Belgian designer Jean-Philippe Demeyer describes his do the job as “fearless and joyful.” It’s a excellent two-word thumbnail, to which you could possibly want to insert “exuberant,” “playful,” and even “anarchic” for the fuller picture. He promises not to have a model, but this would seem disingenuous coming from another person whose creations are so exclusive. Just take Gigi, a trendy bar and cafe in Ghent, Belgium, its interior bursting with color, body fat stripes, punchy patterns, and a lemon-scattered carpet defying gravity to climb the walls and walk throughout the ceiling. This is the reverse conclude of the aesthetic spectrum from the cerebral magnificence of his revered countryman Axel Vervoordt. “I have great admiration for the do the job of other decorators,” Demeyer claims, “but I can only be myself. My tips arrive from gut feelings—first about locus genii, then architectural framework. From there I can get started layering and storytelling.”
Like all layout specialists, Demeyer flexes his design to accommodate his purchasers, and is inevitably most himself when it arrives to decorating his very own households. Right up until a short while ago, he merged lifestyle and get the job done in a moated medieval hunting lodge, with stables and an orangery where he had places of work, a textiles workshop, and a household shared with his companions, Frank Ver Elst and Jean-Paul Dewever, that was also a showcase for his layout strategies. They not long ago concluded restoring and decorating a dwelling in Bruges, but prepare to move again when they find one more home “with enough room to experiment,” says Demeyer. For him, household is as a lot inventive playground as retreat. “We are all companions in the business. Frank has a incredibly great eye and reins me in when I go also considerably. Jean-Paul is finance and firm,” he suggests. The a few of them satisfied on a beach 20 decades in the past and have been together ever considering the fact that.
While their most recent household was a do the job in development, they wrapped up the renovation of their second, in the vicinity of Comporta in Portugal, last calendar year. “We drove to a wedding day in Spain, and while we were being there I read through a sentence in a vacation magazine, ‘Comporta—Europe’s ideal-kept mystery.’ We created a detour on our way dwelling and fell in enjoy with the place—more than 35 miles of empty beach, so substantially room, clean up Atlantic Ocean, pine trees and paddy fields.” They bought a plot near the beach front but ended up thwarted by organizing regulations, then identified a tiny farmhouse 50 % an hour’s push inland, surrounded by practically 45 acres of olive trees and cork oaks.