Designer of the Week is….

Linton Kwok from Fixonic Design and Production hailing from Hong Kong! (We are international folks here on this blog!)

And I must admit, I LOVE what I’ve seen on his site. Classy chic with a modern hint without being extreme. Now here is what we talked about:

The Beginning:

Graduated from Bachelor of Arts in Industrial Design/Interior Design at RMIT Melbourne, Australia, he started working for some of the biggest local architectural firms in Hong Kong. (For example: Wong & Ouyang and Rocco Design.) Then Linton started the business Fixonic in 2008.
(Here’s the site for the business!: fixonic.wordpress.com/)

Design Favorites:

And this makes so much sense. When I asked what was the favorite style design, he answered “Minimal or modern contemporary with lighting also being an integral part of the overall design.”

Does that NOT sound like what I was complimenting earlier? I love it. I completely agree with this and it fits so well.

Trends

When I asked about trends or that he prefers, he answered “Personally, I don’t believe in trends, and prefer to design interiors that are “timeless” so it at least lasts 10-15 years and still looks “fresh”. I do favor environmentally friendly materials and products.”

Now, I love the pictures he has on his site. Take look through his Flickriver Photos. Some of them are SO artistic as well! And now, I share more pictures for the rest of the blog… go visit him! Because he has GREAT taste. Love it love love love it!

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Inspired Design

While flipping through Maite’s site, I noticed that everytime you go to her home page, there is a different picture. So I just clicked on it a few times when this photo popped up:

And it clicked! There’s a rug on eSaleRugs that is perfect for this! (esalerugs.com/22131872)

Why did I pick this one? Well, the furniture reminds me of an Antiqued look, which I find quite beautiful. And when I think Antiqued looks, I remember the Ziegler rugs! And what better than a Ziegler that has a lovely tone of blue that works and compliments the drawer and frame!

Designer Of The Week!

And now, I present to you, Maite Alegre from the UK!

A look that is coming up in the stylish world of Decor, Maite Alegre is one to definitely contact for her hand painted and restored furniture. It gives a “classic French rustic look or elegant Swedish country style,” as said in the Living Period magaine.

How fantastic is that?

Her Start:

She started in 2006, when she created her buisness from a lifelong passion. She handpaints each piece, creating a “vintage, shabby chic effect” and made with thought and love. She can work with just about any type of furniture and special trinkets (As you can see in some of the pictures.)

And the rest, well… I think she describes and talks about it best:

“I take one-off commissions, sourcing items to customise by request as well as restoring and giving new life to pieces brought to me by customers from across the UK. I’ve brought a touch of my striking white charm to the homes of high profile clients including the Duchess of Marlborough for her London and New York residences, as well as Julian Metcalfe the founder of Pret a Manger.

I am proud that this is an ethical business which encourages recycling, upcycling and the reuse of furniture that may not otherwise find a loving home.

I work closely with all of my customers to bring together an idea on budget and to your time-scale.

My Spanish origins influence my work, as do my very British surroundings and a passion for interior design. Like the beautiful wine region of Rioja where I was born, my pieces bring serenity and calm to a room and transform something that may be tired and dated into something truly beautiful – a real talking point.

You may not have heard of me yet, but if you love beautiful things and you are looking to add a unique touch to your home, or just want to spend an afternoon in the prettiest Oxfordshire surroundings, then do come and visit – our door is always open, the kettle boiling and the cake stand laden with delicious treats. ”

EXTRA: Not only can you visit her site, they hold cream tea events where you visit her, enjoy scones and tea and look around her showroom at your own speed! How fantastic is that? (My favorite phrasing: enjoy scones and tea from dainty French china cups and wander around the showroom at your leisure. Isn’t that such a lovely picture painted?)

I think it’s all quite lovely and so ahead of the trend~! They’re becoming BIG as we saw at High Point Show. (It’s a show where major decor places release upcoming trends for 2012 and coming seasons!) They were telling me this style was just everywhere and just working the room! So take advantage and visit Maite Alegre at her site!: http://www.maitealegre.co.uk/

Designer of the Week!~

This week, the designer is the lovely Sandra Korka!

Now, when I first started learning about her,  I immediately she would be interesting: she is contacting me from Greece! Now if that isn’t  fantastically awesome, keep reading. She was an absolute pleasure to write!

How did you start? 

Architecture is the beginning of arts (translation from Greek!), and that is her beginning! She studied Architecture and she absolutely loved it. She had fun while learning her studies, and since it is a broad field, there are a lot of aspects to it and it can be applied to many things.

With this, she chose to work on interior spaces: design and construct (new or old that need renovations). Now how is that for knowing the ins and outs of a business!

Anyway, she truly begins “right after the concrete structure of the building is finished. Then, all parts of the interior are formed and designed, working closely with the clients, as the end product should reflect their personalities, their needs, and requirements for their new spaces.” (Lovely to work with people that you just HAVE to use their wording! Love it! <3) She worded that perfectly and I could not have said it any better.

