For months we followed Amy Menton and her husband Stephen on Instagram, knowing little more than the fact that we shared their love for a neutral, Scandi-inspired interior. When Amy launched her blog in July 2018 we were afforded the chance to get to know her a little better - her interior inspirations, her favourite brands, products and places. It wasn't enough though - we needed to know more. So, we decided to reach out!
We caught up with Amy as part of our Utility Follows series to chat about her route into blogging, what's on her wish list and how a Chicago based couple came to be so obviously inspired by the Scandinavian way of life.
Read the full interview below.
We’ve been following yourself and Stephen on Instagram for a while now so we were thrilled to see you start your own blog. Tell us a little about yourself and what was behind the decision to start blogging?
"I’m an interiors, lifestyle, and travel blogger from Chicago, USA. When I decided to start my blog, I had been sharing interiors photos on Instagram for about six months and had some wonderful collaborations with a few brands. While Instagram is amazing for sharing my own style and home, I was looking to dive deeper.
I wanted a space where I could share and curate things I find inspiring and be able to support other people in the worlds of design and art. It was a long process to get the blog up and running, but I couldn’t be happier with how it’s going. I love having the opportunity to invite readers in and share the things that influence and excite me. Highlighting brands, concepts, and even a bit of our own travels has been really rewarding!"
Stephen’s Instagram bio includes the hashtag #aneutralhome - does ‘a neutral home’ perfectly describe your collective interior styles?
"I think ‘a neutral home’ not only describes our interior styles, but also gives a view into our approach to life. We strive for a minimal, pared back home and are intentional about leaving some spaces empty. I believe the white space says as much about our aesthetic as the items we choose to bring into our home. We love the simplicity of natural materials (wood, marble, ceramics...) and warm neutrals because of their calming effect. We always have so much to do, but it’s important for us to focus on the priorities and create a home that’s filled with the things we love. "
Based on your interior aesthetic it’d be easy to make the mistake of thinking you live in Copenhagen rather than Chicago. Have you always been drawn to the Scandinavian style or when did you discover your love of minimal, neutral design?
"I have always loved a minimal aesthetic and the Scandinavian way of living simply. On our honeymoon trip to Copenhagen and Stockholm, I fell in love with Scandinavian design. We brought those influences back home with us and have loved building our home together with such simple and beautiful design. Now if only we could find some really great cardamom buns in Chicago!"
Are there any particular brands you’re loving at the moment?
Right now I’m really into simple but elegant ceramics from smaller brands, especially Cooee Design and Tracy Dixon Ceramics. We recently purchased a handmade porcelain bowl from Tracy, and I can’t wait for it to arrive soon!
Of course I look to Menu, Muuto, and Skagerak for fresh updates on Scandinavian classics, but Kristina Dam Studio also has caught my eye recently. Her take on Nordic Minimalism is mesmerizing, and I love her use of sculptural forms using classic materials.
Everything in your home is beautiful but do you have a favourite item? What interior items (if any) are currently on your wishlist?
" There’s so many to choose from! I think my favorite item is the Skagerak Georg mirror designed by Chris Liljenberg Halstrøm. Stephen and I love minimalist designs influenced by Scandinavian and Japanese aesthetics. We first saw the mirror in Copenhagen and immediately knew we had to have it. Since then, we’ve purchased several items from the Georg collection.
I have a growing wish list, especially as many brands are now introducing their autumn collections. At the top of my list is the recently announced Androgyne Side Table designed by Danielle Siggerud for Menu. Another item we’re hoping to purchase soon is the Revolve floor lamp by Bolia. I love furniture that can stand alone as sculptural pieces so these two items are perfect for our space."
We’re sure our readers will be able to get tons of inspiration from your account but are there any other Instagram accounts we should check out?
"There are so many incredible accounts I love to follow. Some of my favourites are
@lepetitfika for lovely neutrals and the most gorgeous Siberian cat
@christinathaisen for a stunning mix of old and new design
@amandaxelssson for all the best Scandinavian influences
@littledeersister for her warm and simple compositions
@stephen.menton (of course!) Though we live in the same home, Stephen’s style is so inspiring to me. Every day, he inspires me to live simply and embrace the open, breathing space.
Finally, we’d like to do some reading over lunch - which of your recent blog articles should we start with?
"I recently had the opportunity to interview one of my favourite artists, Anna Macdonald. Her perspective on creating art is so refreshing, and it’s wonderful to see how she loves helping new artists. You should definitely check her out for some serious abstract inspo!"
Photography Credit: Amy Menton