A design firm in Indianapolis brings together vintage and modern finds to create bright, airy dwellings.
Above: Design by Haus Love with Sorenthia Sconces in Black Poppy by Studio DUNN. All photos courtesy of Haus Love Interiors.
Great design happens across the globe. Today I'm putting a pin in the map on Indianapolis, IN, home to Heidi Woodman, principal and owner of Haus Love Interiors.
We love this firm for the fearless way they take on contradictions and make them work together. (Personally, I think the world could use a little more of that these days!) "Updated Traditional" and "Bohemian Modern" may sound like contradictory terms, but when you see the projects they describe on Haus Love's website, they make complete sense.
I checked in with Heidi to learn more about her signature style - bright, eclectic, timeless spaces that are simple but oh-so livable.
Q: Please tell us a bit about yourself and your work.
A: We are a full service design firm, specializing in a mix of modern/contemporary with vintage pieces from all periods. Our philosophy is to give our clients a space that is not “over designed”, but providing them with a unique, lived-in aesthetic that is warm and inviting but still well curated.
Q: Your aesthetic is bright, airy and eclectic. What are the top 3 strategies you use to create this signature look?
1. We try and use only white or black paint (or somewhere in between but on that scale!) to keep things very tonal.
2. Balance is very important. We implement it with scale, a mix of masculine and feminine elements, negative and positive space, and different textures.
3. Bringing in older, vintage pieces to balance and compliment the tonal upholstery furniture we use is another key element in creating our signature look. The balance of the old and the new keeps the design interesting and always different.
Q: What are some of your favorite vintage finds that you’ve incorporated into your clients’ homes?
A: I’m obsessed with African wooden bowls. I use those often. For one of my very first clients I incorporated a 10 ft tall gilded pier mirror, from the mid 1800s. The rest of the room was modern and all white. It was insane!
Q: Using mirrors is a tried and true way to create brightness and the illusion of space. Can you share your favorite projects using mirrors, and what tips do you have for doing this successfully?
A: Yes! We try to incorporate them as much as we can. I love love floor to ceiling mirrors for drama. I also like to strategically place a mirror so that when you walk in a room, it’s reflecting a piece of art or an interesting architectural detail. I use more decorative mirrors in place of art sometimes as well.
Q: Based on your experience, what advice do you have for someone who wants to restore and update an older home?
A: Find a reputable contractor, and you don’t have to stay true to the architecture of the home when implementing your design aesthetic. If it’s a traditional Tudor, go modern if you want! That’s what is so charming to me about a well designed older home.
Q: You do work all over the country, but you’re based in Indianapolis. What do you love about your hometown? Can you tell us a bit about the local design scene?
A: The restaurant scene here is really growing. Aside from design, I probably am just as obsessed with good food. A lot of local chefs here are really doing some interesting, progressive, yet familiar menus that inspire me.
Q: Who do you admire today in the architecture and/or design fields, and what are they doing that you admire?
A: We are all currently in love with Jessica Helgerson, based in Portland, Oregon. She has a way with using bold, saturated color in design, without it looking tacky to be honest. That’s a struggle for me, and she makes it look so easy! That’s really inspiring to me.
We also love Deborah Berke! She’s an incredible architect that recently completed this stunning modernist home in a neighborhood just a few minutes from our office. It’s all black zinc on the exterior, and the balance of bringing the outdoors indoors is just beautiful. The design is seemingly simple but so impactful.
Simple but impactful. It seems contradictory, but we've all experienced how the simplest things in life (and in design) can also be the most impactful.
Like Heidi, we at DUNN are drawn to exploring the intersection of opposites - natural and industrial, traditional and technological, complex and simple. Creating this balance takes skill and practice, but when it's done right, it appears effortless. Heidi and her team have mastered the effect. Each Haus Love space has a look of the ethereal, while still managing to be down-to-earth and approachable.
While I may be able to put a pin on my map - and on my Pinterest board - for Haus Love, what I can't pin down is the intangible quality of their sublime designs. But I can do what they suggest - love it! Thank you, Heidi, and the Haus Love team for sharing with us.