Meet Rebecca Armstrong

From Armstrong Design

Winner of the Mercer School of Interior Design, Apartment Vignette Design Competition

Rebecca graduated from Mercer School of Interior Design  with a Diploma of Interior Design & Decoration, studied at the Collingwood campus over a two year period.

 

BQ Design work closely with Mercer School of Interior Design and sponsored the inaugural Apartment Vignette Design Competition in conjunction with Grant Dorman Interior Products. We are proud to announce Rebecca as our competition winner.

 

Read our recent interview with Rebecca below.

Why did you choose to study Interior Design?

I have studied and worked in Marketing in campaign development and strategic branding so have always loved bringing an idea to life. In more recent years I have renovated a few homes and loved the process and workings with experts in each craft to deliver the end product. My home has provided comfort and a haven to me during life’s challenges so I really want to make people feel comfortable in their homes. It is always a privilege to be invited into the privacy of someone’s home, and work with them to improve the use and feel of their space, for both their own use and entertaining.

Where do you get your design inspiration from?

My designs are inspired from the things I see everyday. It may come from textures on a gum tree, colours in leaves, or a visual line which catches my eye. I have always loved photography so I tend to imagine visually and then research to capture the feel. How a room feels is an important part of my end design.

What was your brief for the Apartment Vignette Design Competition and what inspired your winning design?

The brief was to design a luxurious master bedroom that captured the essence of the client’s travels in Istanbul Turkey. As I have backpacked throughout Turkey in younger days I was pleased to research the contemporary city of Istanbul. Istanbul is a vibrant eclectic and colourful city with so much visual inspiration – from spice markets, the Blue Mosque and even the colours of the Turkish Delight!

As part of the competition, your window setting was brought to life using fabrics from Grant Dorman Interiors and soft furnishings made by BQ Design. Provide an overview of your design.

Istanbul provided a rich palette of colours to inspire a colourful soft furnishing scheme, customised with a mix of textures in plain and patterned fabrics. In my design I used a deep sea blue velvet Casa Mia Manor armchair from Grant Dorman, inspired by the waters surrounding Istanbul. The BQ manufactured lumbar cushion in Bill Beaumont Eaton square amber velvet captures the rich tones of the earth and gold metals often seen in the Grand Bazaar. The cotton floor cushions in Trabeth Chateau and Schumacher Williamsburg fabric provided a relaxed feel utilising Turkish delight reds, ocean blues and aged bronze tones. A tassel trim was added to the floor cushion to provide a reference to the fez headwear frequently worn by Turkish men. The BQ channel quilted throw rug in Schumacher Rain Dance fabric provided an organic pattern of blues, added more pattern on pattern to the soft furnishing scheme. The window treatment of a BQ roman blind in Domain Textiles Izi Taffeta and soft pencil pleat curtains in Izi All That’s Sheer fabric, reflect rich bronzes and coppers of the sun-kissed earth and skin of dry Turkey summers. The room Aged bronze accessories from Husk and lamp from Grant Dorman.

What trends in soft furnishings are you liking at the moment and what fabrics are you enjoying working with?

Although I keep aware of trends I tend to like mixing vintage with contemporary, to reflect the personality of each client. I love natural materials, detailed craftsmanship, mixing textures like linens with velvets, and exploring the wide range of subtle hues within each colour. Currently I tend to lean towards organic and block printed patterns rather than structured geometric designs.

Do you have any favourite designers that impress you with their use of soft furnishings?

All designers can stimulate thought for design whether their style contrast or merge with my own. A few designers that I admire include: Sally Campbell (Sydney) mixes vintage and new textiles with her love of travel, film and art. India Hicks (UK) inspires chic homes mixing pattern stripes and colours with a vintage twist. Robert Stilin (USA) produces warm and liveable spaces with his subtle use of texture and pattern. Tara Bernerd (UK) has a bold sense of colour in both her residential and hospitality design.

What websites, magazines and social media do you like to visit for design ideas and inspiration?

Yellowtrace and Est Living are my go to Instagram/websites. You also can’t beat flicking through a magazine so Habitat, Architectural Digest and Belle are always a great read. I also love an auction house for a vintage update.

Where do you hope your Interior Design Studies lead you?

My studies have ignited my use of materials in both hard and soft furnishings. I have loved the research into the history of design and the use of computer modelling to provide perspectives of each design. I have been fortunate to obtain some initial clients through word of mouth so hopefully the word keeps traveling. And I aim to always keep learning along the way. You can never know too much.

What are the benefits of partnering with BQ Design to manufacture soft furnishings for your future clients?

BQ Design offers such a diverse range of soft furnishings. I love working with BQ Design to manufacture design items unique to each client. Custom designed soft furnishings can really add personality to each room, whether it be a residential, commercial or hospitality project.

