Erla Dogg Ingjaldsdottir and Tryggvi Thorsteinsson, Principal Designers at Minarc, take 5 minutes to talk to us…

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Name: Erla Dögg Ingjaldsdóttir and Tryggvi Thorsteinsson

Company: Minarc Architects

Position within company: Owners and Principal Designers

Website: and



We are a member of The Design Society; view our online profile by following this link:


Tell us a little about your background in design (education, experience, etc)

Principals Erla Dogg Ingjaldsdottir, Assoc. AIA, and Tryggvi Thorsteinsson, Assoc. AIA, derive inspiration from the unassuming, almost austere beauty and otherworldly natural features of their native Island, Iceland, the land of fire and ice. An appreciation for the absence of barriers and respect for open and integrated living spaces have become key elements of each project.

Minarc is an award winning design studio recognised internationally for its unique approach, one which embraces contemporary design, and employs innovative materials and technologies, while adhering to sustainable architectural practices and design standards.

How would you describe your personal design style?
Function above fashon – nature inspired.

Where does your design inspiration come from?
Iceland, nature, science, music, elves and trolls.

In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense?
More functional flow, multi use, open flow in/out allowing the nature to flow in
– stepping away from the cave.

Name five key themes to consider when approaching design in 2013 and beyond
nature, function, multiuse multifunction, less materialism more common sense.

If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to design, what would it be?
Love what you do, and do it with love

What projects are you currently working on?

MnmMOD building techniques, low income homes to high-end residences, another hotel on the way and more fun stuff.

What are your aims and goals for the next twelve months?

Design more…

Final thoughts; tell us a little more about yourself

Your most treasured possession?

  • My parents, husband and kids of course
  • The 3 bullets that were shot when we got married for the 2nd time that we keep. The sign of bullet proof love 😉 That was in mexico.

Your favourite holiday destination?

Iceland – always Iceland and never boring because that is “where everything meets nothing”.

Your favourite hotel / restaurant / bar?

Ion luxury adventure hotel.

Your favourite book / film / song?

The man who mistook is wife for a hat. Song – nothing else matters with Apocalyptica (Rock Cello quartet).

Your favourite food and drink?

Red wine and dried fish (dried fish is Icelandic delicacy)

Your favourite way to spend an afternoon? (in no more than 25 words)

With friends and family by the ocean. Eat cracked crab with white wine. Walk barefoot on the beach and discover the life in tide pools.

If you weren’t a designer, what would you be?

Erla – scientist and Tryggvi – professional soccer player