Has all this time inside had you craving fresh home design inspo? Erin Baker chats to Sina Eggl, colour and trim designer at Rolls Royce, about the subtle little touches that make all the difference
We are all spending far more time these days than some of us might wish with two things: our family, and our interior-design choices. Is that wall, so daringly painted in Farrow and Ball Railings, now starting to look a little gloomy? Was that pink velvet daybed in fact a massive mistake?
Pity, then, the colour and trim design bosses of the big luxury houses out there, who have only their own four walls to provide constant style inspiration for multi-million pound products that their brands must sell whenever we emerge from the coronavirus crisis.
Sina Eggl is the 29-year-old colour and trim designer at Rolls-Royce. Locked down in her London apartment since coronavirus took hold, she talked to Marie Claire about her surroundings, her favourite objects at home and what the world of luxury design might look like on the other side of all this.
“You have to work with what you have”, she says down the phone line, from the confines of her flat. “The key is to have less; try to be simple. The interior of my apartment is furnished in a sustainable way – what you have should be well produced and beautiful. Furniture, for example, should last for ever and fit every season.
“At work I’m surrounded by mood boards and can become overwhelmed. I’m confronted with a million samples, colours and inspiring pictures every day. So rather than overcrowding the apartment, I just have a few pieces. The key for me is reduction.
“Some examples from my home include my Flexform Evergreen daybed by Antonino Citterio, which I think communicates more permanent style rather than a trend statement. I also love my Georg Jensen bar set, which is an incredibly beautiful, incredibly pure piece of design with limited decoration but unquestionable material and surfacing substance.”
Encouragingly for Rolls-Royce customers, Sina Eggl puts her money where her mouth is, as far as the link between her life and her work goes: she has examples of the box-grain leather (“a wonderfully haptic material”) that’s on the surface of the Rolls-Royce Cullinan covering her two monogrammed notebooks at home. Boxgrain leather has a ridged, almost bobbly surface, common on Louis Vuitton luggage in the Twenties, and is designed to be hardwearing, but to age gracefully, hence its use on the dashboard of the rugged SUV.
“Boxgrain leather has a deep grain, so when you run your fingertips along it, it makes them tingle”, she says, lovingly. “Equally, my raw wood desk has a deep grain that looks beautiful, smells incredible and feels so textured. This is certainly reflected in Rolls-Royce design: we have introduced “open pore” veneers that appear to have no lacquer on them, celebrating the raw materiality of each timber piece.”
Other domestic sources of inspiration for Eggl include a Theresienthal glass vase, which has strips of colour inside it that reflect the sunlight against the wall. “It’s a great inspiration when brainstorming new colours and colour combinations. I adore its simplicity, modernity and purity”, she says.
There’s also a framed floor plan of the penthouse at 432 Park Avenue, brought back from New York by Eggl’s fiancee. “I loved the level of of allure, detail and modernity, so I had to have it framed. I combined it with a vintage black and white photograph I bought at the Goodwood Revival festival, which is held next door to the home of Rolls-Royce. While the shop keeper couldn’t tell me which car race was depicted, I admired the aesthetic of this stunning vintage racing car’s iconic styling”.
Eggl seems well geared up for the world of luxury post coronavirus, where trends will surely echo a new-found respect for the natural world, authenticity, sustainability and a new era of calm. “We are now facing post-opulence design”, she says. “It’s about reductionism, the idea of not festooning stuff with stuff.” This idea had already started to form pre-coronavirus, with the idea of moving on materialism beyond bling, to luxury without unnecessary flourishes. “Clearer minds”, she says. “Timeless, elegant colours that will last for ever. Get rid of negativity and celebrate the things you love”.
There’s a lesson in there for us all.