Simone Haag is one of those people who can create an effortlessly cool space that looks like it took no time at all, but if you try it yourself it seems impossible! She is someone who's work I personally greatly admire, so I was over the moon when she agreed to be featured on my blog! After reading her interview and viewing her work, you will no doubt feel the same.
Simone is now a well known Interior Stylist, but that hasn't always been her profession. After many years travelling and working various jobs, she began working at Hecker Guthrie in the administration team. From there she worked her way up through the ranks and the rest is history! She now has her own freelance business.
Simone's own home and her work have been featured multiple times in Real Living, Design Files, Belle Bazaar, Vogue Living, Urbis, as well as House and Garden. She has done amazing projects for a range of private clients as well as commercial including; Country Road, Nathan + Jac, Woods Bagot, Herman Miller and Fred.
As for Simone's ethos?
"MY JOB IS LIKE THAT OF A JOURNALIST – TO INVESTIGATE YOUR PERSONAL STORY. IT’S ONLY WITH THIS INFORMATION THAT I CAN DESIGN AN IMMERSIVE NARRATIVE, ONE IN WHICH YOU WILL WANT TO LIVE, TO CELEBRATE AND RELAX – ONE THAT REFLECTS YOU AND YOUR UNIQUE STORY."
Check out her wesbite www.simonehaag.com.au
When did you know you wanted to become a stylist?
My back ground is quite an interesting one! I studied Business at University and travelled for some seven years. My jobs over that time defy belief - from Heli boarding in Canada, to working on a boat for surfing company Quiksilver for a few years, possessing of private jets and events for chic design hotel the Sanderson in London arranging parties for movie stars and musicians. Those jobs were punctuated with much travel through Europe, America, Asia and Japan. After so much time away, I really wanted a job in a creative field, I approached coveted design studio Hecker Guthrie and landed a job in their admin team. Some eight years later I had navigated my role to such that I headed up furnishing and styling their projects and working with the media to publish said projects. So I can’t say that I actually ever planned to get into styling - rather fell into it! After many wonderful projects and clients, I parted ways with Hecker Guthrie to have my two babies - and have since launched a freelance business.
How long have you been in the industry and what was your first job?
I have been in the industry for close to 10 years now. I feel so privileged to have had my ‘on the job apprenticeship’ through such an amazing studioand I am so amazed that I have been able to maintain such amazing projects in my freelance career. It is so wonderful that stylists in their own right can study and take this path- I just wish I had the foresight to see this as a career path before stumbling into it!
What was the biggest surprise/struggle you encountered starting out in the industry?
Admittedly I haven’t found any struggles as such - But time and experience I have since navigated my business in another direction and that is “furniture art and object” for private residential clients. This has been an organic development as I have personally found I find far more pleasure in helping private clients curate their furniture collections for the long term - rather then to ‘schlep’ things in and out for the camera. I still get to style shoots - but they are the homes of my clients’ and I find it satisfying capturing what may have been 6 months of work rather then 6 hours.
Has your career evolved how you expected?
Hell no! If you had of asked me 5 years ago if I would have a full book of amazing clients seeking my help to purchase incredible pieces of furniture, whilst mothering two gorgeous girls with close to 25K insta followers and some lovely press - I wouldn’t have believed you! Next steps include taking up residency in a great warehouse space in Colligwood and travel to more International furniture fairs and be taken on an overseas buying trip!!
What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about being a stylist?
Ha ha - the glamour? There is a hell of a lot of planning, schlepping, lifting, moving and worrying. I sometimes envy the photographer whocan come with an assistant and their equipment and make it work (of course with their own struggles of weather etc) - where as we have to plan, beg, borrow, steal and plan so much more in advance.
And whats the most enjoyable part of your job?
Seeing the magic happen!
What piece of advice would you give to someone wanting to get into the industry?
Build up contacts with suppliers -for without them - you have nothing.
Try and find “the shot” in everyday life
Use Instagram as an amazing platform for learning and contact building
*All imagery belongs to Simone Haag, photography by Mark Roper and Derek Swalwell*