Designer in Profile: Alice Milnes, Senior Interior Designer at VESTA

Vesta have been shortlisted for Interior Design Scheme – UK Award and Interior Design Scheme – Europe Award in The International Design and Architecture Awards 2020.  Read more about Senior Interior Designer, Alice Milnes, below:

Name: Alice MilnesVesta

Company: Vesta

Position within company: Senior Interior Designer                   


Tell us a little about your background in design:
I did Textile Design at the University of Leeds and whilst there focused a lot on textiles for interior use and art installation-style projects. I then went on to do a Masters in Textiles at the Chelsea College of Art and Design where again I focused on textiles for interior use, as well as product design. I then moved into interior styling and found my passion for what I do now.

How would you describe your personal design style?
Eclectic, bold, fun and colourful. I love mixing bold patterns with block colours and textures. I like challenging new ideas and pushing them in a different direction, for example, putting wallpaper on a ceiling instead of a wall.

Where does your design inspiration come from?
I get a lot of my inspiration from artwork. I like to take ideas and base a design on a single piece of art.

It also depends a lot on the brief or client you’re working with. For example, for a recent project I took a lot of inspiration from nature.

In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense?
More sustainability. There’s such a huge drive towards it at the moment in every aspect of life. And it’s not just about sourcing ethical and economic products, but it’s about recycling and selecting products you know you’re happy to live with for years.

If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to design schemes, what would it be?
Make sure the statement and expensive items in your home – such as your sofa and bed – are pieces you want in your home for a while. The smaller things like a painted feature wall or soft furnishings are the things you can be bolder with and challenge more because they’re a lot easier to change. Think about the core pieces you want and make sure they’re what you want.

Final thoughts; tell us a little more about yourself and your daily inspirations:
Films and TV shows really inspire me. A good example is Monica’s apartment in Friends. It’s so iconic. But it’s purple, and when do you normally see a whole room painted purple? You just don’t think about it or notice it, yet it works so well.

Another good example is the film If Beale Street Could Talk. It’s based in the 1970s and features lime green curtains in an apartment. You just don’t notice them because they work so well in the setting and environment. I love the way films push boundaries but as viewers we just accept it because it looks good.

I also love travelling – but not to big fancy hotels and restaurants. I’d rather put a rucksack on and immerse myself in a culture. I love seeing how people in different countries use materials and colours differently to us in the UK and it really challenges how I think about designs.

If you weren’t a designer, what would you be?
I love history and learning about different times and how people lived, so I think I’d be an Archaeologist.

Vesta have been shortlisted for Interior Design Scheme – UK Award and Interior Design Scheme – Europe Award in The International Design and Architecture Awards 2020. 

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