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Annabelle Moehlmann, Curator, Founder and CEO of Land of Belle

Conversations is a monthly feature spotlighting women I admire, with charme, style, and truly inspiring careers. 

I’ve always been passionate about people’s stories, from their backgrounds to their morning routines, favorite places to eat, places shop, travel, and a few other things. 

Today, meet Annabelle Moehlmann, she is the Founder and CEO of Land of Belle, an online store with the most astonishing curation of home accessories, inspired by both her passions for travel and beautiful craftsmanship.

Annabelle was recently on the cover of the prestigious interior design magazine Veranda, I mean, how cool is that? Personally, I find her very inspiring, seeing such a young face thriving in the world of interiors. I love her approach to mixing different fabrics, materials, and the color palettes she puts together—beautiful contrasts—when it comes to table settings. She's an authentic tastemaker with great style. 

Thank you for this interview Annabelle, I can't wait for my readers to learn more about you and Land of Belle! 

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Can you tell us a bit about your background?
I  grew up in Manhattan with my mother who is a total aesthete. She had a clothing boutique that featured unique European brands on the Upper East Side for twenty five years and was always reworking the rooms in her home, shifting art and furniture around to refresh. In New York, my childhood was filled with trips to museums, the theatre, and ballet,  and all of this instilled in me an unwavering appreciation for the arts and design, which has definitely informed my interests—both personal and professional—today.

How would you describe what you do?
I'm the Founder and CEO of Land of Belle, a home accessories company that features a curated collection of home decor items from the world's leading brands and artisans in the through our online store, wedding registry platform, blog, and seasonal pop-up boutiques through our online store, wedding registry platform, blog, and seasonal pop-up boutiques. 

What has lead you down the path to this point in your career?
My professional life has allowed me to work in different industries of interest to me—design, travel, and food—but the common thread among them has been luxury and working with products that I find beautiful and inspiring. I have worked as a designer, in PR, merchandising, sales, and business development, all of which collectively prepared me to start my company. There were things that I loved about every position I had worked in, and one day the idea for Land of Belle came to me and it was this "aha moment" in that I realized there was a hole in the market for global, artisan-made decor items that Land of Belle would fill and that starting the company would allow me it to incorporate my favorite elements of every job I had held.

What sparked your interest in the world of décor?
I've always been greatly affected and inspired by my surroundings, I can't say there was a particular moment when I became interested in decor, as I can't remember a time when I wasn't. 

What inspires you when it comes to interior design?
Our surroundings have such a huge impact on how we feel and see the world. I find myself drawn to airy spaces that feel steeped in history yet simultaneously fresh and contemporary. I love a mix of neutrals, soothing cool colors that remind me of summer and the sea, and deep jewel tones that add depth and interest. I adore beautiful prints and patterns that evoke the places in the world I love most and also surrounding myself with decorative objects that do the same. 

Are there any designers, architects, famous interiors or styles that you particularly admire?
Too many to name! Favorites include Andrea Palladio, John Soane, Yves Saint Laurent, and Renzo Mongiardino. Today I really love the work of Paolo Moschino, Jacques Garcia, Studio Peregalli, Axel Vervoordt, and Joseph Dirand. 

What has been the most exciting moment in your career to date?
I am beyond grateful for so many moments, among them being the reception of our first pop-up in Amagansett and then, of course, being featured on the cover of Veranda magazine was a true (and totally unexpected) honor.

What’s the biggest challenge you’ve come across so far?
Committing myself to spending as much time doing the things I'm not passionate about but are integral to running the business (read: paperwork!) as I do the more creative, fun work. 

As someone who has started their own business, what is the secret to your success?
Do something that feels true to who you are, makes you excited to wake up in the morning, and that on the good days doesn't feel like work. Know the things you're good at and figure out how to properly delegate the things you don't enjoy and will likely never excel at, and don't feel bad about it—you can't do it all, nor should you!

So changing tracks a little...

What time do you wake up in the morning?

What is your morning routine?
Usually, I will get up at about and make myself a cappuccino or hot water with ginger and lemon depending on my mood, and then get back in bed for a little moment to read the news, check email and scroll through my Instagram. Then I stretch for a few minutes, make my bed, and it's off to the races. 

