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April 27th, 2017 | Media

What inspired you to become an interior designer?

I come from a family of technically minded people but I always had a creative streak; my childhood dream was to be an architect, like my grandfather! Despite my creative interests I went on to study computer science at University but it wasn’t long before I was drawn to interior design. I started freelancing for clients in Russia and knew immediately it was what I wanted to do. Having grown up in post-soviet Russia, I’m constantly inspired by European design and architecture, even more so now that I live in London.

How has your background influenced your design style?

My Russian upbringing and my technical training have given me two key personality traits: high standards and precision! It’s typical for Russians to be perfectionists and I definitely fall in to that camp – I’m not satisfied until our clients have the perfect result for their homes. My technical background and my drive for precision is also key when it comes to our designs and space planning; I frequently apply this approach, particularly when working on smaller London spaces.

How would you characterise your style?

I try to apply a fresh approach to each design as a lot depends on the architecture of the building and the way the space is going to be lived in. I like to create relaxed interiors with an eclectic mix of mid-century, scandi, industrial and contemporary styles. I steer clear of brash or overly designed spaces, preferring a look of understated luxury.

What’s the future for Russian interior design?

There is a stereotype of Russians opting for the overtly expensive, tacky interiors but I believe there is a new clientele emerging; one that values a more simplistic approach to design that appreciates beauty and functionality. I think our designs cater for this backlash against mindless expenditure. We encourage a more conscious approach to design, working with bespoke furniture designers to help to deliver an interior that provides an emotional comfort.

What’s your view on the future trends for interior design?

I think the negative aspects of ‘fast fashion’ will start to have an impact on interior design and furniture production. People are starting to question rampant consumerism and the related amount of waste. I’m passionate about instilling a long-term view to interior design; I want to create timeless interiors and like to work with clients that are interested in investing in top quality furniture that can be treasured and not just thrown away when trends change.

What’s your approach with new clients?

We are committed to providing a personal approach with each client we work with. This usually involves getting to know them well and finding out how they want to live in the space. I love to go on the journey with our clients, working closely with them to build the perfect scheme. I keep my work-load balanced so I can always give my full attention to each project, right down to finding the perfect light fitting or bedside table.

What are the challenges of designing for new builds?

A lot of new builds have not given enough thought to space planning so I always start with a fresh look at how the space can be structured. I also place a lot of importance on using modern, top quality furniture that is designed for modern living. It’s also important to inject some personality in to new builds so I work closely with the client to dress the space with unusual pieces of art. You can also do wonders with a space by bringing in plants and nature.

What is your top tip for someone looking to make a quick fix to his or her home?

I would encourage anyone looking to update their interiors to get out there and find some of the incredible furniture makers in the UK and across Europe. By investing in a timeless piece of design, you’ll lift your interiors and help support some of the incredible creative talents out there.

Read more information about Black and Milk specialists.

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