“Etre Heureux en rendant heureux” – this adage which translates roughly as finding happiness through creating happiness, is a favorite saying of one of my heroes: Axel Vervoordt, the Belgium interior and product designer, art dealer, and stylemaker. For Axel, this core idea expresses the commitment to inspire audiences through discovering and transmitting the beautiful, with a deep respect for everything that is authentic. In Axel’s work, the concept of beauty is made physical. He harnesses elements made from nature – light, water, metal, and wood – blends with a modern aesthetic and punctuates with fine art – the kind of art that just puts a pit in your stomach. For Axel, modern doesn’t mean new, and beauty isn’t about being young. It’s about time, history, and authenticity. Axel is my hero because Modernplum is about that also. Like Axel, we are about making and designing that digs for beauty and timelessness. While our products are new, the endurance of linen as a home staple provides a continuity between the past and present that is palpable and important. Linen is beautiful and modern all at once. I call linen the light catcher among other things — you can spot linen a mile away just by the way is reflects light. Thank you, Axel for pointing the way. Axel has a new book out — Living with Light which showcases twenty interior projects that all use light as a primary inspiration.