Every mouth, finger, eye or ring comes from a different folder. Antonia likes rings. They have to be somewhat big though.
From her kitchen in Amsterdam, Antonia creates an elegant fantasy world. Harper’s Bazaar or WOTH, it doesn’t matter to her.
Collagist Antonia Timmermans
Every floor of the house has only one function. The kitchen is downstairs, the living room is on the first floor, the second contains the bed- and bathroom and the attic is the ‘playroom’.
Collagist Antonia Timmermans and her husband Menko have a house on a canal close to Theater Carré in Amsterdam. They bought it nine years ago. After years of living ‘outside’ – Broek and Waterland, Brabant and even France – they wanted to return to the city. A normal person in a new house starts in the kitchen, or the living room. But Antonia is anything but, so the very first thing she did was paint the panelled ceiling in the attic in many different colours.
‘It was an enormous amount of work, it was crazy, but I had so much fun doing it. I’d bought various cans of paint in colours I liked. Only after finishing one panel would I decide what colour the next was going to be. That might sound like I was just doing whatever, but it was certainly thought out. Both sides had to have minute differences, but the colours had to come back. It had to have some sort of logic to it.’ She laughs. ‘It’s hard to explain what kind of logic. My logic.’
The yellow cabinet is a repainted old archive cabinet from a hospital. The bespoke kitchen was made by Dosis in Waalwijk.
Her husband Menko – ‘a musician at heart, manager of a health care facility during the day’ – now makes music there in the evening. At first it was her studio, now she works at the kitchen table. ‘I was just sitting in that little room all day, I didn’t see anyone. At some point I thought: I’m just going to go downstairs and sit in the kitchen. And now I’m having fun cutting and pasting here. Sometimes I go sit on the bench in front of the house and the neighbour comes over. And then we drink coffee together. Much more fun.’
‘‘What I knew for sure was that I wanted a black-and-white tiled floor and parquet. When I think of timeless design, that’s where my mind goes.’
The lamp is by Ilse Crawford for Ikea. The colour on the wall is the exact same as the colour of the shutters of their previous house in Brabant. The couch’s fabric had to be romantic, she found it in a fabric shop next to the Sarphati Park.
Antonia – known to her friends and acquaintances as Tonny – makes beautiful collages for magazines like Harper’s Bazaar, WOTH and shops like Claudia Sträter. Her tools: a pair of scissors, a sharp knife and glue. ‘Delightful.’ The computer is only used to scan. She cuts various things from magazines: eyes, mouths, arms, jewels, clothing, and mixes them with new fashion and interior items. Trend pages and works of art at the same time. Sometimes she completely cuts loose with free work, which she exhibits.
There’s only one piece to be found in her home, ‘Aurelie’, the framed cut out figure that’s on her panelled table. The upper body and head are formed by a watch. Antonia’s style is humorous, cheerful and elegant, a bit like her house, in fact. She’s heard it before. ‘I have a friend who often tells me: your house is like a collage, and so are you.’
The pink velvet couch is from Wehkamp. The pink back wall is in Hellebore by Little Green. The lamp is made of paper and was designed by Dutch designer Paula Arntzen. Her friend, illustrator Piet Paris made his own version of a pain-ting by Cees van Dongen for her. On the couch is a pillow in yellow gradient by Scholten & Baijings for Thomas Eyck. Sitting on the couch, you have a view of the Amstel River.
Yellow and Pink
She’s a master at mixing and matching, at creating surprising, unconventional combinations. Take yellow and pink. Painter Willem de Kooning made his most beautiful paintings with them, but it’s not common for interiors, she’s noticed. ‘People don’t always understand. Can you really do this, they’ll ask. But it’s actually quite possible, they’re both warm colours. They just clash a little and that’s what I like about it.’
The work of art ‘Aurelie’, self-made, with next to it a portrait that friend and designer Machteld Schouten did of her.
The cabinet is of Danish design, the designer unclear, she bought it at Fabriek.nl/Morentz. The arsenic green chair comes from Loods 5. The yellow stool from Pol’s Potten. ‘I can’t live without plants.’ The plant in the room is a Schefflera. ‘It’s incredibly glossy.’
Her china cabinet contains a mix of tableware, because just one set is too boring. Family tableware and silverware, IIttala, Ikea, French bric-a-brac, she uses it all together. Expensive goes well with cheap. A regular couch from Wehkamp stands on top of the exclusive, made-to-fit rug by Parade. But it works so well that the neighbours on the left and right have since bought the same one.
Even her clothing combinations are always surprising. Today she’s wearing a Scottish checked robe that normally goes with tights and a pair of flat shoes, but instead she chose to wear pants with a wild design and heeled Guccis, the same as in the picture. She loves shoes. At one point, she owned controversial fashion and shoe store Antonia, located on the Negen Straatjes in Amsterdam. Sometimes, when she has a new pair of beautiful shoes, she puts them in the room as an accessory. For that same reason, there’s a small, pretty golden purse on the kitchen couch. ‘They belong there. If I like things I leave them out and about. I just love to look at them.’
A mood board. The swan is by French illustrator René Gruau. Bottom left are their Jack Russels, who’ve passed on. Antonia working in her regular spot at the kitchen table. The attic with colourful panelled ceiling. ‘Here’s Menko sitting in his music bubble at night.’