Elicyon design studio on craftsmanship, simplicity and the creation of “interior sewing”
Who are they?
Elicyon was founded in 2014 by architect Charu Gandhi, who previously worked at Allies and Morrison (where she contributed to the master plan for the London Olympics) and real estate developer Candy & Candy. His studio team includes Swedish-born Creative Director Cecilia Halling and Project Director David Harris – in a former role he oversaw the restoration of Burberry’s flagship on Regent Street.
Gandhi’s passion for design began in India, where she remembers seeing the construction of her childhood home. Elicyon’s creation was also inspired by her love of craftsmanship, which gave her a freedom she couldn’t find in the world of architecture. “With architecture, you can’t say that something is beautiful to be beautiful, which I found frustrating,” she explains. “The interior decoration does not complicate matters. ”
While at Candy & Candy, she was offered a renovation project in the prestigious One Hyde Park development, which marked the start of her new studio. “It opened my eyes to a multitude of manufacturers and artisans, especially British ones,” she says. This network of artisans has become an integral part of the Elicyon bespoke look.
What is Elicyon’s style?
Contemporary opulence, emphasizing beautiful materials, warm colors and eye-catching art. “I aim to create exquisite ‘interior tailoring’ – something that speaks to clients’ dreams for their home and evokes a feeling of space,” says Gandhi.
She cites a wide range of inspirations, from architectural icons such as Carlo Scarpa and Oscar Niemeyer to fashion and theater design. “I often look to art deco, mid-century and Biedermeier periods for inspiration for furniture,” she adds. “But I will also tap into other stylistic influences from around the world.” Japanese craftsmanship is a particular passion, especially kintsugi (repairing broken objects with gold) and origami.
What are Elicyon’s recent projects?
A number of residences in the restored Chelsea Barracks, including a show apartment. “Our designs were strongly inspired by the history of the site and its connection to two key materials, chalk and clay,” says Gandhi. “We chose a neutral, sandy palette with luxurious natural textures, such as terracotta ceramics. These refer to the annual “Collect” craft show held nearby. ”
Elicyon also designed a Mayfair apartment for a couple of art collectors, who explore “how paint colors and finishes catch the eye”: the master bedroom has a glossy pale blue ceiling. The works of art are illuminated with string lights suspended from bronze rails.
What are they currently working on?
A lakeside house in the English countryside, a penthouse at Battersea Power Station and another apartment at One Hyde Park, inspired by interiors from Ibiza and featuring touches of Yves Klein blue.
They say: “We always start by building a narrative behind every space – we want to create a livable and warm environment, not a stage set. ” elicyon.com
Elicyon’s advice for creating modern opulence
1 We like to incorporate custom pieces into our projects, specially designed for a client’s individual collections – books, jewelry or even drinks. They should celebrate your interests. Visit a fair that features bespoke makers, like London Craft Week and Brighton Craft Fair, or ask the Society of Designer Craftsmen for advice.
2 I take a different material route for each project, but at the moment I particularly like working with wood. We recently used petrified wall covering to add warm tones of burnt orange to a cigar room. Impactful materials like this are a great way to add richness to walls and ceilings – think beyond painting and try leather, suede, or hand-painted flowers on canvas.
3 Much of the selection of patterns and textures is about their brightness and how they reflect light in a space. I like to take samples from a property and see how they work before I make a choice.
4 Your art collection should tell the story of who you are and what you love. Don’t limit yourself to drawings and paintings – explore sculpture and ceramics as well. I like to use art to draw the eye through a space or to manipulate proportions and symmetry, like placing a sculpture on a plinth at one end of a room or hallway.
The little black book
Each project has its own unique list of suppliers and artisans …
I love the work of Polish multidisciplinary designer Marcin Rusak, specializing in innovative materials and artistic techniques – think flowers encrusted in glass or weathered metals fashioned into furniture, lighting and sculpture. marcinrusak.com
Gallery owner Sarah Myerscough always has something incredible to offer. She has a wonderful eye for manufacturers and collectibles. Its ‘Natural Room’ collection focuses on contemporary handmade objects in organic materials. sarahmyerscough.com
I am passionate about handmade glass and the Vessel Gallery in London is the authority on it. Renowned designers represented include architect Amanda Levete and Swedish designer Lena Bergström. shipgallery.com
Wrexham-based Silverlining Furniture creates museum-quality pieces from fine materials like leather and rare woods. I like their way of innovating within the framework of the craft industry; working with them is always exciting. silverliningfurniture.com