Follow the links to find out more about Rebecca:

Armstrong Design, Melbourne
Instagram: @armstrongdesign.au
Email: armstrongdesign.au@gmail.com

MEET SIERRA LAURENCE

 

DESIGNER PROFILE, DECEMBER 2017

RMIT Bedroom Design Award Winner 2017

Each year BQ Design has the pleasure of working with RMIT’s Interior Design faculty in Melbourne. As part of the collaboration BQ conduct student tours of our workroom, provide soft furnishing classroom support literature and samples, participate in RMIT’s mentoring and work experience program and sponsor the annual Bedroom Design Award in conjunction with fabric partner, Marco Fabrics.

The RMIT Bedroom Design Award requires all students in their final year of the Diploma of Interior Design and Decoration course, to design a luxury master bedroom for a middle aged, well travelled couple living in a city apartment while working within a fabric and BQ soft furnishing manufacturing budget.

The designs presented by the students this year were of an exceptionally high standard, making the judging process a difficult task.

We are proud to announce Sierra Laurence as the 2017 RMIT Bedroom Design Award winner. Recently we met with her to discuss her winning design and future plans.

What inspired you with the design of your winning RMIT Bedroom Design Award entry?

For this project I wanted to push my own boundaries and come at the design from a new angle. I wanted to explore how masculine influences could be applied to my design aesthetic. The concept was based on a sunset in the African savannahs during the summer time. Muted hues were used throughout including: greens in deep olive and dry grasslands represented by pale golden threads. Leather and furs bring luxe elements to the space while keeping true to the tribal feel and the setting sun is represented by the brushed brass effect on the walls and lighting features.

Where do you get your design inspiration from?

My inspirations are derived from nature. Exploring the vast diversity of beauty it has to offer creates more curiosity to keep discovering what wonders it has yet to reveal. From the building blocks of life such as Fibonacci’s golden spiral to bold colouring of a Macaw’s feathers, I am constantly in awe of what our planet has to offer.

Why did you choose to study Interior Design?

It came as a natural progression while considering what creative avenue I wanted to take next. I have been passionate about design and property from a young age and knew I wanted to combine the two into a career.

Why do you enjoy Interior Design?

I enjoy developing new concepts and thinking outside the box. Having the flexibility of delving into many branches of Interior Design or being able to specialise allows for a fluidity in creative freedom which only a field like this can grant.

What trends in soft furnishings are you liking at the moment and what fabrics are you enjoying working with?

Although I keep aware of trends I tend to like mixing vintage with contemporary, to reflect the personality of each client. I love natural materials, detailed craftsmanship, mixing textures like linens with velvets, and exploring the wide range of subtle hues within each colour. Currently I tend to lean towards organic and block printed patterns rather than structured geometric designs.

Do you have any favourite designers that impress you with their use of soft furnishings?

All designers can stimulate thought for design whether their style contrast or merge with my own. A few designers that I admire include: Sally Campbell (Sydney) mixes vintage and new textiles with her love of travel, film and art. India Hicks (UK) inspires rel chic homes mixing pattern stripes and colours with a vintager twist. Robert Stilin (USA) produces warm and livable spaces with his subtle use of texture and pattern. Tara Bernerd (UK) has a bold sense of colour in both her residential and hospitality design.

What trends in soft furnishings are you liking at the moment and what fabrics are you enjoying working with?

The movement towards bringing back fabrics like velvet with new technology applied, creates texture and interest. For the Bedroom Design Award I chose a watercolour sculpted velvet by Zinc. Its shapes were a nod to the undulated spots of a leopard. This enabled the viewer to be influenced subconsciously, allowing the primal animalistic elements of the design to take on more subtle layers.

What are your favourite elements of soft furnishings and why do you like working with soft furnishings?

My favourite element would have to be all the textiles that are coming back into vogue. Colours are back and they are bold, mixing prints and textures and creating unique spaces that not only are visually interesting but feel luxurious too.

What websites, magazines and social media do you like to visit for design ideas and inspiration?

Vogue Living is my “go-to”magazine for Interior Design. I love checking out instagram updates on local Australian designers like Christopher Boots and Asaf Zakay. Pinterest is my main avenue at the moment with everything conveniently in one place. With personal images uploaded from all over the globe, it allows us to glimpse a more personal insight into how other cultures design their interiors.

Who are your favourite designers that impress you with their use of soft furnishings?

Kelly Wearstler’s avant-garde designs are favourites of mine. Her business model surrounding soft furnishings is a great example for young designers. Custom designed textiles are used in her pieces, as well as being able to purchase separately. This set up creates versatility, allowing designers to create their own one of a kind pieces to match the furniture. Timothy Oulton’s use of quilted red velvet to line the interiors of his Cumberland pieces brings them to a new level of sophistication and opulence.

Where do you hope your Interior Design studies lead you?

As an Interior Designer I’m most drawn to working commercial projects. Hotels, casinos and apartment complexes are especially of interest. I’d like to one day specialise in designing large scale bespoke furniture and feature lighting to fill these spaces.

My personal passion is to preserve the traditions of master craftsmen and weavers around the world, whose skills in this day and age are dying out. I want to incorporate these ancient techniques into modern designs to create unique pieces. My goal is to create a brand that is fair trade certified and to improve quality of life in these communities.

What are your Interior Design plans for 2017?

