At Bklyn Designs: Aviva Stanoff

“Deliberate Luxury” is the philosophy behind the incomparable collections of Aviva Stanoff. Her handmade textiles and home decor goods have won the loyalty of such big industry names as Dior Couture and Barney’s.

Although Aviva now lives in New York, her work is a true reflection of her childhood background when she lived in Santa Cruz and summered in Japan. Today, she finds “inspiration in the subtle palette of nature, the deliberate minimalism of my tradition, and the city sunset I see every night from my design studio window.” This luxury goods maker has translated that beauty and restraint into a successful business and a devoted fan base.

At Bklyn Designs: Aviva Stanoff

The result of her aesthetic is a series of refined collections, including silk bedding, pillows and table runners as well as a line of handmade vases. Citing Christian Dior and Takashimaya as clients, Aviva knows a thing or two about deliberate luxury. And for high end, design driven clients the studio offers unparalleled custom patterns and products. That’s true luxury.

The designer took time out of her week to talk with us before the BRKLYN DESIGNS show to tell us more about what inspires her. Here’s what Aviva had to say:

I love the focus on “Deliberate Luxury” in your collection. How did the concept (or the phrase) come about?

Deliberate Luxury is a mindful decision in purchasing products. I think it came about when I was "negotiating" space with my husband in our tiny apt. I realized that I had to be very choosy in what I brought in- not only with decorative items, but shoes, even pots and pans! It's a space issue mainly... In addition to that, I think consumers are exposed to so many options today. When they come across something special, their eyes know it, their hands feel it... We are hand - made, hand - printed, hand -sewn. All this is done locally. When you put this type of product next to something mass produced offshore, it's a deliberate decision - Deliberate Luxury.

You’ve clearly married the livable elegance of modern American design with the rich qualities visible in Japanese textiles. Is it ever difficult to achieve that balance?

This I have my parents to thank for - I'm half Japanese, half Russian.. Every year up until my early 20's I summered in Japan - in a town called Okayama. We are temple people - my grandfather was a Buddhist priest, and now my cousin runs the family temple. We grew up going to Festivals, wearing Summer Kimono's and running all around. They would send us to flower arranging or calligraphy classes to keep us out of trouble - these lessons in subtlety and aesthetics sink in. Imagine us little sunkissed California girls helping grandma prepare flowers for morning and evening services - everything in was just so, nothing more, nothing less. The beauty is in the Japanese aesthetic, it carries onto floral arranging, gardening, tea ceremony - textiles is just one layer...

You cite Christian Dior and Takashimaya among your clientele. Did you envision your hand made pieces being such an international success, or does it take you by surprise?

I am surprised - I'm surprised I survived in NYC this long... its so busy here - there's not a tremendous amount of time to savor these things... there are deadines! We are always running from one project to the next. I feel like I'm living in a watercolor painting - one project flowing into the next.

Globetrotting plays a major role in the lives of most designers. What locations offer you the most inspiration?

I try to enjoy every city I go to - I'm the girl on vacation sketching, collecting, sifting through old books, fleamarketing, etc...every where I go. Its hard to turn off! Recently I've been inspired by Jaipur, Tianjin, Chang Mai, Paris, Santa Cruz ( California), the area around the Volcano Arenal in Costa Rica, even Brooklyn!.... There's beauty and inspiration to be found everywhere...

Brooklyn is enjoying a creative explosion right now. How are you and your Brooklyn-based team influenced by the neighboring creative community?

I am proud to represent Brooklyn and its fearless world of design, and art. Our neighbors are furniture makers, fine artists, recording artists. Being part of this energy makes it easy to be fearless. You're not the only one staying late and painting - whether on fabric or musical notes on paper - we are all here - being creative. The general energy alone is hugely inspiring. It feels like home - remember playing with all the neighbor kids near the house your grew up? It feels like that - like a fun adventure.

What do you enjoy most about your work?

I love creating things that inspire people to be appreciate nature, art, and handwork. I also love representing Brooklyn. Our product is a bit different - we press real objects into fabric... one at a time - to order.... I like seeing the wonder in their eyes when they see the collection and hear how its done.... I'm sure they think we're a bit crazy...

Any upcoming releases studio from your you’d like us to be on the lookout for?

We are working on Holiday and Fall Winter 2008 Collections right now. It will be a bit more playful than usual - our studio is experimenting with Origami, Snowflakes, and Orchids... Did you know that if you fold 1000 origami cranes, a wish comes true? Its true. Our new colors will be Calypso, Silvers, and Ivoire...

At Bklyn Designs: Aviva Stanoff

Be sure to stop by and get to know Aviva Stanoff and her at collections at BRKLYN DESIGNS. You will no doubt be blown away by the attention to detail in her products. Even if you won’t make it to the show, sign up to receive her catalogue and be added to the newsletter. You’ll be delighted when a little ‘deliberate luxury’ shows up in your mailbox.

Leave a Reply