The Style Files: Kapito Muller

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I am so excited to share today’s installment of The Style Files with you. Alyssa Kapito and Vivian Muller are my talented friends who helm the design firm, Kapito Muller in New York. Alyssa and Vivian met while working with Bunny Williams at the beginning of their design career. In the Fall of 2012, they decided to go out on their own and formed a partnership in their eponymous design firm. In the years since, Kapito Muller has become known for its sophisticated, modern interiors with an emphasis on elegant silhouettes, interesting textures, and clean lines. Their work has been featured in Architectural Digest, ELLE DECOR, House Beautiful, and Tradtional Home, who recently named Kapito Muller to their “New Trads” list for 2016. Alyssa and Vivian also happen to have one of my favorite Instagram accounts @kapitomullerinterior. I know that this is only the beginning for this young, talented duo and look forward to seeing many more beautiful and inspiring projects from them in the future. Enjoy!

Paloma Contreras: How would you describe your style?

Alyssa Kapito & Vivian Muller: Clean, tailored, and edited.

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PC: Has living in New York influenced your aesthetic in any way?

AK & VM: Absolutely, when you work primarily in a city, you used to designing smaller spaces. You really need to make every moment count. You kind of become masters of the vignette in a way, as it forces you to focus a lot more on the details.

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PC: What does your home say about you?

AK: Our homes are the places where we really get to try new things unrestricted. I recently moved downtown and the aesthetic is totally different here than on the Upper East Side, which is where I used to live. So, I’m trying something totally new and a lot more eclectic and modern than I’ve ever done before. Crossing my fingers that it all comes together, but that’s the fun of it all! You don’t grow unless you try new things.

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PC: Where do you turn for inspiration?

AK & VM: Travel is hugely inspiring for the both of us. Seeing a totally new city and the style that comes with it is so eye opening. Also, staying at a beautiful hotel gives you the opportunity to really live in a space with an entirely new aesthetic. We both just love that. On a recent trip to Stockholm, I got to stay at Ett Hem, which I highly recommend for design lovers. The small boutique hotel was designed by the insanely talented Ilse Crawford and it was totally unlike anything I had ever experienced. I’m pretty sure I’ll never be the same!

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{A Photo from Kapito Muller’s Trip to Stockholm, via their Great Instagram Account @kapitomullerinterior}

PC: Who are your personal style icons?

AK & VM: For interiors it’s Jean Michel Frank, Stephen Sills, Thomas O’Brien, and David Netto. For fashion, it’s Mira Duma, Lauren Santo Domingo, Lee Radziwill, and Kate Bosworth post Blue Crush days.

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PC: What is your guilty pleasure?

AK & VM: The spa at the Mandarin Oriental in NYC.

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PC: What do you love most about having a partnership in your design firm? What is the biggest challenge?

AK & VM: Starting a business on your own can be really hard and having someone to do it with is a lot more fun and a lot less stressful. I think the most important thing about having a business partner is being totally honest with each other, which we definitely are! We also have each other’s backs which is really a wonderful thing when facing the wear and tear of running a business.

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PC: Who or what has been your greatest professional influence?

AK & VM: We both worked for people who are extremely talented and ran a business the way a business should be run. We also both had, at one point or another, the exact opposite experience as well, and I think we learned just as much from the negative as we did the positive.

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PC: What is your idea of living “la dolce vita”?

AK & VM: Traveling, eating well, entertaining, and fashion

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PC: What can we look forward to next from you?

AK & VM: We have some amazing projects that we are working on right now and they are all so different from each other! We’re doing a beach house in Belfort, a ground up new-build in Los Angeles, a really luxe pied-à-terre on the Upper West Side, a gorgeous apartment in the West Village overlooking the water, and a bachelor pad in Greenwich Village to name a few. We’re so excited about each of them for different reasons.

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Go to Outfit: A dress, a waist belt, and a great heel

Style Mantra: It should look effortless.

Scent: The smell of fresh lavender

Piece of Jewelry: Hermes Silver Chaine d’Andre Necklace

Color I Never Tire Of: Ivory

Flower: Peonies

Indispensable Design Element: Good proportions are everything

Era for Design: Vivian and I are both obsessed with Bauhaus lately.

Dream Project: Anything with 14 foot ceilings or higher!

Fabric/Textile: We’re crazy for Holland and Sherry fabrics. We use them all the time.

Hostess Gift: Candles make a great gift. Right now, we’re loving Ernesto from Cire Trudon and Blue Garden from Nest.

Meal: French Fries and Mayonnaise

Drink: Aperol Spritz

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Way to Unwind after a Long Day at Work: A nice dinner with my husband and a glass of wine

3 Things We Love About New York: The food, the people, the style

Weekend Destination: Ocean House in Rhode Island

Hotel: JK Place Capri

City: Milan

Museum: The Picasso Museum in Paris and The Guggenheim in NYC

Artist: Paul Cézanne, Henri Matisse, Anish Kapoor, Chuck Close, Yves Klein, Andreas Gursky, Cy Twombly

Song that Always Puts Me in a Great Mood: “La Vie en Rose”

Actor: Alicia Vikander, Tom Hanks, Julianne Moore

Prized Possession: AK– A sculpture my mom made in college. I always loved it growing up and she gifted it to me when I got my first apartment.

Risk Worth Taking: Doing what you love as a career.

Greatest Extravagance: Vivian and I both take way too many taxis!

Go-To Color Palette: Neutrals

Rule to break: The whole “no white after Labor Day is the silliest rule”. White is chic always.

Movie Set Design: We both love “A Single Man” and “I Am Love”, which was shot at Villa Cecchi in Milan

I can never have too many… Coffee table books

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{Photography Courtesy of Kapito Muller}

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