The Co-Founder Of The Citizenry, Soho's Cult Favorite Home Store, Chats All Things Interiors

by Christie Grimm · March 26, 2021

    You know those home stores where you just walk in and are immediately smacked in the face with a realization that everything back in your apartment needs to go? That's The Citizenry

    It's basically impossible to stroll through their flagship store at 22 Crosby Street and not be overwhelmed by the sense of calm their carefully curated decor emits. Beautiful handwoven rugs from India, leather pillows from Portugal, wall hangings from Mexico - their new spring collection is the globally-minded refresh your home life so desperately needs.

    Feeling inspired? We caught up with The Citizenry's Co-Founder Carly Nance to chat everything from her interior design pet peeves to how many throw pillows is too many throw pillows!

    How would you describe The Citizenry's style?
    I tend to think of our style as “refined bohemian.” It’s artful, elevated, and collected. We also like to layer in natural materials and artisanal elements to add character and story to a space. 

    Where did you find your inspiration for the new spring collection?
    Our team started designing this collection at the height of the lockdown last year. During that time, we were finding a new appreciation for nature. We all were wanting to bring the serenity of the outdoors into our spaces. This inspired the earthy palette and all the natural elements in the collection. 

    It ended up feeling very organic yet still artful and curated. I love how it came together!

    Traveling to and meeting with all of your artisans is such a big piece of your mission, how has the pandemic affected that?
    Navigating the pandemic has involved a lot of creativity and innovation to ensure our artisan partners are cared for and could safely work through the year. To support them, we’ve offered health and safety resources across all 22 countries. We also ramped up payments earlier in the year, so many artisans could pre-purchase materials and set up workshops in their own homes.

    Without travel, we’ve also relied heavily on all the same technologies that have kept most businesses going. Zoom, Google Hangouts, WhatsApp, and photos have bridged the gap until it’s safe to get back on the ground again.

    What's one product you're dying to carry but haven't yet had the chance to?
    I’d love to create more statement furniture pieces. In particular, I’m dying to create a chic, perfectly crafted bed as the backdrop for so many of our textiles.

    Can you ever have too many throw pillows?
    Not if you mix them in a thoughtful way! We like to pick a color scheme and vary the scale of patterns, materials, and textures across a grouping. 

    When you want to flood a couch with pillows, go for a “v” shape with the biggest pillows on ends and lumbars in the middle.

    What's one thing you have far too many of at home?
    Coffee table books! I have stacks and stacks of art books. It’s a go-to I pick up on travels, and now I have benches where the varied stacks have become their own mini sculptures.

    What's your philosophy when it comes to choosing the right rug for a space?
    Size and durability are just as important as the design. You need a size that matches your room layout and durability to match your lifestyle. I tend to mix in tightly woven flat weaves in higher traffic areas and plush rugs in bedrooms to up the cozy factor. Rugs are a place I always invest in handwoven quality so they can withstand the test of time.

    When it comes to size, I tend to think bigger is better but there are lots of variations. The Citizenry created a handy sizing guide that we all reference when styling spaces, especially smaller apartments since those can be so tricky. 

    Interior design pet peeves?
    Personality-free spaces that just copy trends. Mix in things you love - art, pillows, objects, and books, even if not completely “on trend.” They will make the space feel more lived-in and more “you.” 

    Also, rugs that are too small for a room’s arrangement. If you find a rug you love but it’s too small, you can always layer it on top of a larger jute rug to ground the space. 

    Tips for making the most of a small space?
    Stylish storage is a must. Go for lidded baskets that are neutral and add texture without overwhelming the space. Our Mercado Basket Collection is a go-to. 

    What's an easy way to embrace spring inside?
    Layer in pops of a seasonal color that is speaking to you. A new pillow on the couch or blanket at the end of the bed will immediately freshen things up. Right now, we’re mixing in moments of sage, olive, stone blue, and camel into our own homes. 

    If you want to splurge a bit more, spring is also a great time to upgrade your bedding. Luxe, breathable linen adds texture and lightness, and it feels like heaven to sleep in! The perfect treat to start fresh and bring the feeling of spring inside your home. 

    What color palette are you currently feeling the most?
    I’m leaning into lots of warmer earth tones at the moment. I’m mixing in sand, tan, camel, and terra cotta in more ways than I have in the past. I love how rooted and soothing they feel in my space. 

    What are you most excited for next?
    Next month, we are launching three new hues of our stonewashed linen bedding. I’m really feeling the palette – it’s inspired by the south of Portugal and our time there.

    We’re all missing travel, so I hope this palette transports people a bit. We designed it to add a bit of calmness, escape, and beauty to your space.