Every once in awhile I come across a home where the interior design is so fresh and inspired that it makes me take a second look. Such was the case when I came across the informal elegance of Marie-Anne Oudejans's home in this month's AD Magazine, formerly known as Architectural Digest. Oudejans was the fashion designer for the the wildly successful Tocca clothing line of the mid-90s, which I wore pretty much exclusively during that time because I just loved the fit, fabrics and exuberant patterns.
I was wondering what had happened to Oudejans and it turns out she's been living in Jaipur, India for the past six years and gone on to become an interior designer, not a huge stretch as the two fields have much in common. Oudejans's fashion background certainly informs her interior design sensibility, exhibiting whimsical flourishes of color, fabric and trim combinations, as she did with the clothing she designed.
Oudejans's well-appointed one-bedroom apartment is located on the ground floor of the opulent Hotel Narain Niwas Palace and just beyond her front door is the pool and an exotic garden inhabited by monkeys, peacocks and parrots. Oudejans says she finds her surroundings "magical" and "as you imagine India would be."
What's particularly resonating for me in these rooms are the clean classical lines of Indian/colonial style furnishings, traditional artwork, liberal use of pairs for balance, and an unswerving commitment to a red and blue palette. The wrought iron and mahogany finishes ground each room and are balanced by touches of white, creating a sophisticated yet inviting environment.