Alina Roytberg’s Brookline home is a study in contrasts.
Alina Roytberg, cofounder of the Boston-based fragrance and cosmetics brand Fresh, doesn’t like curves, or color, at least not in home design. Her Brookline condo, designed by Hacin + Associates Architects, features gray-stained ash floors and furniture in grays, taupes, and browns, with books and accessories adding a pop of color to the neutral palette. Roytberg approaches her wardrobe with the same eye, favoring gray and black clothing paired with vintage jewelry and bold accessories.
Roytberg, who spends much of her time traveling the world on behalf of Fresh, does the majority of her shopping online—and abroad, when she finds herself with a spare moment. “I’ve learned to utilize my free time effectively,” she says. In Paris, for instance, she purchased a navy calfskin-and-suede Céline bag in the 15 minutes she had between appointments. In London, she always makes time for Topshop and Miss Selfridge, on Oxford Street.
All of this running around would seem to contradict her self-professed love of high heels. “There are funny truths you get from your mother, and mine always used to say, ‘Change your shoes and your bra every day,’” Roytberg says.“Even though she probably only owned two pairs of shoes.”
In Tune: Music, says Roytberg, is an important part of the Fresh experience—she’s curated the sounds in all stores since the first one opened 21 years ago in the South End. This Fender guitar was a thank-you gift from the Los Angeles band Silent Star, for her help styling the group. A rare photography book of Joy Division—and a pair of Lauren Urstadt calfskin-studded driving gloves—speak to Roytberg’s enduring love of punk.
Global Bazaar: Clockwise from left, Roytberg uses this resin curtain tieback, a gift from the Chinese business icon Balbina Wong, as tabletop décor; an ornate plate holds two recently released Fresh lip treatments; Roytberg saved this package of playing cards from her first-ever Air France Flight to Paris, in 1986; a vintage cigar box adds a graphic element to the tablescape.
Walk This Way: Roytberg, a self-described shoe addict, ascribes personalities to her heels. “I do believe shoes support us,” she says. “They have their own life.” Pictured here, from left, are styles from Prabal Gurung for Target, Prada, Marni, Alexandre Birman, and Lanvin.
Doll Space: Cloisonné pieces have inspired many of the patterns used on Fresh packaging. The limited-edition, Robert Best–designed Russian Barbie represents Roytberg’s heritage, though she never owned one of the dolls growing up in the Soviet Union.
Top-Shelf: Built-in bookcases are deep and wide enough to accommodate Roytberg’s many “art/design/architecture/travel/passion” books. Céline’s calfskin-and-suede “Trapeze” bag is her current “it” tote. “I am a multiple-pairs-of-shoes girl, but one fabulous bag is all I ever want,” she says. The framed art in the background is a pastel drawing by Roytberg herself.
All That Glitters: Roytberg organizes her many pieces of costume jewelry—which range from inexpensive vintage baubles to modern styles by Freedom Jewelry—by category and style.
Office Space: Roytberg’s desk is accented by orange Poppin accessories, a Fresh candle, and a Pantone color fan deck. Duplo figures, she says, “bring back playful memories” of her now-teenage daughters as little girls.
Beauty Queen: The Fresh cofounder loves all of the company’s products, naturally. Her two favorites? The Soy Face Cleanser and Sugar Advanced Therapy lip treatment. Yellow spray roses, which remind her of her grandmother’s garden in Ukraine, are her favorite flowers.