hl next level 2018: interior stylist and decorator juliette arrighi de casanova

Trevor Stuurman
Juliette Arrighi de Casanova began her career as a stylist for decor magazines, and then honed her skills assisting Andrea Graff, one of South Africa’s leading interior designers. Juliette has worked on many interior projects to date, but says a sizeable one in Angola was a particular highlight, she says. ‘Next, I’m working on a truly innovative home – a first of its kind in Africa – and can’t wait for it to be revealed.’

did you always want to be doing what you’re doing now?

I’ve always been drawn to beautiful homes and interiors. Plus I was born to a mother who shares an inherent need to surround oneself with beautiful things. She taught me to appreciate quality textiles, unique spaces and inspiring creatives. I’ve also always possessed an obsession with colour and organization – it’s the way my brain is wired. I loved to make things as a kid: jewellery, art, all sorts of things. I studied law briefly, but decor journalism and creating roomscapes in a studio is where I honed my skills and the rest was the result of a natural progression as a creative. I adore working with people: fellow creatives and clients the like. So interior design is the perfect fit for both my capabilities and my personality.

do you have any particular favourites among the works you’ve created?

My own home. My matchbox-sized, one-bedroom apartment feels like living in a jewel-box boutique hotel. It has such personality and it always surprises my guests.

which creatives are on your radar at the moment?

Russian interior designer Daria Zinovatnaya – her use of colour and pattern and her unique signature aesthetic is so exciting. And local jewellery designer Sibu Mlangeni of Nutcase Acts – a friend treated me to one of his necklaces (made from old zips!) and I feel like a queen in it, like I can conquer the world.

where do you find your inspiration?

Magazines, Instagram, fabric houses, runway collections, nature. You have to see the world in 3-D, all the time. I find inspiration in the strangest places. I’ve been known to use a pattern from knock-off Spode crockery and blow it up onto wallpaper, so almost everything inspires me.

what is your earliest visual memory?

A self-portrait I painted on the back of my bedroom door as a child.

which city would you say that everyone should try to visit?

Paris – if it gets into your system, it will never leave you. It just changes you. I am beyond spoiled to have roots there and visit family there often. Every street corner offers something to the artist and the romantic in me. It’s simply soul food.

what’s the memorable exhibition you’ve ever seen?

The most memorable mix of art, fashion and set design I’ve ever seen was the Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams exhibition I attended last year in Paris. It was like nothing my senses had experienced before – nor since. Learn all about the game changers who are taking things to the Next Level in our #HLNEXTLEVEL2018  issue.