Name: Maren Lundehn
Company: MURRON Interior Design
Position within company: Director
Tell us a little about your background in design (education, experience, etc)
For me, design is all about people. At the heart of my process are relationships centred on authenticity, conviction and understanding. My interest in design and especially interiors developed in my early thirties. You can call me a late bloomer. Previously a midwife in Germany and mum of five, I drew on the interpersonal and organisational skills learned during these years and I realised a few building projects on my own for friends and family. I definitely learned a lot on site and by just doing it. It was a big step to quit my original job and to move with my whole family to UK to pursue my passion, but I wanted to learn more about the principles of the design process. I earned a Diploma from “The Interior Design School London” and became a member of the BIID. After discovering the retail world, I realised that I have to set up my own business with my very own company ethos. Thus MURRON interior design was born, and now I create unique hideaways worldwide for solitude, space and dreaming. My focus is the client and their dream. My commitment is finding and making space in which you can be still and step away from the world.
How would you describe your personal design style?
I am very much drawn to Nordic design principles. My passion is creating considered interiors with a strong sense of simplicity, light and soul. I am always looking for ways to encourage a flow of light throughout a building. White plays an important role in my schemes, because it reflects the natural light the best and functions as such a great blank canvas for art, furniture and everything that happens in a space.
Where does your design inspiration come from?
The creative art of nature is definitely my inspiration combined with listening to the people I meet everywhere in the world. Listening to their needs, their stories and what they are longing for is something that drives my unique approach to design.
In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense?
Less is more! Today, luxury has been redefined with having more time for slow living in environments that are thoughtfully designed and both speak and respond to their surroundings. In times of climate change and sensory overload we as designers need to balance environmental consciousness with schemes that nourish people’s soul. I think we need to respond both to the human’s needs as well as to nature’s needs. Instead of going further and further in terms of visual and technical overloads and following the latest trends, we need to step back to give people the chance to reconnect with themselves and each other.
Name five key themes to consider when approaching design in 2020 and beyond.
Mental and Physical Wellbeing
Functionality and Flow
Longevity and timelessness
Human behaviour in spaces
If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to design schemes, what would it be?
Simplicity is the ultimate in sophistication.
How important are The International Design & Architecture Awards?
This award is so important to encourage diversity, to inspire each other and to give especially small and talented studios the chance to be seen. Involving such a great and international community of designers and people who are interested in design in the voting process makes this award so special.
What projects are you currently working on?
Currently I am creating a family hideaway in Somerset by converting an old vicarage into an airy, informal and intuitive space. In parallel, I found a lakeside cabin in Sweden for a client, who is a passionate fisherman and wants a place in absolute solitude. In the next months I will adapt this shelter to his personal needs.
What are your aims and goals for the next twelve months?
My focus is to further establish my studio, serve my clients to the best standard and connect with likeminded designers, architects and craftspeople locally and globally. Doing this in balance with still being a wife and mum of five teenagers is my aim for this year. (And, of course, winning this special award)
Final thoughts; tell us a little more about yourself and your daily inspirations
Your most treasured possession?
Honestly, I am not that fixed on my possessions. My family and friends are giving me the most important treasures: love, inspiration and community. But if I am forced to name a physical possession, I would go with my Series 3 Land Rover.
Your favourite holiday destination?
Whitsand Bay in Cornwall (these small cliff cabins built in the 50s are both so restrained and luxurious) and Scotland’s wilderness (raw natural beauty).
Your favourite hotel, restaurant & bar?
Hotel Sanders/ Copenhagen (the mix of different atmospheres gives this vintage inspired hotel a real relaxing vibe)
Restaurant Tess de Mar/ Mallorca/Spain (thoughtful design in combination with an innovative and Mediterranean cuisine perfected with extraordinary service)
Skyline Bar 20up/ Hamburg/Germany (perfect starting point for a night out with incredible cocktails, deep house music and an amazing view over the harbour)
Your favourite book, film & song?
Silence In the Age of Noise written by Erling Kagge (exploring the power of silence)
Seven Worlds, One Planet (touching images – a really amazing experience)
Nora en pure: Morning Dew (deep house music at its finest)
Your favourite food and drink?
Spaghetti con trufa and a good Gin and Tonic.
Your favourite way to spend an afternoon?
Having a picnic on an empty beach with my loved ones and spending the night afterwards in the roof tent of my Land Rover.
If you weren’t a designer, what would you be?
I’ve already been a midwife a long time. Believe me- I don’t want to be anything more than a designer.
Anything else interesting?
I changed my whole life and the life of my family including five teenagers to become a designer. I am so grateful that this shortlisting gives me the chance to showcase my work, to inspire people and to share that you can achieve a lot when you follow your own path and believe in yourself.