Sara Wreschner, co-owner of Sonny – a Copenhagen café offering great coffee and homey food in elegantly modern surroundings – reflects on design and comfort.
A home inspires and delights – and is a place where you can feel entirely at ease. In much the same way, Sara Wrenscher’s Copenhagen café, Sonny, which she runs together with her husband David Andersen, offers locals and tourists a respite from the busy city.
Through a perfect blend of classic and contemporary interior design, the space is inviting and comfortable, and word of mouth has seen the café become a hotspot for hungry locals and tourists looking for healthy, homemade food with organic ingredients.
‘My husband and I were really good friends before we became romantically involved four years ago. In the beginning of our relationship, we would hook up and cook together. At that time, David wanted to open a restaurant and when the premises became available, we took it from there. We both wanted to open a space that wasn’t intimidating – that was unique but didn’t feel overly done,’ explains Sara.
The aim was to create an informal setting where guests can feel at ease. “We travel a lot and often look at the details that make a place atmospheric, memorable,” she says. It’s not an exact science, but rather an intuitive process that eschews the mainstream in favour of personal, homely touches.
Sonny Café is a long, narrow space that features high ceilings and a large front window that floods the space with sunlight. It previously housed a Moroccan tearoom, and Sara and David spent months carefully painting over lime green floors and pink walls, thoughtfully devising a new, calming layout that would make Sonny unrestrained by tradition and notions of good taste. Utilitarian lamps created by designer friends Borg Brückne, classic Danish chair designs and Swedish textiles with pomegranate prints are set against a backdrop of natural materials to create a warm setting that isn’t overwhelming. ‘When a lot of people are gathered in a room, they become the colour. That’s why we’ve selected subdued hues that complement the life lived within,’ Sara notes.
The couple’s home in Vesterbro is similarly welcoming. Just like Sara’s baking for Sonny, the interior design is classic with a twist. ‘I don’t need it to be feminine or for it to look like something from a design magazine. We’ve added the things we need and that will last – and, luckily, David has a good eye for things,’ Sara explains.
Their uncluttered yet inviting home is filled with cosy-chic pieces that include a generous sofa and marble coffee table that live alongside treasured cookbooks, holiday mementoes and a selection of artwork, much of which was gifted or carries personal history. ‘I’m quite sentimental about the material things I own,’ she says.
Sara’s interest in design started at school, where she would create colourful projects filled with design classics. Today, aesthetics go hand in hand with practicality. ‘It’s important to me to create a home that feels lived in and relaxing. To that end, our large sofa is a cosy focal point, practical yet comfortable. The marble coffee table is easy to keep clean yet a delight to sit around and eat. Our home is something that has come about over time. We appreciate quality and simplicity. I like to source objects on online auctions and many of the things we have acquired over the years are a combination of auction finds and new objects,’ she says.
One new addition is a Swan chair, which David gave Sara for her birthday earlier this year. ‘I’ve always considered it to be such a special piece of design, comfortable yet distinct. It took me a while to decide on the colour. The shape of the chair is so sophisticated that it doesn’t really need to be bright to stand out in a room. But the blue spoke to me – and, as David says, it matches my eyes.’
And so, for Sara, the principle that makes both her home and café places you want to return to are the same: ‘It’s about letting personality come to the forefront and creating a comfortable space where you can live and relax in equal measure.’