Inspired by the likes of Oulton, I have been focusing on designing furniture collections and are currently working on modular furniture pieces that have a sculptural effect. I’m also looking at creating functional artwork that can be used in commercial and residential interiors.

What are the benefits of partnering with BQ Design to manufacture soft furnishings for your future clients?

BQ Design’s hardworking team produce high quality results. Thanks to businesses like this, creating bespoke soft furnishings for clients is simplified. BQ are able to customise and create items to your exact specifications, ensuring both you and your clients will get the desired results.

Follow the links to find out more about Sierra:

Business Name: Sierra Laurence Designs

Email:sierralaurencedesigns@gmail.com

MEET GRAEME RENDLE

FROM GRAEME RENDLE DESIGN

Designer Profile, November 2016

Tell us about Graeme Rendle Design (GRD).

GRD provide total design and decoration concepts for indoor and exterior spaces, starting with the planning stage or adding the finishing touches and from new builds, renovations and room makeovers. We assist with everything from floor to ceiling and in between, including window treatments, flooring, lighting, colour concepts, kitchen and bathroom design or simply adding the right accessories or finding the perfect front doors.

What is your business philosophy?

We always listen to the customer. At GRD we learn about the client’s likes and dislikes and demonstrate our skills in co-ordinating an environment that is exactly right for the client’s lifestyle. We are honest and we remind ourselves that we are the facilitators not the dictators.

Client referral and returning clients are an important aspect of GRD. We have assisted many customers decorate their third or fourth home and many holiday homes.

How did your business start?

My love for design goes back many years. Initially I worked at David Jones in soft furnishings and attended Tafe courses related to colour and design. In the early 70’s I was a student of the Carl A. Schwarz New York School of Interior Design. This two year interior design course was conducted by Diane Williams under the guidance of Carl A. Schwarz and was possibly one of the first international courses available in Australia. Diane Williams has become a very close friend over the years and often enjoys commenting on my current work projects.

In the mid 70’s, after completing my interior design studies and gaining great experience working at David Jones, I joined a boutique family business specialising in furniture and interior design. I later became a partner of this business. This partnership continued until my partner was attracted to business ventures overseas. At this time the business was renamed Graeme Rendle Interior Design. We then later renamed to the current business name, GRD. I must attribute my success to the amazing staff that have supported me over the years. They know who they are. A BIG thank you to them all. It is very much a joy to go to work every day.

I recognise the importance of giving back, and have remained a Design Institute of Australia member for more than three decades. I have taught colour and design and written interior focused articles for the Newcastle Herald in the years past.

What type of clients do you work with?

The whole gammit! From families, commercial ventures to vineyards, holiday homes to hotels and motels, offices and more.

Where do you get your inspiration from?

It could be as simple as seeing a colour, feeling a mood or atmosphere or a thought that comes to mind. My BQ Design rep Elle (who really is an amazing individual) is totally committed and knowledgeable with the BQ products. She would say to me “you must love your work” and I have to admit, I really do. I wouldn’t continue in this field if I didn’t enjoy working with my clients and gaining satisfaction when projects are completed successfully. It’s a nice feeling.

What do you like about your job?

I love the variety of work I do and overcoming the challenges to meet individual needs and wants. But the greatest satisfaction is from happy clients at the end of a project. Every client is different and every project is executed differently. I love this variety.

I am always conscious not to dictate. I listen and then work backwards so we have a start and ideal finish. It’s also important to recognise a client’s budget. A good designer can achieve the right look on a small or large budget.

What exciting projects have you worked on?

GRD has worked, and is still working on a fabulous home in the Hunter Valley Vineyards which was featured in a magazine showcasing the Top 100 Homes in the World. We’ve also worked on an amazing range of projects from residential to commercial, including: hotels, motels, hospitals, churches, a New York penthouse, apartment in London, and a guest house in New Zealand. Nearly all of GRD’s work is referral or repeat clientele which is very special.

Any big plans for you in 2016/2017?

Yes – I have moved my studio to the main street of Beresfield to a shop front with magnificent natural light. The space is very functional and I finally have a place for everything. While my clients need me (and I’m still breathing) I hope I can be there for them, and hence a new beginning and new studio has been created.

What soft furnishing projects are you currently working on?

We are mainly designing and installing curtains, bedspreads, roman and bonded blinds. I am very impressed with ripplefold (S-fold) curtains at the moment. They suit both contemporary and traditional homes.

We are also using alot of textured fabrics in our designs. They are really popular and are accentuated when combined with natural look fabrics in plains or patterns. Fabric is a wonderful source of inspiration.

What are the benefits of working with BQ?

I could rave on about how fabulous the product is and how it always arrives in beautiful packaging but it’s the team at BQ that are fantastic to work with. From Sabrina at reception who is always happy and efficient, to my fantastic NSW based rep Elle, to the customer service team who go out of their way to assist, and I must mention the amazing Prem that provides great production knowledge. Another of my favourites at BQ is Sheila who now only works Fridays so I often save my calls for that day.

