The name of a new project by the Olga Fradina Interior Design was born while its creation. Starting from an apartment for rent, it has been gradually transformed into the client’s place of power and space for meditations and tea ceremonies with sole-mates. The client is a famous Katya Bakhirka, an owner of fashion brand Bakhirka Apparel, a founder of a charity foundation devoted to saving the indigenous people of the Amazonia – The Deep Forest Foundation, and a hip-hop singer known as BAKHIRKA. As Katya told in one of her interviews, music for her is one of the means to get in touch with like-minded people. Here, in the DzenSpaceClub project, design became such a medium. Olga Fradina was chosen as her “own kind” designer for Olga’s Instagram profile. After interchanging references with a customer, having preferred a dark theme, and adding on Katya’s request the deep blue to the gray color scheme, Olga had made the interior-to-be visualization, which was confirmed by the client, and so the approval process was over. “There were no doubts or complicated solutions in this project for me. I made everything as if I made it for myself”, Olga Fradina commented on the DzenSpaceClub workflow.
The apartment is situated near Bulvarno-Koudryavskaya Street in Kyiv, on the last floor of the old brick house, atypical for 5-floored buildings of Soviet times. As for the size of the gross floor area being not so big (only 45 sq.m along with a small bathroom), it is obvious that there had to be a replanning to make enough space for all expected functional zones.
By moving a wall dividing the bathroom, entrance hall and a living room, there appeared to be a more spacious bathroom, thus a full-sized shower unit could be installed, and in an entrance hall there emerged enough place for storage systems. When a bedroom moved to a place, where initially a kitchen had been, a main living area, the DzenSpaceClub, jigsawed like a puzzle, where every part was in its due place. It became possible because all the furniture but for chairs and a sofa was designed by Olga Fradina exclusively for the project.
A multifunctional space including kitchen zone, dining area, home office, wardrobe room, and tea lounge looks not overweight due to forms and colour balance, involving a dark ceiling, which has made the room seem higher. There are no doors between rooms in the apartment, thus enhancing a feeling of vastness.
A primary designer’s vision suggested a dark-grey floor and wooden chairs on it. This combination served as a boon to the whole project. Smooth microcement on the floor, walls, and built-in storage and kitchen facades made a perfect background for objects with vivid texture: a low wooden tea table, made by Staritska maysternya by Olga Fradina’s design, wooden rattan wicker chairs by Eichholtz, wooden shelves, bamboo shutters, sisal carpet, bricks under paint, and last but not least, wooden siding of the ceiling.
This last element unites the whole interior composition, balances the volumes of two main textures (microcement and wood), and turns the initial space drawback – a sloping ceiling – into a wabi-sabi aesthetic hints, which can be traced in other parts of interior, too.
Olga Fradina prefers to create mixtures of different styles to give her design eternal, not transitory trendy look. The DzenSpaceClub is composed of intricateness of ethno and modernism. The Aristide chairs by Eichholtz were invited to play a star part of interior modernists. This model was inspired by design icons of mid-century XX by Pierre Jeanneret, made for Indian city Chandigarh by Le Corbusier project. To accompany the chairs Olga designed her own modernistic homage – a shelf with sliding doors, with a Riflesso by Charlotte Perriand (1958) as a reference. The theme also applied in a black round wooden dining table, made by Olga's design at Ukrainian Staritska maysternya. The furniture of simple geometric forms resonates with laconic decor: traditional Ukrainian "hlechyky", designer's ceramics by Vos`ma Komora and Olga Fradina.
A round mirror above a French sofa is placed opposite a window on purpose – Olga likes to decorate this way. As a result of such placement, a mirror makes an illusion of a window on a blind wall and allows more daylight to a room. Light scenarios depend on zoning, and there is a dimming option.
The bedroom appeared to be rather small, so there are only essential things: a bed, a mirror, a stool for a bedside table, and a shelf with clothes hangers. There is a picture "The Burning Bush" by a modern Ukrainian artist Alexander Bogomaz above a bedhead. Art in the interior is an integral part of Olga Fradina's projects. While designing any interior, Olga always wonders which artist's works would enhance the air of this interior and would gratify clients for years. In this case Olga envisioned a picture from a sacred series by Alexander Bogomaz for two reasons: these works matched the palette and reminded for the designer a Tibetan thangka, but for a Christian context, thus empowering an Oriental feel of the project. This very artwork was chosen with a client at the artist's studio.
A concurrence of ideas with a client and a feeling they are on the same page followed Olga on all stages of the project, including decorating. Some decor elements of the DzenSpaceClub were Katya's property before. Besides, the fact there was an album of a Belgium art dealer, collector, interior designer and a Wabi-Sabi follower Axel Vervoordt hints at the nonrandomness of Katya and Olga's encounter.
View on bathroom.
Furniture: dining chairs – Eichholtz; tea table, dining table, shelves – Staritska maysternya; sofa – Anaelle, Maisons Du Monde (France); kitchen, cases, consoles for lamps in tea lounge, and poufs – bespoke made.
Materials: microcement, tinted pine plank (ceiling), paint – Paint & Paper Library, tint “Kigali”.
Light: above the dining table – a pendant Plate Lamp, FILD; table lamps on both sides of the sofa – Zara Home.
Art in the interior: painting "The Burning Bush" by Alexander Bogomaz, a poster by Olga Fradina Art.