Designer in Profile : Noriko Sawayama Creative Director of Noriko Sawayama Design & Associates Ltd. (NSDA)

Name: Noriko Sawayama
Company: Noriko Sawayama Design & Associates Ltd. (NSDA)NORIKO SAWAYAMA PHOTO001
Position within company: Creative Director


Noriko Sawayama, Creative Director, NSDA

BIID Registered interior designer, RIBA Affiliate Member

Award BIID Merit Award 2016

Interior Designer, Design Consultant, Furniture Designer, Lecturer, Interior Journalist

NSDA (Noriko Sawayama Design & Associates Ltd.) is a professional design practice based in London (est. 2000) providing comprehensive Interior Design and consulting services for commercial (Hotel, Restaurant, Spa) and residential projects world-wide. Noriko’s design is often described as Elaborate and Contemporary Zen style. Clients also appreciate her skills on space planning, unique design schemes, and bespoke fixture/furniture design, which were based upon her cultural background and extensive study and skills including Interior Design (Diploma), Lighting Design (Msc.) Soft furnishing and decorative paint (BTEC), Space Psychology, Colour Analysis, Flower Arrangement, and Table top coordination.

She completed a 1200m² new-built pool house last year, and is currently working on a new-built 1300m² house in London. she also works on a large scale commercial project in Ginza, Tokyo


Noriko used to be an established Hotel and Restaurant Management Consultant in Tokyo before her current career. Making good use of her 10-year experience in the industry, she can also provide consulting services for opening projects for hotel and restaurant. Her client list includes the award-winning Saki Restaurant in Smithfield and the Noto Restaurant in the City. She completed the spa design for prestigious Capitol Tokyu Hotel in Tokyo.

Furniture Design

Her extensive furniture and fixture design skill always highly valued in all the projects she completed.

She designed D&DI Award short-listed Chigaidana Cabinet in 2001.

She has also designed a range of furniture ‘Len-yu’ for a Japanese leading furniture company Karimoku in 2009, that debuted at Milan Salone 2010 and was exhibited in 2011, 2012as well.

Both were featured named magazines including World of interiors.

Lecturer and Journalist

She is also much respected writer/lecturer in the field of interior design in Japan. She has published many reports and essays about European Interior Design and Trends over the last ten years, which include trend analysis of exhibitions in London, Paris and Milan. Her deep knowledge of European and Japanese products and trends reflects on her diversity of design.


She has been running a highly regarded college for Japanese interior professionals with unique curriculum that she developed over years of professional experience. The course consists 2 parts; a 10 month part-time Skype lesson, and a 4-week intensive full-time course in London in conjunction with The Interior Design School, which has been granted as a ‘Professional development Diploma’ by British Council.

Charity (founder)

The wallpaper project

Buy J Crafts Campaign
. How would you describe your personal interior design style?
Elaborate and Contemporary Zen style, which is our signature style.
Apart from above our following 4 styles have been appreciated a lot by our clients;
Arty, Bold Zen, Chelsea, and London Family.

. Where does your design inspiration come from?
My Japanese cultural background as well as deep understanding of East and West culture.

. In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense?
Sustainable should be a core value for any form of design.

. Name five key themes to consider when approaching design in 2016 and beyond.
1. Eclectic will be a key skill for interior designer
2. The border line of Design and Art will be fuzzier.
3. Traditional craftsmanship and skill should be valued
4. Space planning is the key element of interior design
5. Architect and interior designer need to work closer for growth of industry
. If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to interior design schemes, what would it be?
You need to consider historical period, region, and culture as the starting point of building a design scheme.

. How important are The International Design and Architecture Awards as recognition of talent and achievement?
Very important as an International platform

. What projects are you currently working on?
currently working on a new-built 1300m² house in London. she also works on a large scale commercial project in Ginza, Tokyo. Design consulting for Japanese leading companies.

. What are your aims and goals for the next twelve months?
to build up a new business model involving interior designers in the Japanese interior market
. Final thoughts; tell us a little more about yourself
Your most treasured possession? Family including dog
Your favourite holiday destination? Provence
Your favourite hotel / restaurant / bar? Blakes Hotel London, Hotel Seiyo Ginza
Your favourite book / film / song? Any classical piece played by Emanuel Pahud (Flutist)
Your favourite food and drink? Sushi, Japanese Sake
Your favourite way to spend an afternoon? (in no more than 25 words)

Very popular long Karaoke lunch/dinner with friends and family (karaoke is installed in my audio system in the living room)
If you weren’t a designer, what would you be? A Conductor
Anything else interesting? Opera singing.