Images by Sophie Brockwell
It takes a certain will and self-possession to master minimalism, particularly when you work in the axis of the Australian fashion industry as Stephanie Huxley does. And yet she navigates fashion seasons effortlessly, maintaining an aesthetic that is a lesson in measured restraint and extending it to every element of her life. From her design work and art direction for JONES Magazine and Sidenote, to her home décor choices and personal wardrobe.
I am the creative director at Jones Magazine, which means I spend most of my day (and night) concepting and executing campaign and editorial shoots for the magazine and our client David Jones, as well as designing pages, chatting with our team about various ideas, and always, always looking for fonts. Outside of this I work on the digital editorial platform SIDE-NOTE as art director - this mainly involves art directing layout of stories for the website and discussing ideas for content with founders Karla Clarke and Emma Kalfus who are both brilliant and endlessly inspiring. I usually have a freelance project or two on the go, typically branding design for friends and clients. And I work with my husband Richard on the interiors and creative direction of his residential projects.
I like to ask a lot of questions and do a lot of research before starting a design or setting a direction. I often find the first spark of an idea was the right one - I think I tend to design instinctively more than anything, going with what feels right. But research is so important to inform what that idea is - having an understanding of what has gone before, what you need to stand out from, and what you want to say is imperative.
When I started in the industry there was no Instagram or Pinterest, I would go to the library or a bookstore to find inspiration, and I try to retain some element of this now. It's so easy to get lost in the sea of similar images that we have at our fingertips.
Where you look for inspiration?
Typically art, architecture, design books, magazines, too much Instagram scrolling...
Sum up your aesthetic?
Tonal and tending toward the minimal, but I love an artful twist and an artisanal element.
How it extends to your interiors?
I like pale tones and varying textures and appreciate a sense of refinement. I love an antique as much as I love a mid-century chair as much as I love a clean lined 90s aesthetic... U struggle to streamline when it comes to my own space!
Your three favourite interior designers - go.
Axel Vervoordt - for his masterful use of antiques, purity of vision and inimitable celebration of patina.
Rose Uniacke - for her elegant restrain and classic sensibility.
Pierre Yonvanovitch - for his playful compositions and artful eye.
Your daily rituals -
Right now, life looks a little different and I have been taking a lot of pleasure in new daily rituals. Coffee in bed with my husband every morning, I try to make it to a pilates or yoga class at One Hot Yoga at the end of the day, and always a glass of wine in the evening while making dinner and chatting through whatever projects we are working on.
Three books/films everyone should read/watch?
Every film by Luca Guadagnino is the most beautiful and perfect work of art. I find them endlessly inspiring.
Ways of Seeing by John Berger.
Tender is the Night by F Scott Fitzgerald.
The women that inspire you -
My grandmothers, both eternally kind and family focussed, as well as having a great sense of humour and sense of enjoyment in life.