Name: Blainey North
Company: Blainey North & Associates
Tell us a little about your background in design (education, experience, etc)
My high school art teacher noticed I had been painting and sketching buildings for five years, without a person in sight! I then studied Architecture which is my great passion in life. I don’t really need motivation to keep working in the field as design is really a way of life for me. I can’t imagine doing anything different, it’s just who I am.
How would you describe your personal interior design style?
I strive to create spaces that are unexpected, exciting, rich in meaning and detail and are tailored specifically to each client. I believe luxury is defined by experience. It’s that gasp when you walk into an awe inspiring space, or a sigh when you sit in a wonderfully comfortable couch and gaze around a room thinking “ this is living” . There are really no rules in how to achieve this set of emotions in an interior, however I do know that great design has good proportion, beautiful materials and detailing. I also feel like it is like any amazing work of art, it has a deep concept and that underpins the creation. Luxury is about the execution of this craft and about it being tailored specifically to you, and your wants and desires.
Where does your design inspiration come from?
Each project has its own unique theme and idea which is born from the site, the client and the brief and is often inspired by nature or art. To do this it requires a collective of people to come together with one vision working on disparate parts of the project to enable a consistent whole. I think our firm is unique in our approach to retain that concept throughout every design decision within the entire project.
In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense?
I think we are moving away from minimalism toward a more decorative and individual style of design and expression.
Name five key themes to consider when approaching design in the future:
One- Being unique is always one of my most important motivations in design.
Two- Design for the long term, as I think the world is moving towards buying better quality and making it last, rather than badly built interiors that need to be redone in five years.
Three- Designing for a moveable client. As more people travel, our sense of home is rapidly changing. I think interiors need to reflect this by referencing their location or the particular needs of that space in its environment.
Four- Relationship to others – Our cities are becoming more densely populated, which means living in closer proximity with others. In the same way our sense of privacy is changing with social media and phones, so too our spatial privacy is changing. I believe spaces need to be more considerate of others in the future rather than being internally focused.
Five- Materiality – The materials we build with change all the time and I think it’s important to be aware of these and try and implement sustainable materials that are built to last.
If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to design, what would it be?
Always think of the feeling of a space before you build it. I believe if you can’t feel it, you can’t create it.
What are the key influencing elements at the moment?
I think fashion and art are always important influences in design, however I think the extreme weather patterns we are seeing around the world are quite inspiring and could form the basis for some exciting new design concepts and solutions.
What projects are you currently working on?
Blainey North & Associates’ offices are working on many exciting projects at the moment. A new store concept for the British Fashion Designer Alice Temperley inspired by the mosaic mirror art of Iranian artist Monir Sharoudy Farfamanian; a new hotel in Brisbane inspired by kinetic stage show design; an amazing new waterfront home in Sydney designed to form its own tidal cove; a full floor apartment next to the Opera House inspired by an underwater landscape and the new Crown Spa at Barangaroo inspired by the feeling between consciousness and sleep.
What are your aims and goals for the next twelve months?
I think you can expect the unexpected from our work. I feel that I am personally entering a design renaissance, as I feel creatively awakened in a very different way. Blainey North & Associates have set up an office in London and hope to spend more time in Europe as I absolutely love the energy of London, which was home for a period of my childhood. Our new furniture Collection which marks a departure of style, will also be launched next year.
design et al only work with the world’s leading designers.
If you think you have what it takes to complete in The International Design & Architecture Awards, submit your application by clicking here.