In this episode, the IAHSP EU President, Sanja Radovanovic had the pleasure to interview Anna Daccache, the IAHSP EU 2022 Award Winner in the category of Best Luxury Home Staging.
S.R. Congratulations on winning the Best Luxury category! What does this award mean to you?
A.D.: Thank you in person and to the European association for making this dream happen!!!
This award in particular 1st place “best of luxury”means everything to me. It’s the recognition of passion, commitment and years of hard work.
It all came as a crescendo, starting in the darkness (a beautiful but lonely one; with no visibility whatsoever except our project and love for everything property and design).
I am tempted to say that every Luxury Home Staging project Atelier ADA achieved at the beginning was like a piece of firework in the dark night.
Then the UK & Ireland Association came, I was delighted and was one of the first members to join!
Followed by the ASP course, the discovery of the International & European Association and all the key personalities that made them.
My dark sky started filling with stars and it was beautiful…
S.R. Please share a few tips for creating a winning Luxury project.
A.D.: When friends and colleagues started asking about my award, I was telling them that I was delighted to have won “best of luxury” in particular because it’s the most difficult category.
Creating a luxury project is not the easiest as the expectations I are often very high.
It’s like selling a Cartier piece of jewellery. The packaging is as important as the content, it’s part of the experience and excitement.
We are talking here about LIFESTYLE, elegance and refinement.
My tips for creating a luxury project would be as follow:
First create a story. In our Barbican project every room had one. As an example we had THE “Master Bedroom”, the second master’s (guest bedroom) still amazing but a notch less and we decided to turn the 3 other bedrooms into a gym, a home office (with a single bed styled as a day bed) and final one kid’s bedroom. We were responding to one question on our list: How do you sell a five bedroom apartment to a “non-family” buyer at the same time show how this could be a great family home!
Style each room with attention to every single detail.
I look forward to the moment when at the end of a project we are curating our clients art collection! Some of them have exceptional ones! But when it comes to Luxury Home Staging every detail must be curated, the title of a coffee table book, the piping (or absence of it) of every cushion, the type of flower arrangement, etc.
Clearly define your colour scheme from the beginning. Even though we didn’t do any mood boards as such, we clearly defined the colour palette for every space. Oatmeal, taupe and beige were the dominant palette in the Barbican project with accents of black or grey but we had variations of these according to every space and taking into consideration light exposure in every room.
Consider texture and materials; very important as it’s about feeling and touching not only seeing.
Bedding and bed linens; it has to scream luxury. In our project it’s often the use of high quality feather and dawn duvets, pillows and cushion inserts as a starting point. You want to sink in!
It comes without saying that you will need large pieces of artwork that tell a story, iconic furniture and sculptures so don’t forget these!
You are telling the best story you can of A PLACE; often an exceptional one when it comes to the high end market in historical cities like London. Create a few scenarios and pick the best according to your potential buyers profile!!!
Finally but not last (as I can go on for hours and there are still points I didn’t elaborate on like smell and the use of home perfume).
INJECT POETRY!!! Work on emotions, on happy memories and sensations. This can be done in many ways but as an example we introduced large real blooming magnolia branches in one of the tall windows in our winning project. To me it’s bringing SPRING inside.
S.R. What is the most important aspect to have in mind when dealing with luxury clients?
A.D.: Your attitude and mindset is everything when you deal with luxury clients (often VIP’s even if you don’t know it) but also how you present yourself and your business.
I always have a blow dry before going to an important meeting -:) and make sure I’m stylish, elegant and professional (without overdoing it). Like your business card, your outfit is an expression of your personality and has something to do (even indirectly) with your next project!
S.R. Anna, you have attended the first Accredited Staging Professional ASP® course to ever been taught in Europe. How has the course been useful to your business or personal growth?
A.D.: I touch based on this point at the beginning but what I can say is that the course was a revelation. I needed confirmation that what I was already doing was the right thing, that I was on the right track (in many aspects from wording used when I pitch to an estate agent, to overall marketing and pricing).
As advanced as you are (I was already running a successful high end interior design & architecture studio for 7 years and luxury home staging business for 4 years prior to taking the course) but you always need to fine tune, to refine, to step back and look at the big picture.
I also found and met like-minded people and made meaningful, invaluable connections.
A final thing I want to add, this course goes beyond its content – it’s a door to mentoring and training if you want to open it and an invitation to be brave and bold and believe in yourself!
S.R. Please tell us a little bit about your Home Staging journey and what are the distinguished characteristics of Atelier Ada.
A.D.: I feel that I covered this somehow. To make a long story short I can say that I found my true passion in life, it all started 8 years ago when home staging was still emerging in Europe and often unheard of. It came to me by luck and “luck to me” is when you are open to possibilities, when you are a DOER, when you love and believe in yourself and others.
And Atelier ADA… Atelier ADA is my third baby, my soul and my life. I started this fantastic studio 12 years ago 1st to be free, 2nd to do what I love under my own terms and 3rd to become a “present and inspiring” mum. I was pregnant twice and had two beautiful children during this time. It didn’t come without hard work and sacrifice. I was on site, hands on, staging while nine months pregnant and had challenging high end projects on with “40 days old babies” on my hands .
Today we are specialised in high-end residential, Luxury Home Staging and in particular staging iconic pieces of Architecture. We found our niche “within the luxury niche” if that makes sense.
Please keep an eye on our blog and follow us on Instagram www.atelierada.co.uk & @atelier.ada.interiors
as we will be revealing very soon our latest transformation, a glass box house with a secret garden in the heart of Highgate Village.
Sold end of June 2022 on the day we launched!!!