left: The store offers a complete line of furniture and accessories center: Shoppers can find both antique and contemporary pieces right: A dream resource for those who have a taste for mid-century design but also like to mix in other styles – Photographs by Neil Landino
ELEISH VAN BREEMS OPENS A NEW RETAIL SPACE STEPS AWAY FROM THEIR STUDIO
Rhonda Eleish and Edie van Breems—the Scandinavian design duo known as Eleish van Breems (evbantiques.com)—launched their interior design firm in Woodbury over twenty years ago. After relocating their business to Westport in late 2015, they opened their eponymous design studio and showroom on Railroad Place. “Our studio was a darling toehold in Westport to see if we would be well-received, and we have been,” says van Breems. “But it’s a small space, and it was difficult for designers to shop there with clients.”
Three years later, space is no longer an issue—Eleish van Breems Home, a new retail store, has opened just steps away on Franklin Street. “Now we’re able to show the full breadth of our edit. We want people to feel welcome, comfortable and inspired.”
This next step was natural if not direct. “We were actually looking for a warehouse for our reproduction furniture line, which is handmade in Sweden and hand-painted and finished here with Farrow & Ball paint,” says van Breems. “We wanted a space close to the studio, and after mentioning it to our landlord, he walked us around the corner and said, ‘How about here?’ ” The historic building had long been vacant, but the designers saw potential beneath the carpeting from the ’70s and the dropped-down ceilings. They decided to lease the entire building and turn it into a combined retail space and warehouse.
The renovation includes chic clay walls, new rafters, Belgian floorboards and an Italian sound system. Visitors will find a blend of antiques, mid-century modern furniture, Gustavian pieces, contemporary photography, Mud Australia tableware, sheepskin-covered Fritz Hansen armchairs from Denmark, Steiff stuffed animals, a beauty bar and artisanal home goods. “We’re not just Scandinavian; there’s so much more to us,” van Breems says.