i’ve written before about my love of nina+co’s beautiful breakfast collection, so it was wonderful to have the chance to catch up with nina at a recent function+form gathering held at the new dean street café in soho, for which she has designed the interior.
the café is a social enterprise run by homelessness charity centrepoint, housed in the london building where the charity was founded in 1969. the charity provides accommodation, health support and life skills to homeless young people, aged 16-25, to get them back into education, training and employment. the café at dean street is unique because it is staffed by these young people, often taking their first steps in a customer service role, enabling them to gain the real-life skills that will help them into employment in the future.
i really love the light, airy environment nina has created in the space, with reclaimed english oak or birch ply from sustainably managed forests has been used throughout, accented with quirky playful neon lighting and pale blue pegboard walls.
i’ve been wanting to introduce a little interview column to the blog for a while, getting to know the daily routines, wellbeing rituals and travel inspirations of the people behind some of my favourite brands, and nina very graciously volunteered to be my first subject (thanks so much nina!)
so without further ado…
nina woodcroft, founder, nina+co
describe your weekday morning routine
i put the kettle on, and while it boils i do a few minutes of yoga. once i have a cup of smokey earl grey in my hands i venture to check my phone and perhaps mix up the flour, water and sourdough starter if it’s a bread-baking day. after a shower i’ll knead the bread, make toast and coffee and then open up my laptop to start the work day.
how does your weekend morning routine differ?
we like to get out for a walk or a cycle in search of a coffee and a pastry for breakfast.
describe your favourite corner of your home.
we chose to move around a bit over the past year to experience different neighbourhoods in amsterdam, travelling light, adopting a home and spending a few months in each place. our first apartment near the amstel river in the east had an open staircase leading up to an attic bedroom with a beautiful, big, climbing philodendron growing up it. my favourite part of the second apartment was the sheltered, sunny corner of the garden where i could work from my laptop and keep an eye on the vegetable patch we planted there. and in the third apartment we had french doors that opened onto a very pretty and quintessentially amsterdam view of the bloemgracht canal.
whats your favourite home fragrance?
home-made bread in the oven.
what’s your go-to comfort food dish?
lately it’s a mushroom pie. i like to make them with a pastry bottom as well as a top for a good pastry to filling ratio.
how do you like to unwind on a sunday evening?
by cooking a tasty dinner and watching a movie on netflix.
where do you go for a weekend escape?
i visit my friends in their lovely cottage on the isle of man. we take the dogs for long walks and bake scones in the rayburn oven.
finally, whats your dream vacation destination?
tobago. or anywhere in the caribbean.
dean street cafe, 54 dean street, london w1
dean street cafe photography © anna stathaki; nina at home photography © tobias ross-southall