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January 11, 2023
When we first connected with Martina Casonato, we instantly felt an affinity with her love for understated design, raw, earthy tones and considered, textural details. As a graphic designer, Martina blended her intuitive approach to aesthetics with her Italian heritage to thoughtfully reimagine the London home that she shares with her partner, Joe.
What emerged was a beautiful, sanctuary-like home with a kitchen truly at its heart. The space effortlessly nurtures Martina's passion for food - where delicious, comforting dishes are artfully created and captured in her online presence, The Venetian Pantry. We spoke to Martina about her daily rituals and how stationery fits into her life.
What drew you to a neutral aesthetic when creating your home?
Both me and my partner Joe wanted our home to feel like a calm oasis in the middle of the hustle and bustle that is a city like London, somewhere to relax and unwind. As graphic designers, we are all too aware that colours go in and out of trends, but there is a timeless quality about neutrals. As a character, I am also quite risk-adverse, so having a neutral frame, or blank canvas if you like, allows me to introduce pops of colours in things like soft furnishing and art, in a way that feels more manageable.
What is your go-to ritual to promote a sense of balance and well-being?
I have never been much of a routine type of person, but in the last couple of months I seem to have found one that really works for me. I have started to set the alarm a little earlier, and I love to start the day in my tiny garden room: I light a candle or an incense and do some pilates. That half an hour in the morning by myself is my personal time, and it really does ground me for the day, as cliché as that sounds!
How does stationery fit into your daily lifE?
After my pilates class and before showering, I go back inside, sit at my dining table and journal while I have breakfast. I also write a to-do list for that day, which has really worked wonders for me! As someone who can get easily distracted (especially since I am working from home), I find creating lists helps me to focus on the tasks at hand and prioritise what I need to do. There is something so satisfying about crossing out a completed task. It's a simple psychological mechanism really, but that small reward is enough to keep me moving through the list.
What is it about paper stationery that captures your interest?
Aside from my professional fascination (I still haven't met a graphic designer who doesn't love a good bit of stationery!), I have noticed that physically writing down things is much more effective on me than typing on my phone. I'm not sure exactly why that is, perhaps it goes back again to that satisfying gesture of crossing things out with the stroke of a pen! I also love the idea of keeping my agendas as physical objects to look back to in the future, as mini time-capsules of my daily life. It's just not the same with apps, is it?
When and how do you find yourself in a state of flow?
That's a very interesting question! As I said before, my brain works in a sort of scattered way and I can be very easily distracted. But when I am really enjoying a task (or if I have a pending deadline, that works too!), then I enter "the zone" and I am laser focused – whether I am setting typography, shooting with my camera or post-producing photos. Joe can always tell when I am in the zone, as he says I have a very serious and slightly comical expression on my face!
Find Martina on Instagram: @thevenetianpantry
All photos: Martina Casonato, The Venetian Pantry