INTERIOR DESIGN TRENDS – 2019

Jan 17, 2019   written by Giulia Adams
Interior design trends for 2019 will continue with the theme of well being in the home and for the planet. What this means for us at Giulia Adams Interiors is that we continue to make thoughtful decisions about every aspect of our work, how these decisions will affect the client and their long term implications. We want to design spaces that are future proof, choosing materials and finishes that will last, commissioning quality workmanship, and specifying furniture and products that will have longevity and can ultimately be recycled. Sustainability for us is about avoiding single use materials such plastic and using reclaimed or natural materials such as marble, stone, wood and steel and sourcing and commissioning high quality items.

We are going to look at the following themes and some inspiring examples of:

  • Natural  materials

  • Gardens and plants

  • Colour and warmth

  • Sustainability 

Interior design trends – Natural materials:

The use of natural materials has always been paramount for us and this includes hard materials such as marble, stone, ceramic and porcelain tiles. We particularly like hand made artisan tiles in  bathrooms as splash backs and shower enclosures. These natural textural finishes provide a welcome contrast to our slick hi tech screen based lives.


For walls we like wall coverings of timber, grass cloth and bamboo. Cork has the benefit if being natural, recyclable and sustainable and has acoustic properties, is waterproof and hypo- allergenic. It can be used on ceilings, walls, floors and furniture. It is a humble yet versatile under rated material. We also like to source reclaimed finishes as these have a patina of time and authentic character. We have used reclaimed marble in kitchens and vintage timber panelling for walls. Rough materials such as charred timber are also popular, Shou Sugi Ban timber cladding can be used for interior and exterior. When using paints we source low VOC paints from reputable manufactures such as Little Greene and Farrow and Ball and can also source Eco paints that reduce odours and pollution, such as Airlite.

Interior design trends – Gardens and plants:

The theme of nature is also reflected in the use of plants inside and gardens as an extension to the house, where we can experience a healing sensual space and a haven from the outside world. Plants can also protect us from pollution, noise and dirt. The colour green is known for is calming and soothing effects and it is an antidote to our turbulent times.


Interior design trends – Colour and warmth:

The colours of nature will also be popular, expect to see warm palettes with a mix of greens and  ochre, grey blues and coral. The use of natural weaves such as wool, boucles, linen, embroidered fabrics for curtains and upholstery will continue to be popular. For flooring wool, jute, sisal and hemp rugs will make a comeback:


Interior design trends – Sustainability:

We are always on the look out for good quality sustainable furniture to use in our projects. We recently supplied a Harley St. clinic with chairs made from 100% plant based renewable resources, the Kuskoa Bi Bioplastic chair. It is made from corn starch and is biodegradeable and recyclable. These are made by Alki an innovative company based in the Pyrenees. Around the Tree are a Portuguese company that  manufacture a solid timber and cork chair based on an original 1950’s cafe chair that is both ecological and elegant. Other natural materials that are on trend, include cane garden furniture, and Lloyd Loom furniture made from woven paper both made by Vincent Shepherd. 



We commission bespoke furniture for many of our clients and this is an important investment in items that should stand the test of time. We are interested in using companies such as Stuart Scott who make fine tailored pieces by hand, that are contemporary, elegant and beautifully designed. We have several suppliers and manufacturers we trust and commission depending on the style of furniture required and the budget available. We think it is worth paying a bit more for furniture which is hand made, high quality and long lasting

Finally it is interesting to be aware of new sustainable materials that are available. Foresso is a sheet product made from recycled Plane trees, it looks like terrazzo  and can be cut like timber. It looks very effective and can be used to make table tops, floors and wall panels. Totomoxtle is another unusual sheet material made applied with laser cut marquetry of veneers made from Mexican heritage corn. This is a process developed by Fernando Laposse and aims to regenerate traditional agricultural practices as well as creating a new craft that generates an income for impoverished rural communities. The product can be used on lamp shades, table tops and wall panels. 

Ultimately we aim to source and implement the right materials and fittings for each project, that suit the clients brief, their lifestyle  and the style of the building. We are not governed by interior design trends but like to stay up to date of new possibilities so we can make each project new and fresh and relevant to our clients. 






REFURBISHMENT – WHAT CAN AN INTERIOR DESIGNER DO FOR ME?

Nov 12, 2018   written by Giulia Adams

If you have a refurbishment project you will be thinking about which consultants you will need to get on board to realise your dream home. You may need an architect if you are carrying out serious remodelling and certainly an engineer to calculate any structural work.
Do you need an interior designer if you already have an architect? And what can an interior designer do for me, you may ask.

There are several reasons to hire an interior designer on a refurbishment project: 

  •  To space plan the interior to suit your lifestyle
  •  Prepare furniture and lighting layouts
  •  To source beautiful long lasting materials and quality finishes
  •  To design the kitchen and bathrooms
  •  To design bespoke joinery and find the best manufacturers
  •  To find unique pieces and supply furniture and fittings
  •  To create a comfortable and elegant home 
  •  There are the finishing touches to supply and install; such as window treatments, art, antiques and family heirlooms. 
  • A professional interior designer will have an understanding of the entire design process and will be able to lead you through it calmly and efficiently. 

What is the best time to introduce the interior designer to the project?

This should be at the earliest possible stage in the project. The interior layouts should be considered as part of the feasibility and we will ensure the plans reflect your lifestyle. The architects have other priorities when designing a building. We will listen carefully to your brief and consider how you will live in the space. We would then produce a concept design including sketches, watercolours, inspirational images, and furniture layouts. We consider how the spaces flow, where the daylight comes in, where the focal points are, what materials will work best, the acoustics, how the lighting will work for different occasions. The concept design can be discussed and fine tuned, to arrive at a style and atmosphere that suits you. Once planning as been obtained we will already understand your brief and have a design direction and be ready to move on to the detailed design of lighting, joinery and finishes. The design development can be carried out before the tender documents are completed and included for the contractor to cost. Once the build starts all the design decisions will have been discussed, decided, drawn up and costed, so that when the contractor is on site there should be no delays. This will save you time and money and avoid stress. When the build is complete we will be able to implement the finishing touches;  source, order and install furniture, fittings and artwork. 

