Student Mentoring Event - The British Institute of Interior Design

I was pleased to have been invited to join the panel of experienced interior designers at the Student Mentoring event hosted by the British Institute of Interior Design. Date: Wednesday, 11th July 2102 Time: 6.00 - 8.00pm Venue: Charles Darwin House,12 Roger St, London, WC1N 2JU Admits: BIID Student members only - Free of Charge

Interior design student mentoring: Life after graduation

Find out more about the event on the British Institute of Interior Design Website.

BIID Collaboration with the AIA on this year’s Charrette

I had the pleasure of taking part in the very first collaboration with the American Institute of Architects (AIA) UK Chapter, as part of my committee responsibilities as Head of the Student & Associate Committee for the British Institute of Interior Design (BIID) A Charrette is a one day competition for 3rd year or post graduate students, and this year the AIA invited the BIID to take part. The BIID invited universities with Interior Design degree courses to bring teams of students to take part in the competition.

Recently held at the Architectural Association in Bedford Square, London, Charrette ‘11 challenged students to explore how architectural form can create both expressive and rich interior spaces to enhance the visitor experience. With the BIID’s support, this intensive, one-day design exercise saw interior design students from British universities taking part alongside architecture students for the first time to compete in designing a new wing to the British Museum.

I also mentored a team for the day, which was a mixed group of Architecture and Interior Design students – which was great fun for me! It was also challenging, keeping a group of people on track and making sure to get the best out of everyone was tricky some of the time. But to work with creative and enthusiastic people is partly why I enjoy my job so much.

At the end of the afternoon each team presented their designs to an expert jury, chaired by Paul Finch OBE, the renowned architectural journalist and critic and Chair of Design Council CABE (the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment). The judging panel also included Graeme Brooker, co-founder of Interior Educators and senior lecturer at the University of Brighton and architect Stephan Reinke, the first President of the AIA’s UK chapter.

The day was fun and energetic and although there could only be one winner, it was the process which was the most important part of the day. Collaboration and the ability to get your ideas across and understood is key in my job as an Interior Designer, and this is what I hope these students took away from the day.

Looking forward to next year already!

Pictures from the day:

The inside of the British Museum - London

The inside of the British Museum - London

Charrette Architecture and Interior Design Competition - London 2011

Charrette Architecture and Interior Design Competition - London 2011

Charrette Architecture and Interior Design Competition - London 2011

Charrette Architecture and Interior Design Competition - London 2011

Interior Design in Austere Times

These are difficult times for families and businesses alike, and you would think that would mean that the time for design has been put on hold. But design hasn’t stopped; it has adjusted with the times. Simplicity, well crafted, understated, elegant and timeless, all are words being used to describe the latest furniture, fashion and interior design. Gone are the flashy, over indulgent, attention seeking designs and instead we have shifted to quality over quantity. I’ve heard the term “slow design” being used quite a lot recently, just like we had the “slow food” movement, design is following this lead. It’s not about cheap furniture or using cheap materials, it’s about purchasing things that you really love and that will last you throughout your lifetime (and possibly your children’s lifetime). It’s a sensible way to look at design, recession or no recession.

Being passionate about design means that I’ve always felt that good design improves and enriches our lives, whether it’s in our homes, businesses or recreation. I have a growing feeling that this recession has meant we designers have had to be cleverer and more thoughtful about the designs we produce, and that can’t be a bad thing!

Some of my favourite Austerity Inspired Designs:

SCP Compass Table by Matthew Hilton

SCP Compass Table by Matthew Hilton

Oak Day Bed by Another Day

Oak Day Bed by Another Day

Time Shelves by Scene

Time Shelves by Scene

Tom Dixon’s Fan Chair with Leather Seat

Tom Dixon’s Fan Chair with Leather Seat

British Institute of Interior Design

I am truly honoured to be trusted with the task of being Director of the Student & Associate Committee for the British Institute of Interior Design (BIID). I have been working on the committee since 2008 and was asked to head the committee earlier this year. Our main task is to give the newer members of the Institute support by providing educational (CPD) and networking opportunities within the industry. For example, the event we organised with Margo Selby last month was a great opportunity for members to learn more about textiles and network together over a glass of bubbly in a beautiful studio. Now that I have been asked to be the Director of the committee, my task will be to represent the Student & Associate members on the board. I will be taking their thoughts, concerns and ideas to the board and our new President, Diana Yakeley. Our committee has already produced a survey to glean information about what these members need most form their committee and Institute, the results will be collected at the end of this month and passed onto the Board and any other relevant committees.

This is a really exciting time for the BIID. Our annual AGM last week showed a united and strong Institute, aiming for and working towards full professionalism in the industry. Educational, government and other construction and design industry professionals are taking notice of the BIID’s leadership and determination to forge a Professional Pathway for the incoming students & associates to the Institute. The Educational Committee has been working tirelessly over the last 2 years to research and formulate a plan and this Professional Pathway is to start its trial phase this Autumn.

The BIID is even getting noticed by outside industry organisations, on a national level. Recently, the BBC called the BIID to ask if Diana Yakeley could give an interview on the BBC News Channel about the collapse of furniture retailer, Habitat. Our expertise and professionalism as an industry, through the BIID, is getting recognised and it’s a very proud feeling to be able to be a part of it!

Here’s to a bright and beautiful future!

Margo Selby, Textile Designer

“It was a really interesting and informative event, presenting the designer's work in such detail and proximity and providing an opportunity to ask questions and talk to Margo.”

This month, we held an event at Margo Selby’s showroom and studio in Bloomsbury for the Student & Associate members of the British Institute of Interior Design (BIID). It was an opportunity for us to learn about Margo’s work in more detail and understand her career path as a textile designer.

Her 3D effect, hand woven fabrics and use of vibrant colour are what characterise her work and it’s this unique look that has won her many interesting commissions. Margo seems to be most happy when working in collaboration, be them interior, fashion, or even ceramic designers. A truly talented and inspiring designer!

“It was great to see the very personable face behind a fantastic, vibrant business. Margo is an understated yet obviously tenacious young lady who is a real inspiration. As a designer, I found her talk very engaging and hope to incorporate some of her fabrics in to my future projects.”

There is always something new, interesting and fun in the showroom to look at (and even buy!) and she has just released her first pattern books for the Interior Design market, so get yourselves down there and immerse yourself in colour and texture!

Find out more at www.margoselby.com

Margo Selby Shop

Contemporary Cushions

Lamp shades with Orchid

Contemporary Sofa designed by Margo Selby

Margo Selby, Textile Designer, BIID event evening

Margo Selby, Textile Designer, BIID event evening

Margo Selby, Textile Designer, BIID event evening