Laurence van Seventer set up Lolo Polazzo a year-and-a-half ago, following a long-standing desire to design and create industrial lighting through welding and plasma cutting. Working in her The Hague-based studio, Laurence individually crafts chandeliers and lamps from sheet metal and recycled materials, such as bicycle chains. Hospitality Interiors speaks with Laurence to find out more about her inspirations, the importance of recycling and what her lighting brings to hospitality spaces …
Why did you decide to set up Lolo Palazzo?
I had wanted to work with steel and light for 15 years. It was a thing that was on my mind all the time. So I decided to do so about one and a half years ago now. It has been a big learning process, and took me about one year to create an entire collection.
What do you personally find interesting about lighting design?
I like the contrasts in interiors, of different materials, raw and soft, and also the mix of different styles. I am also very interested in the light spectacles that can be created.
My first motivation was to create graceful lights with raw materials. During my last work, Ballroom Blitz, I was really inspired to create an old-fashioned chandelier model made from raw materials like bicycle chains.
Please describe your lighting in five words.
Tough, graceful, sturdy, elegant, spectacular.
What can your lighting bring to an overall design scheme?
I think it can add a warm and industrial chic atmosphere, but at the same time a blast effect – depending on the wattage.
What drew you to using recycled materials in your designs?
When I bought my first apartment, which I decorated myself, I went to scrap yards and found many things for my house – for instance, an old counter for my kitchen, as well as old drip trays from slaughterhouses, and much more. Hanging around there and watching all this old steel inspired me.
How important is it to recycle?
We live in a world now that has to recycle. There is so much beautiful old steel to obtain, and I found it a challenge to work with this. Of course, the issue of waste has become more of a problem in recent years. It is a good thing that people are more aware of this problem now, and try to find solutions to recycle – but of course there is still a lot to do.
What do you enjoy about working on hospitality projects?
What I like most is the light effect that my lamps can add to a space, as well as the challenge of finding the best model for a certain project.
Which have been your most prominent hospitality projects to date?
I made a big chandelier of sheet metal for the Blue Marlin Ibiza last year. Furthermore, I have made chandeliers for some restaurants in The Hague. I have a new project coming up, which is a well-known bar and restaurant in The Hague, as well as an organic lunchroom in Amsterdam.
Do you have any tips on how to light interior spaces effectively?
This totally depends on what the client wants to obtain in their space – what the atmosphere has to be. I sometimes work with a halogen bulb of 90W, which won a price in Holland for saving up to 40%. This gives a lot of light and a lot of patterns on the ceiling, walls and floor, and when it is dimmed it gives a much more quiet atmosphere. But sometimes when the client wants a warmer and softer effect I use LED bulbs.
What are your plans for the future?
I will probably go to Ibiza and settle myself there. I am selling my products already at [interiors company] KsaR Living, and just did a project with them in Formentera and some villas in Ibiza. I have been asked to set up an art gallery together with some creatives, as there is a lack of galleries and an art movement on the island.
Furthermore, I want to continue with the classic chandelier models. I have just started to design lamp shades of braided steel that are going to be sold in Ibiza, and I want to continue making mirrors from braided bicycle chains. And lamp bases! But there are many more things in mind…