Ilaria Miani is a Rome-based designer whose passion for restoring, renovating and breathing life into some of Italy’s abandoned architectural jewels has spanned the last twenty years. Miani’s passion for restoring abandoned farmhouses, palaces and villages is inspired first and foremost by the building itself. A bit of colored plaster still holding onto a crumbling wall; a stone niche carved by ancient hands; or the sagging massive wooden beams that once supported an existence that has long since faded are her starting points. “These are the elements that speak to me, that reveal the soul of the building.” Miani turns to Italy’s artisans to help bring these buildings into the 21st century. Tiles are handcrafted of clay and baked in nearby kilns; tables and beds are forged with the same hammers that have been used for generations; and chairs carved by carpenters using ancient tools. The landscape too, informs and inspires. Whether it is the rolling hills of Tuscany, the gentle waters of a Venetian canal or the cobbled streets of Rome, Miani’s treatments speak the same language, evoking and reinterpreting a timeless language. While Miani’s creations are rooted in the past, they are very much a thing of the present. Her own designs - modern, sleek and colorful - encompass every detail of her projects. From the chairs and the lamps to the forks and the linens, the effortless casual sophistication that has become her trademark, creates a uniquely cohesive whole.