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At home with: Nicemakers

When you're a couple in work as well as life, how do you agree on the way your home should look? If you're Dax Roll and Joyce Urbanus of Amsterdam-based design studio Nicemakers, the answer is short and sweet: just be nice. We visited the Soho House Amsterdam members in their 18th century apartment in the Jordaan area of the city, where they told us about their shared vision for creating interiors that feel loved and lived in.

Joyce Urbanus

We fell in love and during the first period of our relationship I started working for myself. Working alone is not the most inspiring thing so we were always chatting about all sorts of things and we really enjoyed doing that - it already felt like we were creating.

'We were already doing a small project together and we popped by an antique market somewhere close - the first we'd ever visited together. We saw the same items within this complete mess and had this exact moment of 'oh this is great for there' and figured out that we had the exact same eye. That's when we decided we should do this together. So then we started Nicemakers. But we did say we're going to work together, which is super nice, but our relationship comes first, so if one of us has a feeling this is not the way to go, we just ring the bell and we stop it. That was always the rule and it still is, if one of us doesn't want to do this, our relationship comes first. We are very much designers who really create something that completely matches our client and we don't want to push our own style too much, so I think when people come to our home then you can definitely see how it is when you just let us loose. That's I think the 100% expression of our aesthetic.'

Dax Roll

When we design a space we design it from the perspective of how you use the space, not just how it looks in a picture and that’s what we do for ourselves and for our clients as well. When we design a space we see the client living there.

Dax 'In this apartment we took out all the doors and replaced the two doors in the bathroom with sliding doors which are almost always open - when you're in the shower you can listen to music and look at the plants on the patio.'

Joyce 'Light is a very big feature - if you have a small space, put lights in every little corner to bring it out more. The mirrors are something we added a bit later and this detail of the mirror in the space in between the windows, you often see that in Amsterdam. Every time we do a project we add this little detail.'

Dax 'The reflection makes the space look bigger and at night it's nice because you see the lights and the candles. We love the smoky finish.'