INTERVIEW // HARPER & CO
Nadalie Abraham, Creative Director
Let’s start at the very beginning. Tell us how Harper and Co came to be.
My first job after I graduated was working in fashion as a Buyers Assistant. I always enjoyed playing with the colour swatches, mood boards and predicting trends. After I got married seven years ago, I realised I could apply everything I learnt to events. Instead of designing and going to fashion production, I could bring my designs to life at amazing venues through alternative creative streams.
Which three words best describe Harper and Co as a business?
The design is a global industry. Which other designers, artists or creative people continue to inspire you?
Musicians. Music is my number one inspiration. Whenever I am feeling uninspired or stressed, I turn up the tunes and I’m good to go. I’ve always been a big fan of hip hop so lately my go to playlist is a mix of old school artists like Biggie and Jay Z, mixed with Post Malone and Khalid. However, sometimes I randomly mix in Queen or my favourite K-pop song. I just love how music is such a universal language.
Another great source of inspiration comes from reading. I also love it; and recently discovered an amazing author by the name of Bianca Sparacino. I can’t get enough of her. Her words are magical!
What are your favourite trends of the moment? What can’t you get enough of right now?
I don’t know if it’s a trend but I love ASMR. I have this app where you can mix sounds of rain, city noises and storms and whenever I turn it on I have the best nights sleep. It has an amazing calming effect. I highly recommend it to people to try. I am currently traveling in Seoul, South Korea and obsessing over their café culture. Every café is unique in, not only, their menu offerings but also their interiors. They are so beautifully designed and curated. My favourites are Stylenanda Pink Pool Cafe, Café Dior by Pierre Herme, Café Onion and Zapangi.
What colour palettes are you enjoying working with?
Currently I am designing for the next wedding season and I love experimenting with different shades of nudes – from blush tones to earthy sand hues!
Tell us a little more about some other memorable projects you’ve worked on:
Most memorable would have to be my first marquee wedding at Lavandula Swiss Farm! I had to design an entire reception from scratch and seeing my design come to life was the best feeling!
All the marquee builds I have worked on have been my favourite projects as you get to work with a blank canvas! It’s the nicest feeling to have your clients trust you throughout the whole process. I recently did a wedding in Portsea on a private property where we connected the marquee to the pool deck. It’s one thing when you are designing it and it’s another when you see it come to life. I am very fortunate to work with such amazing vendors and the best clients.
As business that has established a following over past few years, what advice can you provide to other creatives business’ building their portfolio within events?
Be true to your design and aesthetics. People will identify your signature style and come to you for that.
If possibilities were endless. What would be your dream creative project?
I am obsessed with cherry blossoms! I was lucky to have traveled to Japan when they were in full bloom. I would love to design a day time outdoor wedding at Shinjuku Gyeon in Tokyo when the cherry blossoms are starting to fall… it’s one of the prettiest sights… it looks like pink snow! So dreamy!
In an industry that is constantly on the move. How do you do to get away from it all to rest and recharge?
I do love to travel once the wedding season is over, just so I can switch off and then come back ready to kick off the new season. I have been to so many amazing places but my favourite destinations have been South Korea and Japan… I just love that everything is open 24/7. Every night is a new adventure. On any night you could find yourself making friends drinking soju and then belting out a tune at a karaoke bar and before you know it you are watching the sun come up while you are eating Korean ramyeon!
What’s your favourite Melbourne hang out and why?
I love karaoke! I usually hit up Chin Chin for dinner and drinks and then belt out a tune with friends after.
Which Dann Event Hire piece is your favourite?
The Lucienne blush chair… I just love the velvet finish and the nude pink hue. Some of my favourite weddings have featured this chair!
If you were a piece of furniture which would you be? Why?
A bookshelf. I feel bookshelves are always filled with love. Usually they hold your favourite books and display photos of your loved one and happy memories.