by Kimberly Rae Miller
Borough/Neighborhood: 55th and 9th Ave
Profession: Vice President, Nying Zemo
A few years ago, Simmy Pappachen’s good friend Shalini Acharya-Holman, offered to help her start a business. While Simmy was working at Psychology Today’s Therapy Directory, she thought it was time to take her background in art from the Academy of Art in San Francisco, her degree in Fashion Marketing and Bachelors Degree in Business Administration from Berkeley College in Manhattan and put them all to good use. Simmy left Psychology Today magazine and began her voyage in luxury rug creation with her friend Shalini with her first ticket to Kathmandu, Nepal.
When we think of style most of us think of the contents of our closet, how important is it to put that same energy into styling your living space?
I think it’s pretty important. If you understand the similarities, [decorating] can give you an outlet to be more creative and express your individual style. When you make your place a home it should feel like your sanctuary.
Layering accessories for home or for apparel are interrelated. Earrings, coat, bag scarf, dress boots, Pillows, Throws rugs etc. The more you add on the more interest. Good style, whether it’s apparel or home design is knowing how to add or subtract; whether you want a clean minimal look, eclectic, traditional, or modern looks.
What considerations should people make in styling their living environment?
People should probably consider making everything look interesting or pleasing to the eye, like keeping remote controls in an interesting or pretty box, case etc. Keep your kids drawing in picture frames instead of tacking it on the fridge. If you have shoes that you leave out, don’t just put it on a shoe rack. Maybe use a pretty bookcase instead.
Must haves for every home?
A Nying Zemo rug of course! Who needs a sofa? You can sleep on it, sit on it, but seriously, A rug can really set the tone of a room or even change it. The way a diamond necklace can change a little black dress to glamorous.
What goes into your process when working with designers?
The Nying Zemo company is a rug curator. We take time and care with our collections. Our process when working with artists takes months even a couple of years to put a collection together. We take fine artists work and translate that work into handmade rugs. Nying Zemo Tibetan rugs are an investment you can walk on.
When you see a collection from Nying Zemo, there has already been a lot of time and effort that has been put into the rug, even before a client has purchased it. We work with the artists to see which of his or her works will translate beautifully. We hand pick colors, make strike-offs etc. Not only do the rugs come from art pieces but Tibetan rugs are investment art pieces themselves. Nying Zemo pieces are limited editions. When the art rug is purchased it takes at least 4 months to hand-knot the piece in Kathmandu, Nepal. All Nying Zemo rugs are custom ordered, which is why it is important to have it right even before we make the investment rug. Everything is hand-done, from sorting, carding, spinning, dyeing, weaving, washing and packaging.
Favorite Shopping Spots in the Five Boroughs?
The main place I shop is Loehmann’s on 17th street. It’s pretty much a one stop shop for me. I can get a beautiful gown or a new pair of jeans, at Loehmann’s. I also like to go to wholesale district on Broadway between 28th and 34th for accessories, mainly earrings because I tend to lose earrings a lot and I like street shopping in Soho. Some of my favorite apparel companies are, Necessary Objects, French Connection, Donna Ricco, Sinequanone, London Times, Zara, Banana Republic. I like the vintage looks.