Find out more about GRD:

Showroom:
3B Beresford Avenue
Beresfield NSW 2322
Postal address: PO Box 225 Beresfield NSW 2322
www.graemerendledesign.com
Email: graeme@grdesign.net.au
Phone: 02 4964 2190 Mob: 0429 683 356 Fax: 02 4964 2185
ABN: 78 128 232 085

MEET VIRGINIA POLENDAKIS

DESIGNER PROFILE, DECEMBER 2016

RMIT Bedroom Design Award Winner 2016

Each year BQ Design has the pleasure of working with RMIT’s Interior Design faculty in Melbourne. As part of the collaboration BQ conduct student tours of our workroom, provide soft furnishing classroom support literature and samples, participate in RMIT’s mentoring and work experience program and sponsor the annual Bedroom Design Award in conjunction with our new fabric partner, Marco Fabrics.

 

The RMIT Bedroom Design Award requires all students in their final year of the Diploma of Interior Design and Decoration course, to design a luxury master bedroom for a middle aged, well traveled couple living in a city apartment while working within a fabric and BQ soft furnishing manufacturing budget.

 

The designs presented by the students this year were of an exceptionally high standard, making the judging process a difficult task. We are pleased to announce Virgnia Polendakis as the winner of the 2016 RMIT Bedroom Design Award prize for her outstanding design.

 

Recently we met with Virginia to discuss her studies, winning entry and future plans.

What inspired you with your winning RMIT Bedroom Design Award entry?

I have studied and worked in Marketing in campaign development and strategic branding so have always loved bringing an idea to life. In more recent years I have renovated a few homes and loved the process and workings with experts in each craft to deliver the end product. My home has provided comfort and a haven to me during life’s challenges so I really want to make people feel comfortable in their homes. It is always a privilege to be invited into the privacy of someone’s home, and work with them to improve the use and feel of their space, for both their own use and entertaining.

Why did you choose to study Interior Design?

Interior Design has been a passion of mine since I was 17. I never thought to pursue it professionally until now. I originally studied as an accountant, protecting my passion. But when you are destined for something, it will somehow come and find you!

Interior Design gives me a deep feeling within. It makes my heart expand and to me iti is a sign that it is my truth. It gives me the opportunity to create an environment or space that the client imagines but can’t create themselves.

Why did you choose to study Interior Design?

Interior Design has been a passion of mine since I was 17. I never thought to pursue it professionally until now. I originally studied as an accountant, protecting my passion. But when you are destined for something, it will somehow come and find you!

Interior Design gives me a deep feeling within. It makes my heart expand and to me iti is a sign that it is my truth. It gives me the opportunity to create an environment or space that the client imagines but can’t create themselves.

Where do you get your inspiration from?

Inspiration comes from everywhere, everything and everyone. It could be a quote I read in a book or magazine that may have allowed me to think about something from a different perspective. Travel provides fresh ideas. Philosophy where all of wisdom is found. nature where miracles unfold everyday.

What trends in soft furnishings are you liking at the moment and what fabrics are you enjoying working with?

Soft furnishings are the magic ingredient that turn a house into a homes. They give a home soul and character and are part of a design that can be easily changed as often as one likes or as much as one’s budget allows.

It’s a lot of fun mixing patterns, texture and colour and when thoughtfully considered and brought together they can truly make a space look amazing.

I find the application of technological advancements in fabrics fascinating. For example the adaptability and versatility offered with digital fabric printing. Customised items including wall coverings, window treatments, carpet, upholstery and bedding are now possible, making design more responsive to creative demand.

I also adore working with handmade Belgian linen. It is breathable, natural and durable. For window treatments, the soft nubby texture gives a warm relaxed look to a room.

What websites, social media and magazines do you follow?

I enjoy reading Inside magazine, artichoke and Vogue Living. On Instagram I follow Fiona Lynch, Clare Cousins, Megan Hess, yellowtrace, Flack Studio, Mim Design Studio.

Who are your favorite designers that impress you with their use of soft furnishings?

Some designers I love are: William Morris, Sister Parish, Vincente Wolf, Marcel Wanders, Tricia Guild, Christian Lacroix and Greg Natale.

Now that you have finished your Diploma, what are your plans?

I have enrolled to study a Bachelor Degree of Interior Design with honours at RMIT. I also hope to get a part-time job in an architectural or interior design studio while I study.

What are the benefits of partnering with BQ Design to manufacture soft furnishings for your future clients?

The interior designer is assured quality of workmanship, service and minimal product lead times. BQ has special equipment that gives them the ability to manufacture to the client’s exact specifications allowing a broader sense of creativity to be explored.

Follow the links to find out more about Virginia:

Business Name:INUKSHUK dESIGN

Website portfolio: s2109453.wixsite.com/virginiapolendakis

Email:nvpol@optusnet.com.au

MEET BELLE AND TIM CHADWICK

FROM CHADWICK DESIGNS

Designer Profile, July 2016

Tell us about Chadwick Designs.

We provide expert window furnishings advice and installation to interior designers, architects and home owners. We’re either working with the client to find the best solution for their space or we are given a detailed design brief and we make it happen.