What does a typical day look like for you?
They vary, and I really value that aspect of my work. I have the freedom to control my time and what my schedule looks like which is a very good feeling for me. I have found that I'm most productive when I group similar activities into certain days of the week. For instance, I'll use one or two days to focus on meetings, use another day for administrative work and emails, and set aside a day for strategy and new projects. Of course there are days that require a mixed bag and that's fine too, but in general, we get more done if avoid jumping around too much.

What is your philosophy on food?
I believe in moderation and keeping all food groups in your diet if you're able to. I think when you eliminate a type of food it becomes more difficult for your body to process it when you reintroduce it into your diet. I try and listen to my cravings and eat accordingly. There are times when I crave eggs or red meat often, and others when I can barely stand the sight of them for months.
I love food and believe in enjoying the delicious things the world has to offer—and if those things are at times unhealthy, not beating myself up too much! 

Do you have any beauty and wellness rituals?
I'd say my only true "ritual" is when I get into bed at night. I always keep a carafe or two of water next to my bed (people are amazed at how much water I consume in the night), spritz myself with what I call my "bedtime" perfume (L'Artisan Parfumeur's L'Été en Douce) which instantly relaxes me, and then when I'm in bed I put on Grown Alchemist's Intensive Persian Rose hand cream, and will take some magnesium or a tincture of CBD oil to get me super relaxed. Recently, I've also been spritzing my pillow with This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray which is pretty dreamy. Because scent in the most powerful scent, I find there's something really soothing about having particular scents that are specifically tied to evening and sleep that help me unwind from the day. 

In terms of beauty practices...
For hair, I swear by Marie Robinson Salon and see Mark de Bolt for color, Liana Le for cuts and Johnny Rackleff for blowouts.

I also like a Bio-Lift facial every four or five months at Rescue Spa

What are your top skincare products?
La Mer Eye Concentrate—have tried so many eye creams and nothing compares for dark circles and deep moisturizing 
Biologique Recherche Lotion P50V 1970—my skin feels glow-y and squeaky clean after using it. I prefer it to the regular formula because it's slightly less harsh and contains vitamins to nourish the skin 
Susan Ciminelli Algae Deep Cleanse—a really amazing, deep cleaning smooth exfoliator that gets into your pores and has this wonderful, ocean scent. Highly recommend!
Tata Harper Resurfacing Mask—an instant pick me up that gives you a glow. 
True Botanicals Cellular Repair Serum—it smells like Marrakech and instantly brings me back!
Caudalie Premier Cru Moisturizer—so rich but doesn't clog your pores... it gets me through the winter months.

What is your favorite workout and how often do you do it?
I like to mix it up but tried and true favorites include FlyBarre and Body by Simone, and Barry's Bootcamp. Body by Simone is an incredible workout and so uplifting, you always leave smiling.  I used to go three times a week when I lived downtown, it's on 26th between 11th and 12th which isn't ideal but it's worth the trip. I find Flybarre to be effective, pleasant and convenient. For me, Barry's is abrasive and hellish at times but I love the results I see when I do it regularly and my husband's game for it and we like working out together.

On your days off, what do you do to relax?
I've recently gotten very into cooking, which has been a happy surprise for me as I honestly didn't see it coming and thought I'd always be more of a take-out kind of girl. I find it to be so much fun to experiment, and really grounding and meditative. I also love visiting museums and art and design fairs, going to the movies, and theatre, and I'd be lying if I didn't say I find a good shop to be incredibly relaxing and the most fun. I love binge watching great tv series with my husband, but I hate the feeling of wasting the day and so we try and do that on quiet nights at home instead. 

Favorite restaurants in New York and beyond?
New York: I Sodi, Sette Mezzo, Bohemian, Le Bernardin, Loring Place, and East Pole Fish Bar. 

Further afield... I love De Kas in Amsterdam, Trattoria Sostanza in Florence, Petrelle in Paris, Hartwood in Tulum, Al Moro in Rome, Chez Nous in Charleston, La Colombe D'Or in Saint-Paul de Vence, La Conca del Sogno on Nerano, The Landing in Harbour Island, and Issaya Siamese Club in Bangkok.

What is next on the agenda for “Land of Belle”?
Sign up for our mailing list and find out! But definitely more pop-ups and beautiful new product collections on our site. 

Lastly, what does “A Joyous Life” look like for you?
Family, kindness, continued learning, friends, creativity, travel, laughter, art, generosity, love, a beautiful home, relaxation, and inspiring surroundings!

March 26, 2019