Bally Collective

Bally Collective

Creative perspectives on the holiday season.

Martina Mondadori

@martinamondadori @cabanamagazine

Martina Mondadori loves colors, prints and patterns. Her passion for maximalism led her to launch Cabana, the bi-annual magazine that celebrates houses and places with soul. As the magazine’s founder and editor-in-chief, Martina fills the pages of Cabana with pictures of interior details, lush gardens and engaging stories from designers and decorators from around the world.

What are your traditions for the winter holidays?
The Christmas tree. We normally [decorate] it when we get to the mountains in Cortina, using the same decorations I used as a child. I have memories linked to every single one of them, like little Madeleine de Proust. I have also kept a pair of baby shoes for each of my three children, and we use these to decorate the tree as well. It is not a manicured tree, but a very personal one indeed!

What is your favorite part of the holidays?
Anything involving my kids, they keep traditions alive. This year will be a particularly emotional one as it’s the first Christmas without my mum who would always spend the holidays with us.
Do you prefer being the host or a guest? And why?
I am such a control freak, I prefer being a host!

Who is the most difficult person to find a gift for?
My partner dislikes things so it’s always a matter of finding the right book (that he doesn’t already have).

What is the most memorable winter holiday? Where? And with whom?
I have a very fond memory of my first time in NYC. It was December and I was there with my father and my two brothers. The city was magical and full of snow. I remember playing snowballs in Central Park, walking into FAO Schwarz, and listening to the carols at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

What was the last present you bought?
A set of vintage tea cups at a flea market.

Why did you decide to launch Cabana?
In 2013, I had just moved to London and was suddenly feeling homesick, missing Italy and my childhood home. As therapy, I started making mood boards mixing Italian and English interiors, and that’s how it all started…

What are your best decorating tips?
Be bold, layer, take your time, have fun and avoid perfection.
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