Beforeigners actress Krista Kosonen has found her favorite spot. It’s the corner of the living room of her new home, where she can watch life go by from the shelter of Helsinki’s historic Temppeliaukio.
The autumn wind blows across the sheltered cliffs of Temppeliaukio as the season’s last sweater-clad picnickers brave the coolness. The historic location of the old building, and the way it allowed light to flood into its depths, was what made Krista Kosonen and her family fall in love with this four-room apartment. After her previous home on the first floor, the fourth floor feels good – the sky and cliffs out the window are soothing, and watching life unfold from the comfort of her own sofa is all the entertainment the screen actress needs.
I'm on board with the small decisions, but I'm not a planner at all.
The move was preceded by a lot of planning and decisions, but Krista admits that she shied away from all of it.
"I'm anxious about all the planning and the space in between. My spouse plans everything, I answer questions like 'this neutral or that dark?'. I'm on board with the small decisions, but I'm not a planner at all," says Krista.
By her own admission, she’s somewhat of a “laissez faire” decorator, in fact, she can think of one thing that was critical to her: the atmosphere and sense of history of the old house. An old house carries with it a sense of time and the past, something you don't find in the structures of modern houses. That and the landscape that opens up through the big windows.
Temppeliaukio Church bears the imprints of early 20th century architectural competitions that were only resolved in the late 1960s. The original vertical church was ultimately replaced by a domed design by the architect brothers Timo and Tuomo Suomalainen. The church's soaring natural stone structures and the square's decades-old architecture influence the home's interior design, while the large windows of Krista’s home invite history inside.
"I'm fascinated by the history of Temppeliaukio – it's an interesting place, with streets running off the church in five different directions and, leading all over Helsinki," Krista says.
Art and books make our home feel like home. They have accumulated over the years, they have a familiarity and yet they always bring out something new.
The feel of the home suits the character and the milieu of the old building – it is anything but minimalist and modern. Although the initial intention wasn't to create an integrated interior design or employ well-considered decor, the atmosphere is nonetheless balanced and relaxed. The light, open-plan kitchen is balanced by a large wooden dining table and a huge, dark blue sofa. Stacks of books and paintings transport you to other worlds and memories. Amid the art and books, time seems to stand still.
"Art and books make our home feel like home. They have accumulated over the years, they have a familiarity and yet they always bring out something new," Krista reflects. The art brings personality to the space.
More important than the decor is the comfort and coziness of everyday life. A home should feel comfortable and you should be able to be as you are in that space.
The light blue foyer welcomes visitors, and the white ceiling and gold frames make the narrow hallway feel cheerful. For the bedroom, the couple chose a soothing dark blue, against which the black details and colorful textiles are a strong complement. The warm shade of dark blue on the walls both defines the mood of the room and supports the other colors. The bedroom's old double doors open out through the spacious open plan kitchen and living room to the windows that look out onto the domed peak of the famous church. In contrast to the dark bedroom, the warm, lively kitchen-living room provides space for light, in pleasing harmony with the furniture in the large room. A delicate, light beige wall completes the paintings, grounding them. Because a home should feel like a home, Krista's daughter was also allowed to choose the wall color, curtains and paintings in her own room.
"I was sure she would choose a pink paint, but to my surprise the choice was a fresh light yellow. I checked several times. She is really happy with her choice," says Krista.
The yellow background is a perfect match for the ripe watermelons of her daughter's favorite print, Frida Kahlo's Viva la Vida, and the yellow stone house across the courtyard.
More important than the decor is the comfort and coziness of everyday life. A home should feel comfortable and you should be able to be as you are in that space. Often at home, Krista's favorite spot is curled on the corner of the sofa, reading.
"I'm not house proud, even though home means a lot to me. If I had to choose between playing or cleaning, I'd choose playing," she smiles.