From there, she still works close with her clients but visiting stores, suppliers, etc. And after all the designing is done and the proper things ordered, the construction begins. She works with a very skilled and knowledgeable crew that she sees daily on the work site. Now, I just HAVE to quote her again (You can see the passion!). “It is up to the client to visit or not. I pay everyday visits on site to supervise the construction works process, as I have to make sure that the design, as well as every technical detail are absolutely followed. I pay very a lot of attention to construction details, as the details make the difference. I may have designed the most beautiful thing, but if it is not made according to the design or caring about finishes, joints, etc, then it does not mean anything and as a result, the client will not be happy. ”

She is there for every detail and every need. It is amazing to hear about and I absolutely love it.

And she doesn’t only deal from the very beginning, she helps with any and every space. Even designs small apartments! She can make any space a designed and beautiful space. Check out her blog, http://www.sandrakorka.blogspot.com/, it shows GREAT examples. Right now she is working on a project that if I talked about, this would be a LOT longer. *wink*

Favorite Design: 

“Contemporary modern. That is, nothing too extreme, simple forms and lines and earth tones that do not wear out by time.” This is her choice, and I see why she would chose it. “I do not always follow this style in my work, as I design a space focusing on the client,” she has told me. “The space [will] reflect the needs and wants of the client, who should be happy to use it and feel comfortable and relaxed.”

Tips and Advice: 

Since she is not a big fan of trends because they fade away after time, she always recommends to “keep simple colors on the basic pieces of furniture and play with the colors and the patterns of the parts that can be changed easily.” (Curtains, rugs, cushions, etc.) “That way, when changing these parts, the space looks brand new and this can do miracles to the psychology of the users of the space in question!” (Yes, that is her wording. Brilliant isn’t it?) She has also mentioned to keep wardrobes and room doors as light colored because they allow the room to breath. They are the bigger focuses and it may be easier to play with that way.

And the other great advice: Trust the person they have hired,” as they are trained and have the skills and experience, as well as know the market. They are on your side. They want to work with you, not against. And I would listen to that great advice. “I always, always, say at the very beginning that they should not listen to what others say, because others speak from their own perspective and with their own background and no matter their good will, things get messy and difficult!” Trust your instincts and that of the one your hired! Together, you will make something great! It is supposed to reflect you after all, not someone else.

My Say:

She DEFINITELY has passion and love for what she does!~ She apologized about how much she had said, and let me tell you, I LOVED every minute of it!  There are a lot I didn’t mention, but it is quite fantastic getting to know her!

Definitely look through her photos, they are amazing. The link to her blog is included somewhere above, and it is worth the visit! Contact her if you can. Definitely worth it.

PS!! She has not only done homes and offices, she has done STORE FRONTS. Like the set up of the store and everything! That is a first for me! And it is quite fantastic.

Designer of the Week!~

And, today, I have chosen for the Designer of the Week, the very first, will be:

Karolyn Stephenson of Town & Country Interiors!

Her Start: She graduated from Rutgers in New Jersey. She received a Bachelors of Science, and minors in the arts. But her passions ended up having her pursue the arts, and she had started her own decorative painting company Holland Brook Designs.

It was there her designer’s intuition started showing. She painted for many interior designers and found herself helping with design advice and assisting in the designing process.

She was then  hired as a design assistant by a graduate of NYSID (the New York School of Interior Design). She apprenticed with her until until the designer went on hiatus to raise a family.

She was then hired by Phyllis Patyk of Town and Country Interiors. Phyllis has experience of over 25 years! It was here that her sister Suzanne joined as well, and they both enjoyed working under Phyllis until she retired in 2008. And now, they are both  current owners of this firm!

Their Style: I believe this is best described by the designer herself: “Eclectic with traditional bones!” (Love it!)

“I love homes with personality, filled with well traveled acessories and a mix of modern and antique.

I feel each home should be a reflection of the client that has been rendered classic by our touch.”

And I couldn’t agree with her more!

Favorite Trends: Ethinic trend (because it really isn’t a trend at all!).

And here is a fun side note! Now, she talked about how well designed and traveled homes dating back to the early 1900’s (quoting her EXACT, she talks quite brilliantly!), there are ethnic influences.  She then mentioned Ikat and Chinoiserie.

Being me and my lack of good designer terms, I had to look these up. LOVE them!

First, Ikat. It is a very interesting design that I never knew had a name! I recognized it the INSTANT I looked it up. (Click on the word to have the definition.) And then I realized, she is ahead of the fashion curve, because it now is selling as well in clothes! anthropologie.com. This lady has good taste.

And she has similar taste to me. Here is the definition of Chinoiserie: a style in art (as in decoration) reflecting Chinese qualities or motifs; also : an object or decoration in this style.

Yes and YES! Love it! I have ALWAYS been that for Asian Inspired decor! Now ends my random side note.

With all that said, she says yes to Ikat and True Asian Antiques!

The advice she gave to me is that she hopes that people today enjoy trends in moderation. We need to really establish our own personal style by mixing periods and styles. Mix and match to find what says: YOU. (Or rather ME, depending on how you are wanting to phrase it.) No one wants to go into someone else’s home and see the same design, sofa, rugs, etc the same as their own. DARE TO BE DIFFERENT! 

And also, by using real antiques and not all new, it is a form of recycling. It’s good in the long run for the environment.

Now for more from me: I had such a good time talking to her! She is fun and such a nice person! And I LOVE the designs I saw on their site! (http://www.towncountryinteriors.net) So if you are int he right area for them, do contact her! I think you will not be disappointed!

And so, I will leave you with more photos, but definitely check our their site for more!