This journal is based on a feature first published in Danish interior magazine, Alt Interiør, March 2020.
Creative Director and founder of AIAYU, Maria Heilmann, lives just outside of Copenhagen with her husband and three children. Her style is minimalistic with a love for clean lines, light colours and natural materials, bringing a tactile and natural atmosphere that is very peaceful to her home.
‘I love diving into different textures and surfaces. I’m astonished by just how many looks the same material can have, depending on the way you use it and mix it. Different variations can turn something simple into a very sensory experience.
Being a family of five, my home needs to withstand wear and tear. We love company and having friends over. A relaxed atmosphere is key, so that everybody feels home and safe. To me, it’s always been about keeping a balance between the aesthetic, the practical and the relaxed.’
Made to last
To Maria, it’s important to feel a connection to the things, she surrounds herself with. They need to be timeless, both in terms of quality and design. But, most importantly, she likes to surround herself with things that are made to last.
‘I’m very much against the buy-and-throw-away mentality. That’s why I try to keep furniture and items made from superior quality in my home – things that do not need to be replaced, all chosen with great consideration and care.
I just recently sold my couch, and because I have yet to find a replacement, we are currently using our 10-year-old daybed that we moved down from the office. I would love the new couch to have a removable cover – no one should be afraid to spill on it.’
‘When it comes to my private home and my professional life, the most important thing is that objects should be made with love and respect for the people who made it, and for the world that surrounds us. This is also the case when it comes to the production at Aiayu. I’m constantly trying to figure out new ways to make as little an imprint as possible. This is also why we make rugs out of our leftover cotton production.
Recently, I was standing with some cotton bags used to store our bedlinen. I began to think how we could reuse those. The idea of making a patchwork curtain out of cotton remains came to me. The curtain is made from the largest remains of our bedlinen and pillows. In this way, the material itself helped create this new design.’
Styling: Missu Schneidermann | Photo: Chris Tonnesen