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Inside the stylish and unconventional Gordijn Studio

Curtain designer Phillipe Du Preez captures the essence of his avant garde approach in his maximalist new space in Cape Town Gordijn Studio

By Thobeka Phanyeko  | January 31, 2022 | Trends

On one of Cape Town’s coolest stretches, in the location of a former video store, Phillipe Du Preez’s Gordijn Studio is an expression of his unconventional perspective.

He says his approach is inspired by a deep appreciation for everything and anything done with good intent. ‘Someone once said there is no such thing as good or bad style, only a style executed well. So, I try my best to understand different styles, from Baroque to bare minimalism. By exploring these different “style languages”, you evolve, and your sense of style does too. So my style is ever-changing.’ As a creative, he gravitates towards the details, things carefully made and thoughtfully paired. ‘The truth is, I do not think my style can be described or defined because everyday life shows me something else that is wonderful and I am convinced I will be on this style journey until the day I die.’

Photo by Greg Cox

The Kloof Nek Road space – layered, rich, textured – was designed by Phillipe with the intention to capture the full effect of the materials, themselves big and loud and applied throughout the interiors. But it is people, he says, that bring a space to life. ‘We can only create a space, but without the observer’s interpretation that space has no meaning,’ he says. ‘So what we do is allow for our clients to explore and create. Through our use of different materials and colours, we try to make the experience as immersive as possible. What this does is create a sense of playfulness and fun, something often missed in our busy lives.’

Photo by Greg Cox

As a guest, you experience a familiar feeling when entering the space, a kind of design deja vu brought on by the traditionalism of the space, yet there is an invisible impetus to try something new. This juxtaposition is a recurring theme, something that Phillipe was intentional about when it came to the layout, colours and textures. ‘I hope our space tells a story of what is possible to create in Cape Town. Everything in the shop has been carefully made by the women behind Gordijn Studio or crafted by local tradesmen,’ he says. ‘What is on display is a fraction of what can be created, and I trust this is how the customer will engage with it, that it will start the process of wonder. What can be done with some skill and the right fabric is endless.’

For more on Phillipe Du Preez’s work, you can find him at Gordijn Studio.

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