Designer Touches Ltd have been shortlisted for Residential £1-2.5 Million (Property Value) Award in The International Design & Architecture Awards 2020. Read more about Founder and Principle Designer, Mary Georgiou, below:
Name: Mary Georgiou
Company: Designer Touches
Position within company: Founder and Principle Designer
Tell us a little about your background in design:
My background and education are in fashion. I attended Kingston University where I achieved a BA hons degree in fashion. Soon after I began my career, I established an award-winning luxury designer label which grew into an international brand, stocked in top boutiques and stores including Harrods. After the arrival of my two sons in the early ‘90’s, I turned my creative attention to interior design. I enjoyed the transition from fashion to interiors, as I feel there are a lot of similarities between the two industries. I launched Designer Touches and embarked on my passion of turning houses into beautiful homes. In 1999 I was given the opportunity to work on the full design and execution of a new build mansion, and at that point, Designer Touches turned a corner and we have not looked back since.
How would you describe your personal design style?
I always find it easiest to describe my personal interior design style by comparing it to a women’s wardrobe, in that it is most like cocktail dress code – glamorous, elegant, and classic, with a modern twist. We create designs that stand the test of time and tend not to follow closely the most recent trends or fads that can become quickly outdated.
Where does your design inspiration come from?
I am never off-duty, I am always inspired by my surroundings, whether it be a trendy boutique or a luxury hotel, I take note of anything that catches my eye. I am constantly sending my team images of designs or items that I like via our WhatsApp group. This year has been a challenging landscape for us all. We would normally attend tradeshows and events to source the latest products and trends. However, this has not been the case this year. I feel that the industry has really pulled together to support each other, we have not only built stronger working relationships but also friendships.
In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense?
With the recent lock downs and restrictions our home environment has become more important to us than ever before. Many companies have encouraged working from home for the foreseeable future, so that spare room or kitchen work top has now been turned into a makeshift home office. This set up is ok for the short term but as this period extends people are looking for a more long-term solution. Home offices are at the forefront of most people’s minds and it has never been clearer the impact that our home environment has on our moods, wellbeing and productivity.
Name five key themes to consider when approaching design in 2020 and beyond.
- Home offices – As mentioned above the importance of a well-designed home office has never been more prevalent. Whether the space is used daily or on an occasion, a well-crafted interior can increase productivity, creativity and help eliminate distractions.
- Sustainable furniture – With the recent focus on climate change, especially the impact that plastic has on our oceans, we have noticed a trend towards furniture made using recycled materials or materials that have a lower impact on the environment as well as making use of local manufacturing, saving on transportation and supporting the local economy.
- Embrace Nature – Dulux have recently identified Brave Ground as the colour of the year for 2021, which is an earthy and reassuring colour, providing a background of certainty in a world that has seen unprecedented change over recent times. Coupled with splashes of dark navy and gold, which has been on trend for us for some time now, it will create a warm and inviting space for any room in the home.
- The home bars – With social restrictions still in place for many we have seen an increase in home bars of all sizes. Whether it be a dedicated room or a cocktail cabinet, this is a trend that we see will continue over the coming year.
- Animal prints – We just love, love, love an animal print. Our favourite animal prints in fashion have also found their way into our homes. Start small with just a few accessories to add interest to your room without it being too overpowered.
If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to design schemes, what would it be?
You do not always have to follow the latest trend to have a contemporary, stylish home. Design a room using the style and colours that you like rather than what is in fashion, which can date quickly. Really understand how you use the space and who uses it then you can create a design that is not only beautiful but practical for everyday living.
How important are The International Design & Architecture Awards?
We entered The International Design and Architecture Awards as it recognises innovation and rewards design excellence within the industry. It is fantastic recognition to receive and we are extremely proud to have been nominated.
What projects are you currently working on?
Designer Touches are extremely lucky to be working on a number of very exciting and varied projects including a stunning mansion in St Georges’ Hill. A beautiful large 6 bedroom family home in Surrey. A complete new build and development in Clapham Junction and a magnificent family home in Kingswood, Surrey to name a few.
What are your aims and goals for the next twelve months?
In this uncertain landscape our goals for the next twelve months are to invest in our online and offline presence and to build and grow our existing brand awareness.
Final thoughts; tell us a little more about yourself and your daily inspirations:
Your most treasured possession?
Videos of when my children were little.
Your favourite holiday destination?
I am lucky enough to have travelled to many beautiful places, but I have a holiday home in Cyprus and spend a lot of my spare time there.
Your favourite hotel, restaurant & bar?
The Hotel D’Este at Lake Como.
Your favourite food and drink?
Margarita. My favourite food is Mediterranean, paying homage to my Greek origin.
Your favourite way to spend an afternoon?
If I had the chance to relax I would like to sit and watch a good film with a platter of fruit and maybe some popcorn!
If you weren’t a designer, what would you be?
A musician or artist
Designer Touches Ltd have been shortlisted for Residential £1-2.5 Million (Property Value) Award in The International Design & Architecture Awards 2020.
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