and the fridge lights up to show you what’s inside. Apart from the cool factor, it also helps save energy as you open the doors much less.
What other white goods would you consider important in your home right now?
In the past I wouldn’t have thought much about air purifiers. But we live in a time where air quality can be less than ideal. When you have children, you want them to be surrounded by fresh air free of chemicals and dust particles. There’s also the new LG SIGNATURE washer-dryer with TWINWash system, which works great for me. I like that it is both a washing machine and dryer and can even be controlled using your mobile phone. From a design perspective, I love that it’s been designed to look like the moon.
Any advice for anyone considering a renovation?
Take your time and allow the natural process of design to take its course. Along the journey you will discover your true aesthetic. It is better to wait and see it all come together, so don’t go buying furniture or anything key without finalising the design!
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