Styling Tribu: In Conversation with Rina

Here at Cosh Living, we love representing Belgian brand Tribù and have been supplying their outdoor furniture collections to Australia for many years. 

Tribù have a cohesive point of view. Across all aspects of their brand is a consistent identity - restrained in palette, minimal in form and thorough in materiality. Their showrooms and photoshoots depict their contemporary approach to discreet luxury, something that has defined the DNA of the brand over the years.

This iconic aesthetic has been pioneered by their in-house stylist Rina. Rina is part of the Tribu family, has been responsible for the styling at Tribù for more than 20 years. Married to Tribù founder Lode, and mother to current managing partners Koen and Tom, Rina's eye for fine detail is in the all the images produced Tribù. 

The team in Belgium sat down with Rina to chat about how how she developed her passion for style, where she gets her inspiration from and what her favourite shoot locations are. 

Rina, sitting on the Pure Outdoor Sofa - a timeless teak furniture collection by Tribu.  

 

Where does your passion for styling come from?
My passion for interior design, styling and architecture in general have been part of me for as long as I remember. As a child, I used to move the furniture in my room around a few times a year. I was only 17 (laughing) when I met my husband, but I did the same with Lode’s student room in Leuven.  

Has your style evolved through the years? And what influences your style?
Naturally your style evolves over the years. About 10 years ago the shapes were more angular and the trend was rather minimalistic. Now it can be more welcoming and warmer.  Furniture design is also more rounded and softer.

Personally, I have always been loyal to a contemporary style and discreet luxury, which is also Tribù's goal.

 

A striking duo - the Tao Outdoor Dining Table and Tosca Dining Chair, designed by Monica Armani for Tribù.

 

I find that your home and garden should radiate a visual serenity. They should be a place where you can rest away from the stresses of everyday life.

I don't really like the vintage or eclectic look, but I can see how these styles resonate for people. Rather, give me timeless contemporary furniture and objects. A nice example would be the Pure sofa, which has been an icon in the Tribù collection for more than 20 years and looks more modern today than when Lode first introduced it.

The Pure Sofa, an outdoor sofa collection that has stood the test of time. 

 

The colours and textures I choose are rather subtle and will always belong to the same colour range. Extremely contrasting colours do not create the feeling of calmness I am looking for, but once again, that is a personal choice. 

Where do you like to spend your free time? In a city or close to nature?
100% close to nature. We are extremely privileged to live in a very peaceful area, at the end of a quiet road and at the edge of a fantastic forest. Here you still hear the birds whistle, the squirrels run in your garden and sometimes you will even see a deer or a fox. For me, the silence and beauty of nature are priceless luxuries.

Where do you get your inspiration?
I often have my most creative ideas when I go for a walk in the forest to clear my head. However, I also get some inspiration from Pinterest, international design fairs, museums and cities, but I will always put my own stamp on the final styling. You can almost compare my creative process to a sponge, absorbing ideas and then putting my own spin on them.

 

Modern outdoor coffee and side tables - the Natal Alu X. 

 

As the stylist for Tribù you contribute hugely to the brand’s identity. How would you define Tribù’s design ethos?


We have always believed that the garden, the terrace and the outdoor spaces are extensions of the interior. They need to exist in symbiosis. This way, the whole radiates peace.

Tribù does this by creating furniture in harmony with nature and the environment. Our collections are also so beautiful and comfortable that they combine perfectly with the pieces inside a house. 

 

Rina's contemporary and minimal approach on full display - the Senja modular sofa. 

 

When you are choosing the location for a photo shoot, what are your criteria? And is there a particular location you would love to go back to?


For our photo shoots, we mostly go to southern Europe due to the weather and the light. But that is not really an easy way to find the perfect location. Not all owners of fantastic villas in the best spots are willing to rent their houses out for a photo shoot. That is why we often also look for design boutique hotels that we then rent out completely for the entire crew.


Which is also the answer to your next question, because one of those hotels is my favourite location, namely Torre di Moravola, where we did the shoot for the Tosca collection.

 

A stunning location to shoot the Tosca outdoor lounge collection - the Umbria region in central Italy. 

 

Apart from that, the Neuendorf House in Mallorca, designed by architect John Pawson, is one of my favourite locations. That was a very successful shoot – everything was just perfect, so the result was also fantastic. If my two sons, Koen and Tom, are then also pleased with the result, I am naturally very happy.

Finally, I just want to add that it is so great when your work is your passion. Tribù is a wonderful family business and I am very proud of it. 

The Senja Modular Outdoor Sofa sitting happily on location. 

 

A version of this story originally appeared on the Tribu website.

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