R O M I L L Y  N E W M A N

Chef & Blogger

 Photography by Ola Wilk

T H E  O B J E C T:

Her Grandfather's Desk

Photography by Olivia Joan AD

Q: Can you describe a sentimental object in your home with a special place in your heart? What memories or emotions does it evoke when you look at or interact with it? How has this object influenced your sense of identity and belonging?

A: My grandfather passed away when I was eleven, but  in the time we had we formed a very strong bond. On paper, we were quite dissimilar, but he appreciated, encouraged, and entertained my passions and desires wholeheartedly. He  was eager to learn about what excited me, show me things that he cared about, and share stories and lessons for me to hold onto . I inherited his personal desk and it's been a fixture of every childhood bedroom and adult apartment since. It's a beautiful piece of furniture, but it's so much more.Romilly's Grandfather's home in Architectural Digest

 Q: Sentimental objects often bridge the gap between the past and the present. Could you share a story about how a particular object became so meaningful to you? Has its significance evolved, and if so, how has it adapted to the changing chapters of your life?

A: When I would visit my grandparents growing up, there were specific items of furniture that stood out to me. Lenny’s desk was one. With time, I realize, it was not only because of its striking appearance, but because of the respect and admiration I had for my grandfather, and what the desk ultimately symbolized. He built something from nothing, and did it all for the ones he loved. This beautiful piece of furniture was a labor of love, and a representation of the things he gave up, the time he spent, and ultimately the pride he had. When I sit there, I feel connected to him, and it makes me want to work harder, be kinder, and push myself in directions I may be scared of.

Photography by Brett Waren

Q: The sentimental value of an object is often intertwined with the people who are part of its narrative. Could you recount an instance where a sentimental object became a source of connection or shared history among family members or friends? How does the presence of this object enhance the sense of kinship and emotional bonds within your home?

A: There’s a long-standing (semi) joke with my brother about the desk. I guard it with my life, and refuse to give it up, but recently we made a deal that if he becomes the manager of a major league basketball team he can take the desk to his office. Lenny would want it that way.Photography by Olivia Joan AD


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