We specialise in curtains, blinds, shutters and external window and shade products but have a soft spot for curtains. The way they can completely change a room is so satisfying. There is a real art to perfect curtains from: fabric selection, lining combinations, pleats, hardware, measuring, making and installing. We work hard to ensure all these components come together flawlessly and the client is wonderfully satisfied.

Chadwick Designs recognise that selecting window furnishings is an important decision for the client. Some of our favourite clients are those that waited and saved up just to work with us. Although they may sometimes be small jobs, they are incredibly rewarding. Window furnishings are pretty permanent and although we walk out of the house after the install, our work remains a big part of the house for a long time. We take every job very seriously.

Our aim is perfection – with perfect finishes, perfect measuring, perfect making and a perfect install.

Where do you get your inspiration?

Thank god for the internet! We are addicted to Pinterest, Instagram and Houzz and have subscriptions to all the major interior magazines that we pour over late at night. The interior designers and architects of Canberra are also incredibly inspiring. In a small market like ours, the need to be creative with new ideas is paramount.

What do you like about your job?

Every job we complete is different. We have young first home owners wanting to make their space their own and experienced designers specifying particular finishes in wonderfully luxurious homes. We are also involved with commercial jobs for offices and design spaces. This variety of work is exciting and rewarding. Every job brings new challenges and opportunities.

We also love the relationships we build with the interior designers, suppliers and end users we work with. Canberra is a wonderful word of mouth network and I relish the planning, building and expansion of our brand.

We also love the freedom of small business. We can work a 60 hour week but we can still collect our two small children from school and enjoy plenty of time playing with them. We also get to work together. Tim’s commitment to perfection is inspiring and driving. We sometimes drive each other mad and work can be inescapable but it’s also enjoyable and worth it. Interior Design has endless possibilities and we are both fortunate to be part of this great ride.

What plans do you have in 2016?

We have huge plans! We have just opened a new showroom in Fyschwick. Belle has opened another business, a fabric agency, giving Canberra access to the best fabrics in Australia. It’s extremely exciting to “up the anti” in the A.C.T. It’s such fun to work with clients and see their face beam when we find the perfect soft furnishing combination.

Our team is growing at a mind boggling rate. We are surrounding ourselves with the best in the business which is so exciting. Stay tuned as we grow and grow!

What have you been working on recently?

We recently finished a project we worked on for over 12 months. It’s an incredible house that has been nominated for House of the Year in the A.C.T. Architects Awards. This project was particularly rewarding as the client was so wonderful to work with. We planned and designed a retractable sunroof next to the lap pool, motorised roller blinds throughout the house and incredible linen curtains in the bedrooms. The house is amazing. Serious house envy here!

We have also had the privilege of working with a local non for profit, Karinya House. For the last 29 years, they have offered support and accommodation for vulnerable pregnant women and mothers with newborns. We were able to donate the window furnishings, and soft furnishings to their new $4.45 million purpose-built complex. They do an incredible job in making the world a better place and we are very lucky have gotten to know them all. A huge thank you to BQ for partnering with us to lend a helping hand.

At the moment we are working with a big local designer we have been keen to collaborate with since we opened our business. They are building a family home and decorating it with the most exciting fabrics and finishes. We are installing enormous drops of netted sheer curtains, commercial sized motorised blinds, acoustic theater curtains, bright kids rooms and more. We love working with people who aren’t afraid to try something different.

What current trends in soft furnishings and fabrics do you like?

We are loving quilted fabrics at the moment, especially those from Febrik. They are brilliant on bedheads. The chill of a Canberra winter makes you want to bunker down and snuggle into a beautiful bed.

The gorgeous handcrafted fabrics from Utopia Goods are also irresistible. Their designs speak to the soul and we’re busting to include them in our own house.

What are the benefits of partnering with BQ Design?

BQ Design are complete pros. When we visited their business we were blown away with the knowledge, standard and professionalism. When your entire business is based on bespoke and customised products, working with a team who produce quality work is the most important factor. We are proud to work with BQ from the admin team, workroom staff, our gorgeous rep and everyone in between – it’s always a pleasure.

Follow the links to find out more about Chadwick Designs:

Ground Floor, 9 Lyell St Fyschwick ACT 2609 www.chadwickdesigns.com.au

Email: sales@chadwickdesigns.com.au
Phone: 0410 532 285

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MEET SUZANNE CUNNINGHAM

FROM ONE GIRL INTERIORS

Designer Profile, June 2016

After working in a corporate marketing role at a major bank, Suzanne undertook a career change to utilise her creative strengths and follow her passion and experience with renovations and decoration. Now she operates a successful interior design and styling business, One Gir Interiors, servicing Melbourne and regional Victorian clients.

We recently met with Suzanne to discuss her business and current projects.

TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF AND YOUR BUSINESS.

One Girl Interiors work mainly with residential clients on projects that vary in size from large projects such as renovations and extensions to a single room revamp or small decorative-focussed project. Soft furnishings are an extremely important part of my business, with the ability to really transform a space.

