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HENK at home with Florence Cools

In the series 'HENK at home', we visit people who inspire us to give you a glimpse into their daily lives. This time we visit Florence Cools, co-founder and creative director of La Collection, at her home in Antwerp, Belgium. La Collection is a modern, conscious luxury fashion brand she founded in 2017 with her husband Artur Tadevosian. We talk about her approach to design, what she looks for in a piece of furniture, and buying less but better.

How would you describe your interior style?
Minimalist with a casual touch. I don’t like a traditional approach; in our home, one piece of furniture or accessory is a design brand while the other is from a flea market. 

What’s your greatest source of inspiration as creative director of fashion brand La Collection?
Art inspires me; contemporary and abstract art are excellent sources of inspiration, especially when it comes to colours. The colours of our Fall Winter 2023 collection, for example, were entirely inspired by an Alexander Calder sculpture.

What are you most proud of in your home?
I’m most proud of my ‘small’ but growing art collection, with works by Illeana Moro and Eleanor Herbosch. 

What do you take into consideration when purchasing a new piece of furniture? 
I believe it’s important to have a specific feeling about the piece, and that it fits with the existing collection. If I notice that I can’t get a piece of furniture out of my mind, I know it’s OK to purchase it! I buy everything for life and want to assemble a beautiful collection of quality pieces over time. 

How does sustainability play a role in your life? 
Sustainability is so intertwined in many aspects of my life. For me, it’s about choosing high-quality pieces I know I will use for the rest of my life. I can save up and look forward to purchasing that perfect item, and then cherish it forever. This is true for my fashion purchases, my interior pieces, and even the renovation of our home.

You have the Studio HENK Base Chair, Base Sofa, and New Co Coffee Table. What do you like about these designs? 
I’m drawn to the minimalist lines and the beautiful dark smoked wood. The lines of the Base Dining Bench remind me of a sofa from a monastery but with a modern twist. The Base Chair and New Co Coffee Table also have an air of zen about them; together, they create a corner where I can relax in between life’s busy moments. These are the things I look for when buying a new piece of furniture.