Balancing Act: Helene Aumont

Balancing Act: Helene Aumont

“For me a collection has to be eclectic,” says Paris-born, Santa Ynez-based designer Hélène Aumont, who, in addition to interiors, designs a line of artisanal furniture, lighting, passementerie, and cowhide rugs. “I work with Lucite, fabric, wood, glass, bronze—I experience what seems to be a good pair and then try to let a design evolve.” Balancing the rigors of French style with “California’s inherent joie de vivre,” her classic pieces tap into inspirations ranging from church floors to Italian cobblestones. Even her time spent as a fit model for Givenchy plays an informative role, as there she learned that “what looks great on paper isn’t always viable!” Her progression to interiors began in 1995 and to designing furnishings a few years later when, unable to find a perfect console for a project, she enlisted a sculptor friend to craft her own design in bronze. “From then it never stopped,” says Aumont, who has several new pieces on the horizon, including dressers, credenzas and passementerie-wrapped hardware. “That’s why I adore my job,” she notes. “It’s something different everyday.”

LX: I became interested in design when..

HA: I grew up in Paris and from a very early age I was exposed to museums and lived around beautiful furniture, objects and architecture.

LX: Design icons:

HA: Andrée Putman, Zaha Hadid, Anish Kapoor and Andy Goldsworthy.

LX: Trends you're excited by:

HA: I love taupe with prune accents, zebrino marble and transparency; it’s the new black for me.

LX: Words of wisdom:

HA: Be curious and receptive.

LX: I'm reading...

HA: The Glass Castle, by Jeannette Walls, The Queen’s Lover, by Francine du Plessix Gray, and Daring Greatly, by Brene Brown.

LX: Favorite clothing brand:

HA: I love it all, from Hermès to Vans, as long as its of good quality and classic design.

LX: Most people don't know...

HA: I can drive and maneuver a large skip loader tractor, and I love to get my hands dirty in the garden.;



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