Here are some examples of refurbishment projects on which I have collaborated with clients and their consultants:


COMPLETE REFURBISHMENT OF A LONDON HOUSE –

My client bought a rundown house in South London that required complete refurbishment. We submitted the planning application for a garden extension and loft extension, which were approved. The detail design included the kitchen, three bathrooms, lighting layouts and joinery design. By extending to the rear and filling in the side return a large open plan kitchen dining room and living room were created that opened on to the garden. The style was contemporary and minimal.

Here are some pictures of the completed house:

refurbished london house
Before photo shows the long narrow kitchen.

The extension was designed to be the full width of the garden.
The kitchen was a designed and quotes obtained and we choose a  German kitchen with white matt doors and recessed finger pulls. The work top was in white Silestone .

refurbished london kitchen
















The bathrooms required complete refurbishment. I sourced a range of tiles from stone mosaics for the family bathroom, concrete effect large porcelain tiles to the en-suite shower and marble effect herringbone tiles to the loft shower room:
refurbished bathroom family house
















The loft conversion created a light and airy self contained bedroom, shower room and dressing room at the top of the house.
It included air con, LED lights cleverly concealed in the walk in wardrobe and a motorised blind and a feature silk wallpaper behind the bed:

London bedroom refurbishment















The client was thrilled to have a much larger and more modern house which had also increased in value as a result of the work carried out.


KITCHEN DESIGN FOR A LONDON TOWN HOUSE –

My client had a beautiful Victorian terraced house in Primrose Hill that had been remodelled by a famous architect to create an amazing contemporary space. The rooms were open plan, brick walls were exposed, the floor was polished concrete. It was beautiful! But the interior details just did not work for the client. She was a keen cook and the kitchen did not meet her exacting standards. I redesigned the layout to fit in with the existing plan which had flush fire doors held open on magnetic catches. I was able to explain my ideas with a series of sketches and plans for the client to consider, so she could see the design benefits clearly, here they are;

sketch initial design for  interior design client

















By introducing a separate island extra space was created for preparation. The existing appliances could be reused but the units and worktops were new. Once the layout was agreed we obtained several quotes from different kitchen companies and looked at various colours and materials before choosing a supplier.

kitchen refurbishment london













The advantage of having an interior designer plan the kitchen is the flexibility it gives the client in choosing their supplier. The client was delighted with the results.


SUSSEX RECEPTION ROOM REFURBISHMENT:

I have known this client for many years and have designed two of her properties, one in London the other in Sussex. Her country house was a delightful Arts and Crafts style property which needed a complete overhaul. I designed the dining room, study, family room and large sitting room. They wanted a warm and friendly atmosphere and like rich colours so I presented them with a couple of options:
lounge redesign options for client
I also made suggestions for furniture, lighting and fabrics, including an Italian sofa which was a new departure for them but was the most comfortable sofa ever! The room was quite dark so needed warming up; a palette of oranges, reds, burnt umber and a touch of blue was introduced. There was no storage so I designed bespoke joinery units with mirror inset doors to flank the large end window onto the garden. Other joinery items included; log benches to fit into the inglenook fireplace, a TV stand, sofa side tables and a wall console unit, all in Oak with antique mirror details.

sussex house interior design
interior design for arts and crafts homeThe walls are finished in a linen effect paint finish and the beams are painted to look like Oak to match the furniture. The curtains are a gorgeous silk from Mulberry and the blinds protect the silk from the sunlight as well as giving a cosy orange glow. New wall lights make the room seem higher and brighter and handmade glass table lamps complete the look. I sourced all the items, presenting the client with a comprehensive estimate for approval before ordering and implementing the designs and then overseeing their manufacture and installation.


As an interior designer with many years experience I can see the difference a well designed room a can make to a client’s enjoyment of their home. My wealth of knowledge and technical expertise can make a refurbishment project an exciting and enjoyable process. You can relax knowing that you will get the best possible result.




INTERIOR DESIGN – IS BESPOKE WORTH IT?

Jun 10, 2018   written by Giulia Adams
Custom made staircase Cheltenham interior

Cotswolds interior design – bespoke staircase

As an experienced interior designer with over 20 years of collaborating with clients on their London and country residential interior design projects, I have designed many unique pieces; including free standing furniture, lights and built in features such as staircases or storage. But why do it and is it worth it?

There are several reasons to commission a bespoke interior design item:

  • The space is large and ready- made pieces are too small or just not right
  • It needs the WOW factor and a special focal point or centre piece
  • The client wants a unique piece that no –one else has to enhance their home
  • You want to commission a handmade item from an artisan or artist

There is a misconception that this process should be more expensive than buying ‘off the shelf’. However it is worth considering the following:

  • Buying a piece that is the wrong size or not quite right, means it will only have to be replaced later, so you end up paying twice
  • Furniture and lighting companies that understand quality and attention to detail may offer a bespoke service so their designs can be tweaked at little extra cost
  • By commissioning an a artisan to make exactly what you want you have control of the process and the end result,
  • Local artisans’ overheads are often less than a larger company and savings can be made

I have guided clients through this process many times and have seen the benefits and successful implemention as illustrated by the following examples:

INTERIOR DESIGN OF A NEW HOUSE IN THE COTSWOLDS – A BESPOKE STAIRCASE AND BALUSTRADE 

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