Talking Stock: Casa Design
The day she graduated from Northeastern, Zhanna Drogobetsky’s parents, owners of Watertown’s Italian Interiors, handed her a set of keys—not to a new car, but to their new Brookline furniture and lighting showroom, Italian Design. “I always joke that my college graduation present was an invitation to slavery,” says Drogobetsky, “but in reality, I love the independence and creativity that owning a business allows.” Nearly a decade later, that passion has led her to launch a second shop, Casa Design, in the South End’s SoWa district. Drogobetsky hopes the 2,500-square-foot emporium, filled with limited-edition, sustainable furnishings, will be an inspiration to local designers and architects. Here’s what she’d like to buy from, er, herself.
Zhanna’s parents, Irina and Arkady, founded Italian Interiors in 1989 after emigrating from the Ukraine. Originally, they sold only custom Italian furniture, but after Italian Design opened in 1998, the couple expanded their first store to include full kitchens and bathrooms. Four years later, the Drogobetskys’ other daughter, Yana, launched Bambini Design across the street from Zhanna’s Brookline Village showroom, adding European children’s furniture and accessories to the family’s burgeoning décor empire. B.S.