We had the good fortune of connecting with Lieve Saether and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lieve, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
With my long love of spaces and a keen interest in taking rooms apart, a design firm of my own was certainly inevitable. I have been interested in function, form, and most importantly color and pattern, since I was a young girl. As a curious and creatively encouraged person, I developed myfirmto fill what I saw as a gap in pushing interiors into something unusual. When I began my business, a lot of interiors where finished out in neutrals. Beautiful, but lacking in something vivid, complex and full of how life really is. Since friends and acquaintances started to ask me to help them with their own homes already while I was at university, it was clear that there was a need to go back to somethingstriking bold and highly personal, which is how I develop each and every project – unique to the best parts of whom my clients are. My primary artistic function as a designer, is to push a client outside of their comfort-zone and create a luxe space entirely highlighting them.
What should our readers know about your business?
If there is a silver-lining in today’s pandemic world, it’s that people are re-examining what it means to take time for themselves or with others in their surroundings. It might be the European in me, but this has always been important to me – and in particular to how I design a space. The right interior fully represents you. It should define you, and in turn be a direct reflection of who you really want to be. It should encourage you to feel confident and go your own way; completely enhancing the things that make you, YOU. This has always been central to my design philosophy and goes with me into every one of my projects. I see myself as an educator that serves as an advocate for what my client might not yet be able to articulate. This is what has kept my approach distinctive and given me a business that is mostly through referral for fifteen years. I design spaces all over the world, and despite the needs and styles of different cultures, this thread remains the same. Through my creative lens, I seek to find out what makes my client unique, and show them what’s possible. My bold, colorful, yet refined approach wasn’t always en vogue, but I am thrilled to see people opening themselves up to trying out something that ultimately makes you feel good. Since I continue to push boundaries by using things in unusual ways, I aim to make materials the stars that enrich a space. Building on this “turned on its head’ approach to create a story at home is why I named myfirm companyTurnstyle Design.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I love the way Houston always feels a little old school to me; and I seek that part out, My favorites are places that have been there since the mid-century – particularly for art. So whenever I am in Houston, I head to straight to Rothko Chapel…without fail. Lingering in the quite solitude that this amazing artistic space provides, it serves as a palette cleanser of sorts. The chapel allows everyone to celebrate their own thinking in peace. A few steps away, The Menil Collection is usually next on my list. I have been there so many times, but somehow never tire of the incredibly important body of work it presents. This is largely in part to the architecture of the building. Renzo Piano’s airiness simply feels replenishing. The Museum of Fine Arts continues my day of art, since again, I love the building. Additionally, the tranquility that nearby surrounding Rice Village provides leaves you in a lovely neighborhood. The village is great place to meander, stop for coffee and chat with anyone really. A bit of Mi Golondrina shopping, followed by dinner at Cafe Rabelais is perfection.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My husband has a lot to do with the support in my career. Though my tenacity and goals have always been clear, he is always there to remind meof the bigger picture.I am forever grateful to have landed with someone whom I can trust will always be open to mylargeideas and who is ready to come along on the ride. Creative people need that reminder sometimes, and my other half does so with just the right amount of push.
Youtube: Turnstyle Interior Design
Portrait taken internally – image by Turnstyle Design LLC Portfolio images – by Twist Tours