You guys know how much I love my homewares. I get just as giddy about a great throw or a beautifully designed couch as I do about an amazing pair of shoes. Really, when you think about it, the way we decorate our homes is an extension of our fashion sense and the two are definitely linked. I love nothing more than finding new homewares brands that are making their mark on the interior design loving community and Ardour Wolf by Melbourne gal Bianca Plasencia is turning me into the heart eyed emoji.
In the interest of complete transparency, I actually went to highschool with Bianca (we seem to be a strangely entrepreneurial year level!). But weirdly enough I discovered her brand before I realised that I actually knew the girl behind it. The company is only a few years old and have just launched their own in-house brand as well (Aves of Ardour) so we wouldn’t be surprised to see world domination next on their to-do list. Ahead Bianca talks us through the highs and lows in the first two years of her business.
- What made you want to start Ardour Wolf?
I started Ardour Wolf Design in May 2014, after I had an opportunity to fully furnish and interior style a sub-penthouse in St Kilda, Victoria. I realised upon completion that there was a much-needed service for a personal shopper but specifically for interior products. Ardour Wolf originally launched as a personal shopping service for home décor and eventually evolved into an online retail boutique.
- Have you always been interested in homewares?
I remember as a teen I was always passionate about interior styling and home décor, I would be forever reading magazines and browsing online content on what was trending.
- What sets Ardour Wolf apart?
I’m a big believer in mixing the world of fashion and art into any home. With the Aves Of Ardour Collection we used abstract art and design as inspiration behind the colour and pattern work. We blended both on-trend colour palettes and intrinsic patterns into our line, we wanted to deliver bold art and fashion into our pieces, changing the notion that art always hang off a wall. I believe that is what will set Ardour Wolf apart as an interior label, delivering an art piece that can now be displayed across any bed or sofa.
- You recently launched your own label, what was the inspiration for that?
I was inspired to create the Aves Of Ardour Collection by nature. I drew inspiration from rare and exotic aviary wildlife, the geometric pattern showcases a scattered effect and the intrinsic separation between the pattern work displays them moving away from each other like a flight of birds. The chosen colour palettes were carefully selected to create an abstract art piece, blending art, nature and design together.
- What was one of the biggest challenges you have faced since starting your company?
The biggest challenge since starting was finding the right manufacturers to bring my designs to life. I never wanted to compromise on the aesthetics of the design and its quality, so finding the right artisans that were just as passionate as myself and who could deliver my vision on a mass scale was the biggest challenge.
- Where do you see the brand going in the next 5 years?
In the next 5 years I would love to expand our own range further. I would like to see Ardour Wolf Design grow on the Aves Of Ardour Collection and create several collections under the umbrella of throws. Within 5 years I would hope the brand develops our own set of luxury towels and floor rugs.
- If you could get your products into the hands of one celebrity who would it be and why?
It would definitely be Rebecca Judd. Her work ethic, her fashion and her unbelievably beautiful family home are such an inspiration to Ardour Wolf. I have always been a lover of Rebecca’s incredible style and how she can constantly push the boundaries by introducing new trends into the fashion and interior design industry. The way she can blend dramatic textures and colours into her rooms are just so divine, she isn’t afraid to take things to new levels and she can do it time and time again.
- What’s one piece of advice you’d give to someone who wants to follow in your footsteps?
Don’t be afraid to ask questions! It is one way you can learn, by doing so it will open up several doors so you can receive priceless guidance. The more knowledge you can acquire from those that can help you the better chance you will have at succeeding. Seek professional advice from those that have the experience, it’s truly invaluable.
- What has been the biggest lesson you’ve learnt so far?
I have learnt that nothing is guaranteed but with the right advice and some calculated risks I was able to gain traction and further develop the brand and myself. Unwavering belief in yourself is needed and in times of doubt you must continue to work hard in order to push yourself through the challenging times.
- If you could go back in time and give yourself one piece of advice (as a teen or a young entrepreneur) what would it be?
If I could give my younger self one piece of advice it would be to always trust your instincts. There is some form of energy that will constantly guide you down the right path, my advice would be to listen to it. We often doubt ourselves and start to think whether we are capable of achieving certain goals, shut those thoughts down. Start on that project you have set for yourself, make a move towards your goal — even if it is minimal, just start, the sooner you do the quicker you will move towards accomplishing it. You will be able to handle anything that comes your way; the momentum will push you through. Take it one step at a time … develop the power to believe in yourself and you will find that through hard work, perseverance and by following your instincts you can achieve your aspirations.