“You should always have a mirror in your home”
Geometric perfection and a “less is more” philosophy characterise Italian architect and designer Monica Armani. Responsible for the boom in Italian design, Monica receives Premium magazine just hours before attending the Terraza Balear Summer Party, invited by Mariana Muñoz, owner of the renowned interior design firm.
It is said you are one of the best designers of space and are responsible for the current growth in Italian design, however you originally trained as an architect.
It’s a family thing. It’s inside me, in my blood. My father (Marcello Armani) was an extraordinary architect and also we lived in a stunning house, in the middle of the forest. This has clearly influenced my journey. In fact, I started out working together with my father. He passed on all his passion for culture to me. As well as the precision of geometry, an enthusiasm for details and the constant search for new ideas. To then make the move from architecture to interior design was a very natural progression. After all, designing furniture and designing a house are practically the same. I dedicate the same care, the same hours and the same passion.
Did you take the great leap with your husband, Luca Dallabetta?
Yes. I had the opportunity to make a collection of tables and chairs, and it fascinated me. It changed my life. That was the first of my designs and it was a complete revolution. That’s why I take so much care. Imagine, 50,000 units of one table sold!
Are Spanish design and Italian design so very different? Doesn’t the Mediterranean make us similar?
Yes, and no. I think the fact that Italy is the country with the most works of art, monuments and archaeological heritage gives us that something more. But it’s true that perhaps the Spanish are more organised. You have better infrastructures.
What is the key to success? How does one compete in such a global world?
By committing yourself to your own brand and design, and above all, creativity.
For those that don’t know your work, how would you summarise Monica Armani’s designs?
I would define them as “the equation of the details”. A style that is very recognisable, essential, timeless, ethical, European and feminine. I devote many hours to everything I do because I want to make a high-quality product, one that lasts for more than just one season. For this, I study the environment and space and seek innovative, technical solutions. It’s hard to believe, but some jobs take me months, even years to complete. You could say I unite industrial design with architecture and interior décor.
Does the decoration of our homes say more about us than we think?
Absolutely. A person’s personality is reflected in the furniture, the use of space, in the cushions, the choice of fabrics…
And what should be never be missing from our homes?
For the same principle as the fact a woman should always have a black dress in her wardrobe – a mirror – it’s an essential element that accompanies you throughout your life and each day reflects the person you are becoming. And it’s essential that you take it with you every time you move house. Like the ones on display in Terraza Balear for example.
What would Monica Armani like to do that she still hasn’t done?
I would love to design a hotel. I would take care of everything from the building, architecturally speaking, to the interior design. It’s on my list of things to do.
What Monica Armani designs can we expect to find here in Mallorca?
There are two products in particular that I have designed for two brands. On the one hand, there is a series of very large outdoor furniture that I designed for the company Tribù, with super-comfortable seats and unique, extra-wide braiding. On the other hand, if you visit Terraza Balear, you can find a range of mirrors just like the ones I mentioned, which I made for the Italian firm B&B. There is not one single joint on the aluminium frame. And lots of other things.
I invite you to visit Terraza Balear and see my work close up!