Grant Lim on designing inspired living spaces

Grant Lim sits in his office, running his hands across the surface of his table. “When I choose tiles,” he says, “I ask myself, how does this make me feel?” 

Grant Lim on designing inspired living spaces
DESIGNING WITH FEELINGS. Grant Lim, curator and founder of Home Studio, loves to design using pieces that inspire and tell a story. 
“More than aesthetics, what draws me in is the feel of a piece and the inspirational moment that occasioned its creation,” he says while studying tiles’ ridges, their dips, and rises. 

Anyone can’t spend more than 10 minutes with Lim without getting a sense of his love affair with design. He talks about his passion with an adoration one normally reserves for their favorite things. 

It’s no surprise that he’s made a career out of it. 

Disappointed at the lack of variety and quality tiles and fixtures for a renovation project he had in 1997, he realized an opportunity to meet such demand. He then founded Home Studio, a home and design store in San Juan that sells luxury furniture, authentic Italian tiles, quality lights, and high-end mattresses. 

The style acumen required for curating such an extensive array of unique and sophisticated items comes effortlessly to Lim, who has learned all about the Italian design philosophy through the years of being an avid follower of design and the arts.

“My appreciation for design and architecture is an ongoing and continuous journey,” he says. “And this journey is what I want to share with my clients. I’m a people person, so I enjoy conversations with them. We both learn from each other.”

While personal home curators are usually thought of as distant specialists, this curator’s keen eye for design is something shoppers at Home Studio benefit from. Lim personally talks customers through every piece to help them fulfill their vision.

Grant Lim on designing inspired living spaces
Home Studio offers luxury furniture, authentic Italian tiles, quality lights, and high-end mattresses (@homestudio_ph/Instagram)
“My choice of products is not dictated by trends, what’s in fashion or by popular brands,” he shares. “I go for products made by people who are driven by their values—products with soul. I especially like the ones that have rich stories attached to them. Stories always connect people.”

Of course, the stories are part of the experience. He immerses every client in his world—as they look at marble tiles and studying the natural cracks of their surface, he’ll launch into an anecdote about Michelangelo, who carved the Statue of David from a slab of Carrara marble harvested from the recesses of modern-day Tuscany.

Every furniture piece, naturally, has a story, too. One luxe tile, for example, was inspired by a twig on the road. One Piero Lissoni piece was modeled after a paper napkin he was using during morning coffee. Hearing these stories elevates clients’ perception of design. Suddenly, these inanimate objects become undeniably personal. 

“When a story’s involved, there’s feeling involved,” says Lim. And when you’re selecting pieces for your home, Lim says feeling is important, anchoring your identity on something tangible and tactile.

“After getting the kind of aesthetic they’re into, I’ll come up with a shortlist of ideas and eventually show them the pieces in the store. If a piece makes their heart leap as much as mine, I know I’ve made a match,” shares Lim. 

Despite the wide range of choices available in his store, in the end, he says, it’s always about what fits every client’s personality, budget, and preference. 

Grant Lim on designing inspired living spaces
Lim helps his clients fulfill their visions using the knowledge he has learned from being an avid follower of design and the arts. (Photo from @homestudio_ph/Instagram)
“We curate masterpieces for your home. We treat every space differently. We work hand in hand to make sure our clients’ vision is actualized and fine-tuned.”

Topics: Grant Lim , Home Studio , design and architecture , Tuscany
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