Unusual and beautiful: these are perhaps the best words to use to describe the terracotta lighting range from NM Design, handcrafted by Paarl-based founder and interior designer Nelia Naude.
Naude grew up with creative parents; an architect father and ceramicist mother who worked with clay in her own studio. For her, getting into interior design seemed a natural fit. After cutting her teeth at a local design firm, she founded NM Design.
Her love for interiors blossomed into a love for designing custom furniture for projects. With insights from her father and mentor, she started designing custom-made furniture for her projects. Teaming up with her sister Xenia Venter (also an artists), her company expanded.
Now NM Designs, have a stunning range of custom furniture, art by Venter and ceramics on offer. They lean towards simple designs that are timeless.
the love of terracotta
For Naude, the terracotta and ceramic lights are particularly sentimental. As a child, her mother would take her to her pottery class. She would work with clay, building things like doll houses.
“Terracotta clay was always a something beautiful for me. Surrounded with pots and vases in our home and beautiful sculptures my mom made – terracotta was always seen as a medium to form art.”
Despite the idea of terracotta being ‘old school’, Naude continues to work with the medium. Her terracotta and clay light fixtures as well as he decor are hand made. Thus no two lights will be exactly the same. For naude, this medium is timeless and her creations are made to fit in any classic or modern interior.
When it comes to their products, NM Designs puts and emphasis on texture, whether its the wood of the furniture, clay of the light fixtures or the art. Naude works closely with her manufacturers. She has cabinet makers in Worcester and Johannesburg. All the ceramics are made in Stellenbosch, making NM Designs 100% local.