friend of bassike, danielle mcewan of tigmi trading, has fast become a mainstay in the australian interiors space thanks to her expert eye for curating timeless textiles, furniture and art from morocco and beyond that balance both aesthetics and functionality. we spoke to her at her bayshore drive studio about her approach to interior styling and her commitment to sustainable sourcing.
follow danielle’s work at tigmi trading on instagram at @tigmitrading.
what were your motivations for starting tigmi trading?
our very first trip to morocco in 2004 was the catalyst. we fell in love with the artisanship and in particular the traditional berber rugs. it took quite a few more years to realise and act upon the idea, but it was certainly cultivated in morocco. we knew we wanted to share these unique pieces of functional art to the rest of the world, in a way that celebrated the artisans.
what is the key philosophy behind the brand?
our philosophy is rooted in the idea that good design is timeless and adds both beauty and character to our lives. we love the idea of pieces being handed down, and with them adding an intangible layer of story to a space.
a key aspect of the company ethos is your commitment to sustainable sourcing and traditional methods of production. why is this important to you?
i think there is now a collective understanding that the current level of consumption is unsustainable for the future of the planet.
in a world inundated with disposable goods, we believe that there is a need to focus less on the mass-produced model and more on slow, conscious production. this gives us an opportunity to utilise time-honoured traditions that have been passed down for generations, so that these skills remain intact for future generations and provide job and income opportunities for their communities.
" we firmly believe that good design is made to last and therefore support the revival of classic design pieces — giving them new life and simply embracing the imperfections and time worn qualities which are markers of their history and story. "
what is your approach to curating homewares and furniture?
everything i curate, i love. there is no science to it – it’s an innate feeling and i only ever invite pieces i have a connection with into the showroom. in saying that, i am drawn to texture, colour and form. i love sculptural shapes and the idea that functional objects can be beautiful, sculptural and able to stand on their own.
what are your top tips for styling a space?
the best spaces are the ones that are welcoming and authentic as well as interesting. include pieces that have meaning for you, that you have collected on your travels and invest in the things you love and spend a lot of time on like sofas, chairs and rugs. great design is timeless.
how does the tigmi trading ethos and your eye for interior styling inform your personal style?
i am drawn to texture, colour and form. i tend to keep my style pretty pared-back and casual (and a little ‘byron’ at times!) but really, i like to invest in wardrobe pieces the way that i do furniture; staple pieces that are timeless and create a solid wardrobe foundation. from there, i like to play around with layering in some more fun pieces
" i like to invest in wardrobe pieces the way that i do furniture; staple pieces that are timeless and create a solid wardrobe foundation. from there, i like to play around with layering in some more fun pieces.
how have the events of the past year changed your perspective, both on a personal level and on the direction of tigmi trading?
last year really reinforced for me the notion of community, of slowing down and really prioritising what was important – on a macro level, the planet and our resources; and on a micro level, family, friends, health and wellbeing.
you often cite travel as one of your key creative influences. how did physical barriers to travel in the last year change your creative vision and process?
we were lucky enough to be ‘stuck’ in one of the most beautiful parts of the world so to be honest, it wasn’t difficult to stay put. it has also forced us to travel more locally, so i have drawn inspiration and vision from my surroundings and some of the incredible places and artisans we have right on our doorstep.
what is next on the horizon for tigmi trading?
we have our first rug collection launching this year, along with some other exciting collaborations and projects that I'm looking forward to getting out there!