With my designs, I always aim to reflect the personality of the people that live in the home and ensure their unique stamp is applied. Being a mum to two young children, also means practicality is an essential component to my work, It’s not enough that a space looks beautiful in a photo. It must be functional and a pleasure to use every day, for the people that live there.

What are some of your recent work highlights?

Since starting One Girl Interiors, I’be been so fortunate to work with some wonderful clients and very inspiring and creative people including stylists and photographers.

I’ve worked on some amazing homes and a number of holiday/weekend rentals including our own personal project in Daylesford, The Weekender (www.theweekendersaylesford.com.au).

Also I’ve been thrilled to have my work featured in The Design Files and it was incredibly exciting to have our renovation in Daylesford featured on the cover and within the October 2015 edition of Inside Out magazine. It truly was a dream come true. The project has also profiled on Houzz and in the Herald Sun newspaper.

What do you like about your job?

I love the creativity of my job. Coming from a corporate background. I love the freedom of working for myself, not working in an office and being out and about constantly meeting with clients and suppliers. Every day is different and I love that. I’m continually learning especially from the trades and suppliers I work closely with.

I’m also fortunate my job enables me create a flexible work environment so I can spend time with my young family.

Where do you get your inspiration from?

Art and film are two favourites. I always notice the interiors in films and I took some inspiration from Diane Katon’s kitchen in the film ‘Something’s Gotta Give’ when designing the kitchen in my home over eight years ago. I still love it.

Travel is also inspiring. My husband Adam and I lived in London for two years and tere are many British designers that inspire me. Kit Kemp and Abigail Ahern would be two that stand out for me. With two young children (Grace, 6 and Tom, 4) overseas travel has been limited in recent years but this is something I’m really looking forward to as they get older.

What are you working on at the moment?

I’m busy working on a number of great projects. They include a large scale renovation and extension in Melbourne, renovations in Trentham and Hepburn Springs and some decorative projects in Melbourne.

What current trends in soft furnishings and fabrics do you like?

Many of my projects include soft furnishings, especially curtains which clients like to use to soften a room. with customers often installing curtains often curtains and blinds. Custom scatter cushions can add a bespoke, unique feel to a space.

I love working with the relaxed, natural feel of linen. Tactile fabrics like velvet and felt are also favourites.

I’m all for luxury but I don’t often go for formality.I like spaces to feel relaxed and welcoming.

What are the benefits of partnering with BQ Design?

Low stress and a top quality result every time.

What are the benefits of partnering with BQ Design?

BQ Design are complete pros. When we visited their business we were blown away with the knowledge, standard and professionalism. When your entire business is based on bespoke and customised products, working with a team who produce quality work is the most important factor. We are proud to work with BQ from the admin team, workroom staff, our gorgeous rep and everyone in between – it’s always a pleasure.

Follow the links to find out more about One Girl Interiors:

www.onegirlinteriors.com.au
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Email: hello@onegirlinteriors.com.au
Phone: 0431 603 913

MEET CARMEL GIBSON

FROM CARMEL INTERIOR DESIGN

Designer Profile, April 2016

Carmel Gibson has often been described by her clients as being like a chameleon, with an innate ability to interpret and integrate their personality into the various interior design concepts she creates.

Carmel believes in providing her clients with “old fashioned” personalised service, ushering them through the entire decoration experience. Whether it is from the ground breaking moment of building a new residence to renovation or refurbishment, Carmel always concentrates on connecting with her clients’ needs.

Recently we met with Carmel and discussed her business and interior design expertise.

TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF AND YOUR BUSINESS.

“I started some 30 years ago working at the then well-known, Mackie’s Department Store in Newcastle, NSW. At the time, the store was highly regarded as an exclusive source of quality furniture, carpets and soft furnishings” said Carmel.

 

“During my years at Mackie’s I learned the basics in all aspects of interior design directly from the professionals. I was inspired to extend my knowledge and undertake formal study. I soon achieved professional qualifications and earned recognition as a Member of the Design Institute of Interior Design.”

 

In 2001, Carmel opened her own interiors business with a boutique-consulting studio now at Wallsend, showcasing unique fabrics, furnishings and contemporary wallpapers.

 

In the 15 years since establishing CarMel Interior Design, word-of mouth referral has generated a loyal clientele in the corporate, commercial and residential sectors.

 

Carmel’s role is diverse; from a project manager donning a hard hat onsite, to escorting clients to Sydney or Melbourne sourcing exotic or designer furniture through her many exclusive connections.

What are the benefits of using an Interior Designer?

Carmel prides herself on the magnificent custom home furnishings she designs and provides to her clients to include: curtains, bedspreads, roman blinds, upholstered bedheads, pelmets and wall panels just to name a few. Over the past 25 years, Carmel has established a wonderful working relationship with BQ Design, receiving support with quoting and manufacturing of wonderful soft furnishings for her clients.

What are the benefits of partnering with BQ Design to manufacture soft furnishings?

Carmel prides herself on the magnificent custom home furnishings she designs and provides to her clients to include: curtains, bedspreads, roman blinds, upholstered bedheads, pelmets and wall panels just to name a few. Over the past 25 years, Carmel has established a wonderful working relationship with BQ Design, receiving support with quoting and manufacturing of wonderful soft furnishings for her clients.

