For hot tips on summer style and advice on how to become your own interior designer, read our exclusive interview with Lucy Heathcoat-Amory from one half of design duo Amory Brown. Check out these gorgeous interior home projects too…
You started up Amory Brown in early 2010 with Hannah Brown – how did you go about founding your gorgeous new company?
Hannah and I met when we were working for a high-end interior design company based in Chelsea, following our diploma course at KLC. We immediately hit it off and through working together we began to realise that not only did we appreciate and share a similar style aesthetic, crucially we also found that we had a similar mindset with regards to work and what we wanted to achieve.
I think the biggest challenge you face when starting up is being brave enough to take the plunge. Interior design is an industry where running your own business is a natural progression for many, but it is of course very daunting to give up a regular salary and the experience and backing of an employer and put all the responsibility onto your own shoulders.
The second biggest challenge is to believe in yourself and to persevere when the business seems very slow to get moving. We were motivated by how many people actually seemed interested in us, our style and what we wanted to do; this did not necessarily translate into actual projects immediately, but we kept believing that eventually it would.
Self-belief, as I said before, is very important. If you’re starting up with a business partner it’s a great help because you have always got someone else to help motivate you and also to stay motivated for. Having a strong sense of your company style or ethos is also very important because if you are clear in your direction and vision you will be able to sell that vision to your clients.
What’s the best thing about being a designer and what do you enjoy the most about your day-to-day work?
The act of transformation is a very satisfying thing to be able to do and there is nothing better than creating a beautiful room and seeing the happiness on your client’s face when they first enter it. Your environment is so important to the way you live and the way you feel, and as a designer, you can play a part in transforming your client’s homes and therefore, in a way, their lives.
How would you describe Amory-Brown’s style and what inspires you?
Hannah and I love colour and pattern and we have been so happy to see much more of both filtering back into interior design. We want our interiors to have a depth and richness brought about by combining pattern and colour, old and new and also by using beautifully crafted pieces that have a history in their making.
Be bold with colour. A really simple and cost effective way to give a room a face-lift and to create a different feel and atmosphere is to change the paint colour; springtime is the perfect season to do this. With the days getting longer and brighter we feel like freshening up our interiors and if you don’t like it in a year’s time, you can always try a different shade. Farrow & Ball’s updated paint chart has some fabulous colours to choose from.
Bright clashing colours and large floral prints.
What’s your favourite product of the moment?
We really love the new Ottilie Stevenson fabric collection for Vanners. All of their fabrics are woven in England, which means that they can offer a very bespoke service. It is the most beautiful collection, with a vintage feel that has been updated by the use of colour and scale; you can just feel the history and craft that has gone into the weaving of the fabrics.
What three design essentials could you not live without?
Paint & Paper Library paints – a really great neutral pallet and because they come in varying shades of the same tone it is easy to specify the right shade for your feature walls, ceiling and woodwork.
Ann Sacks Tiles – bringing colour, pattern and texture back into the bathroom with her absolutely striking tile and stonecollection.
Turner Pocock Wallpaper by Catherine Cazalet – stunning yet playful wallpapers with a retro feel.
Visit Lucy and Hannah’s Amory Brown website for more on their gorgeous designs.
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