From the atmospheres crafted behind closed doors to the rituals practiced within, the home series invites members of our community to reflect on the meaning of home, in their own words. We hope this series offers our readers a sense of inspiration and groundedness as we bundle up during this wintertime season.
In our next edition of this series, we have invited Alfred Bramsen to dive into the topic. Born in Copenhagen, Alfred works with illustration and interiors, drawing on inspiration from wagashi confectionery, ceramics and images and objects collected on his travels in Japan.
– How do you describe the work you do?
- a mixed bag of loads of different things! At the moment illustrating is what I’m focusing most on. And have a lot of illustration projects this year which I am over the moon about. But I also love interiors and love working on homeware projects so I flounce a bit back and forth between the two as I see fit.
– Tell us about a cherished item of clothing you’ve kept and repaired over the years. Where did it come from? How has it lasted this long? What do you enjoy about wearing and owning this particular garment? - a while back, my friend in New York got this beautiful red and white woven vest, and I had always admired it. I happened to be in New York the day before he moved to Japan and to my surprise he gave me the vest as a gift. It’s a garment I always cherish, and I have worn at least once a week for years.
– How do you decide what kinds of objects and fabrics you live with? What draws you to particular items over others? - it’s very instinctual! I see something and sometimes it just clicks, and I get a voice in my head that’s like “This is me, I need this”.
– Can you describe an item in your home which makes you feel particularly cosy or comfortable? - our bed, but mostly just because I love lying in bed all day, and I would if I could!
– What kinds of heirlooms do you have in your life? Please describe one or two precious items that have remained in your family for generations. - a very large quilt that my grandmother gave to my mother and my mother recently passed down to me. When my other grandmother passed away I inherited a beautiful vintage wedding kimono that I cherish deeply, her and I had a very strong bond as she was as obsessed with collecting as I am.
– How do you care for your most loved items of clothing? - I wear them! And lots. When there’s something I love I make sure to get the most use out of it. fabrics and textiles when good quality can last you forever, but I’d rather wear often than keep them pristine.
– Would you say you have a uniform? Are there particular pieces of clothing you tend to wear constantly, and which you keep in your wardrobe for years on end? - I always wear either a black dress or a black pleated skirt, and some sort of knitwear, most of the time. If I am not in that it’s probably one of those days I wake up and need to have lots of colour on, and I’ll probably wear that vest I mentioned earlier.
– What kinds of considerations do you factor in when you’re choosing a special piece of clothing or homeware to invest in? - I always think if it fits in with everything else I own. Most of the time I shop for variations of things I already have. I love to be able to wear many varieties of the same look! I also rarely ever shop, I like to buy investment pieces that I will wear again and again so I shop occasionally, but when I do, I definitely go in!
– Tell us about a time in which you felt close to nature. - any time I am in Japan. Any place of nature feels so preserved and well taken care of and loved, so the presence of that forest or that beach really make you feel that beauty of nature and I hope we can learn to take better care of it.
– Can you describe a memory of feeling soothed and warmed in cold weather? - when I was a kid and would wear a big furry hooded coat, and when the hood was up I would pretend that inside of the hood was a little house with a fireplace and I’d imagine that and feel a bit warmer when I was walking home from school through the snow.
– What do you enjoy about autumn and winter? Are there particular rituals you adopt during the colder months? - I love autumn, especially in London, it feels like the season that london fits really well with. Going for a crisp walk through town and having dinner at an old school classic restaurant in autumn somehow feels very right.
– Where do you turn to find inspiration? - everywhere! When I am inspired to be inspired I feel like I can find it anywhere, whether it’s a painting of a pile of trash.
Thank you to Alfred Bramsen for opening up his home to us. The yellow blanket featured in this piece is our Felt Ombre Throw.