Follow the links to find out more about Carmel and CarMel Interior Design:

www.carmelinteriordesign.com.au

Studio Address:
Loft Studio, 6 Bean Street, Wallsend NSW 2287

Phone: 0419 254 008 or 02 4955 0500

Facebook: www.facebook.com/carmelinteriordesign

Email: enquiry@carmelinteriordesign.com.au

MEET PAIGE GANNON

RMIT BEDROOM DESIGN AWARD WINNER

Designer Profile, February 2016

Each year BQ Design has the pleasure of working with RMIT’s Interior Design faculty in Melbourne. As part of the collaboration BQ conduct student tours of our workroom, provide soft furnishing classroom support literature and samples, participate in RMIT’s mentoring and work experience program and sponsor the annual Bedroom Design Award in conjunction with fabric partner, Zepel Fabrics.

The RMIT Bedroom Design Award requires all students in their final year of the Diploma of Interior Design and Decoration course, to design a luxury master bedroom for a middle aged, well traveled couple living in a city apartment while working within a fabric and BQ soft furnishing manufacturing budget.

The Design and Decoration Diploma students graduating in 2015 showed exceptional talent and capability with their designs, making the judging process a difficult task.

Introducing Paige Gannon

Paige Gannon was awarded the 2015 RMIT Bedroom Design Award prize with her luxurious design entitled “Jungle Elements”. Paige’s design incorporated a rich colour palette with a combination of floral, plain and striking black and white tribal patterns. The bed setting featured a quilted BQ padded band bedhead and corner pleated valance both in a teal velvet, a range of european cushions, pillow cases and bolsters, a floral throw rug and a quilt cover cleverly designed with cordless piping to hide fabric joins. The window furnishings included a sheer ripplefold curtain adding softness to the room and a customised roman blind with emerald band on three sides. Paige’s ability to incorporate a range of clever soft furnishing designs and beautiful fabrics, whilst keeping to the budget, made her a worthy winner.

Recently we met with Paige to discuss her studies, winning design and future plans.

What inspired you with your winning RMIT Bedroom Design Award entry?

The master bedroom draws inspiration from the depth of the Jungle. I fell in love with the Metamorphose painterly floral print fabric from Zepel Fabrics and developed a concept around its essences. I wanted to create a space that provided an escape for its occupants and was reinvigorating through a rich palette and pattern.

Why did you choose to study Interior Design?

My first degree was a Bachelor of Design, majoring in Visual Communication. After I graduated I found myself itching for a more hands-on creative outlet. Influenced by my childhood surrounded by constant renovations of the family home I fell in love with collating fabrics, textures and colours to express my personality and ideas through my environment. Interior Design feels like a natural progression in my design journey.

Where do you get your inspiration from?

My work is inspired by my everyday life, the people I admire and my love for colour and patterns. The initial stimulus for each project begins with the client’s brief then I inject my personal perspective into the process. I have been fortunate enough to do quite a bit of traveling throughout my studies. In those travels I find inspiration everywhere I look. I have seen the masters of fine art and architecture both in Europe and America. Highlights include the magic and fantasy of Gaudi’s architecture and recently the work of Henri Matisse and the Cut-Outs exhibit at MOMA in New York. Living in Melbourne I also get swept up by the buzz of the local design community filled with inspiring talented people.

Who are your favorite designers that impress you with their use of soft furnishings?

I am a huge admirer of Kelly Wearstler and her approach to soft furnishings and everything she does. Her designs appeal to the graphic designer in me as they tend to have bold graphic elements.

What websites, social media and magazines do you follow?

I am an avid Instagram and Pinterest user, I can spend hours scrolling different designer’s feeds, I have discovered so many talented people and inspiring images on these platforms. I subscribe to a few different blogs, I like to keep up with the design community at large not just interior design. I do love The Design Files with it’s focus on local design heroes and in contrast monocle 24: Section D a podcast on design from around the world.

Now that you have finished your Diploma, what are your plans?

I’m currently freelancing as PG Designs, but looking for full or part-time work. I am very passionate about design and can’t wait to make my mark in the industry.

What are the benefits of partnering with BQ Design to manufacture soft furnishings for your future clients?

BQ Design were a fantastic partner for this project, the staff were extremely knowledgeable and accommodating answering any questions I had. The products range is flexible and dynamic allowing me the creative freedom as a designer to put together, what I feel, is a beautiful bespoke space.

Follow the links to find out more about Paige and PG Designs:

www.paigegannon.com

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/paigegannon/

Email: info@paigegannon.com

MEET FIONA SHAKESPEARE

FROM SHAKESPEARE DESIGN

Designer Profile, August 2015

For over 10 years Fiona Shakespeare has provided exceptional interior design consultancy to her NSW based residential customers.

Her business, Shakespeare Design is located in Sydney and specialises in creating individually tailored spaces that reflect her client’s personal style. She aims to inspire her clients with new looks that will stand the test of time.

