Answers with interior designer Alfredo Paredes – Robb Report
Alfredo Paredes has spent over 30 years immersed in the world of Ralph Lauren, where, as Creative Director, he has designed stores around the world and designed the famous Polo Bar in New York City. The interior designer founded his eponymous studio at the end of 2019. Drawing inspiration from the minimalist work of Axel Vervoordt and the classic elegance of places such as the Chateau Marmont in Los Angeles, Paredes creates bright spaces resting on chairs and tables in natural materials. like walnut and oak. His new furniture collection with maker EJ Victor, which includes 33 pieces ranging from sofas to wardrobes, brings these sensibilities to an even wider audience. He designed his home in New York’s East Village to resemble an elevated 19th-century artist’s attic. “It’s sort of timeless in its design. You don’t really know when it happened, which I like, ”he says. “I don’t particularly like when I walk into a place and I’m like, ‘Oh, that was in 1990.’ ”
What apps do you use the most?
Instagram, of course. I have one for my work and one for my staff. I listen to KCRW on the app. It’s a Los Angeles resort that is my favorite in the world.
What are you doing that is still analog?
I always write handwritten thank-you notes, which is very complicated because my hand can’t even hold a pen anymore. But I do it anyway. I think it’s really personal.
Do you have a uniform for certain occasions?
To dress myself up, my favorite is a gray Ralph Lauren Purple Label flannel suit. I have one for the winter and one for the summer. And the rest of the time it’s Double RL jeans, Chucks and white T-shirts.
Is there anything you regret not purchasing?
There’s a picture of Madonna, by Herb Ritts in the 80s, of her with Minnie Mouse ears. It was $ 1,200 then; it’s, like, you can’t buy it now.
What’s the most recent thing you added to your collection?
I recently added a pool with new landscaping to my home east of Shelter Island.
What do you crave the most at the end of the day?
To return home to my family. I used to go out, eat dinner and drink… I don’t do that anymore.
Where do you find calm?
The exterior. I feel like I live in Manhattan, getting outside and outside is a great cleanser for the palate. Somewhere, no matter where. Some people want to travel and go to big cities, like “Allons à Paris”. I have been to Paris a thousand times. I wanna go to Yosemite or the woods of California — Big Sur, the beach, something like that. Open spaces.
What song do you currently have in mind?
I don’t have a song per se. I always listen to Chet Baker.
What do you collect?
I am a great collector of photographs. I have a lot of photography, a lot of pottery. I collect a lot of Hugo Guinness.
Do you wear a watch and how many do you have?
I have so many that I couldn’t even tell you how many. Because of the iPhone, I don’t even wear them. Ralph has given me a lot over the years. I have the IWC Pilot Watch, the Rolex Submariner, and the Hermès Cape Cod.
What is your most precious possession?
For my 40th birthday, I received a Cartier Tank Américaine from my partner. I love it; it is my favorite. It’s engraved for me.
How would you describe your look?
I tend to gravitate towards the war correspondent slash painter slash surfer. That’s what my partner said. I don’t really know what he meant by that. But I love the way Picasso dresses, I love the way Hemingway dresses, and I love surfer clothes.
What’s always in your carry-on baggage?
My Retrosuperfuture glasses and sunglasses. I have many. I bought, like, 20 of the same pair because there is only one frame that I like. They’re all in every bag, every desk.
Who is your reseller and what does he get for you?
There is a place I love in England called Dean Antiques. I buy a lot from my photographer friend Richard Phibbs, and there is a photography dealer in the West Village called Robin Rice. I used to shop a lot from Paul Rubenstein. Personally, I buy a lot of things for my house on Shelter Island at a place called Beall & Bell on North Fork.
Who is your guru?
Well, obviously my relationship with Ralph Lauren didn’t hurt. He was my guru and still is in many ways, from a creative standpoint.
What’s your exercise routine?
I train three days a week in a private gym with a trainer and play tennis on weekends in East Hampton, usually two days a week. I play with a pro at Ross School Tennis Academy.
If you could learn a new skill, what would it be?
In my 30s I started surfing, then I gave up in my 40s, and now I would like to discover it again. It wasn’t that I wasn’t good at it; it was just hard to reach. Living on Long Island, if there is good surfing all the pros in the world show up and you are just thrown to the curb.
Drive or be driven?
Drive. For sure. I have a new Range Rover, I have a Mercedes GLK wagon, and I have a 1970 Jeepster Commando. Most of the time they are on Shelter Island.
How much do you trust your gut?
One hundred percent. That’s all. I only trust my instincts.
What is worth paying for?
What are your usual tables in London, LA and New York?
When I go to London, I love J Sheekey. And I love Gjelina in Venice. I miss it and I still love going. And of course, in New York, the Polo Bar!
If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you be?
My favorite place is Saline Beach in St. Barts. It is the most beautiful beach in the world.
Bowie or Dylan?