Fiona’s business philosophy is to focus on working in areas she loves and developing genuine relationships with her clients. That’s how the best results are achieved with each project she undertakes. She is always striving to grow her skill and knowledge base across different product areas.

Read our interview with Fiona below.

HOW DID SHAKESPEARE DESIGN START?

I had always loved art at school and came from an artistic family who taught me to experiment with colour and to follow my heart rather than be slave to fashion. We had burnt-orange walls in our lounge room when I was growing up! I also learned from my artist grandparents to find beauty in the imperfections of objects whether old or new, expensive or cheap and cheerful. After a corporate career, I decided to change to a new career that gave me a chance to be creative and work on a project based from home. I’ve been re-arranging furniture and collecting fabric since I was a kid, so interior design was the natural fit.

WHAT TYPE OF CLIENTS DO YOU WORK WITH?

Most of our clients have either just purchased a new home, are renovating or want help furnishing a room they have never been entirely happy with.

WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR INSPIRATION FROM?

I love seeing beautiful products from around the world being used in new ways on social media, especially Instagram. I also get inspiration from old films – the apartment in Hitchcock’s “Rope” is to die for! The best source of inspiration though, is to go out and interact with other people and places whether it’s travelling, going to markets, galleries, hotels and restaurants or just hitting the shops.

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WHAT DO YOU LIKE ABOUT INTERIOR DESIGN?

I love that trends in interiors are constantly changing and there are so many beautiful and innovative products and fabrics coming on the market all the time. But I also love classic looks and incorporating them into a scheme. It overlaps with my other love – clothing and fashion. The best projects are the ones where I can develop a strong working partnership with a client where we can both share candid opinions and ideas and achieve a result that is beautiful and functional.

WHAT PROJECTS HAVE YOU RECENTLY BEEN WORKING ON?

I worked on a lovely little holiday house at beautiful Palm Beach on Sydney’s northern beaches recently. I’m also proud of the work I did on a menswear boutique ‘The Man Next Door’ in Balmain with the very talented owner Leanne Carter-Taylor. Throughout this year I’ve really been focusing on collaborating with other design professionals and stylists and have consequently worked on some great projects and met some wonderful people. I’ve also recently had two projects photographed for upcoming editions of Australian House & Garden and Modern Homes so I’m looking forward to seeing those publications.

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WHAT TRENDS ARE YOU LIKING IN SOFT FURNISHINGS AT THE MOMENT?

I really like boucle for upholstery as it hides the dirt and is cool in summer and cosy in winter. I’m also using leather on dining chairs and of course lots of lovely sheer linens that are still so functional in most homes.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF PARTNERING WITH BQ DESIGN?

I love the efficiency, reliability and quality of BQ’s work. And I’m always so grateful when I can pick up the phone and Rebecca or Lorraine are there to help me with my questions!

Follow the links to find out more about Shakespeare Design:

MEET LAURA GREEN

WINNER OF RMIT’S SOFT FURNISHINGS PROJECT, NOVEMBER 2014

Designer Profile, December 2014

Each year BQ Design work with RMIT Melbourne and Zepel Fabrics to facilitate a soft furnishing design project for students in their final year of RMIT’s Diploma of Interior Design and Decoration two year course.

The project requires students to design a stylish bedroom for a client, featuring BQ Design products and using Zepel Fabrics.

Introducing Laura Green

During the project period, students receive soft furnishing design, manufacturing and installation advice from BQ Design, Zepel Fabrics and the RMIT teaching staff and they attend a comprehensive tour of the BQ Design workroom.

The illustrated designs are judged based on the student’s level of creativity and styling, product and fabric knowledge, attention to detail, costing calculations and suitability for online publication.

The top five designs are presented to a panel of judges, with the winning entry brought to life. BQ Design manufacture the winning design using the chosen Zepel Fabrics and display and professionally photograph the winning entry in our Notting Hill showroom.

We are proud to announce the 2014 RMIT soft furnishings project winner is Laura Green.

Laura created a stylish contemporary bedroom setting using BQ Design bedhead, curtains, quilt, pillows, throw rug, cushions and bolsters using a range of Zepel Fabrics. Laura’s colour scheme was based on Pantone’s colour forecasts for the coming season. She explained to the judges she “wanted to design something contemporary and luxurious, but with a fun playful side.”

WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR INSPIRATION FROM?

Laura looks forward to working in the design industry and learning from her colleagues. She is particularly interested in working with small spaces, making them functional and more appealing and admires the work of Clare Cousins Architects.

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WHAT DO YOU LIKE ABOUT INTERIOR DESIGN?

Laura told BQ Design “it’s the combination of creativity, problem solving and the methodical, practical side of design that keeps both sides of my brain happy. I enjoy working with spatial planning and layouts and designing custom pieces that offer functionality.”

WHAT PROJECTS HAVE YOU RECENTLY BEEN WORKING ON?

Laura showed us some of the other amazing designs she has been working on while studying at RMIT, including a hotel with men’s business shirts hanging from the ceiling and a contemporary cool apartment.

We wish Laura well in her career as an interior specialist and thank her for her support and commitment to the soft furnishing project.