What were your first memories of being interested in the field of design Trudi: I’ve always been attracted to beautiful things and all elements of design from fashion, architecture, artwork and interior design. It has been a gradual progression from appreciating what I see to applying it to architectural space. Wendy: I’ve always loved drawing and sketching and it was a high school drafting class that initially inspired me to continue in the field. We had to design and draft a small house, and from this point I knew my future involved architecture, design and art in some capacity.
You each have slightly different backgrounds. How do they complement each other in your business partnership? Trudi has years of hands-on experience in the construction and project management field, whereas my experience has been predominantly in the design office and most recently, in the academic field as a design instructor. Trudi and I met when she was enrolled in a drawing course for design that I was teaching and we quickly realized that our skills, personalities and aesthetic sensibilities completely align. We draw a lot from each other and when the design is right, we both know it.
Where do you find inspiration for the projects you work on? Most importantly, our first source of inspiration comes from our clients during our information gathering consult. An important part of our practice is to keep our minds and ears open and listen closely to our clients. Inspiration comes from the past, present and future, and in our age of technology, we have access to it all. Not to mention, inspiration for colour palettes and natural materials surround us on our beautiful West Coast.
What advice would you give to someone choosing to work with an interior designer for the first time? Interview a designer for compatibility, have some images of designs that you like to use as a communication tool and have an idea of your budget. Don’t hesitate to speak about money and what you expect from the designer. Don’t feel rushed to choose a designer, you can always get back to them, and it’s okay if it doesn’t work out. Like any relationship, only enter into it if you feel 100% comfortable.
What makes a design project exciting? An unlimited budget is always exciting, but the willingness of the client to think outside the box and have confidence in us to create something truly unique is the most thrilling. We are always up for incorporating design elements that provide that little touch of surprise. We love the flow of a design from one space to another, but to be able to juxtapose a design element is delightful — it provides that little extra to the home that make the owners smile and feel most comfortable.
What rule of interior design is made to be broken? All design rules are made to be broken. We don’t really follow rules per se, but for a design to work it has to fulfill at least a few of the following design fundamentals: proportion, balance, scale, repetition … even if they are used in a very understated way.
Is there an emerging trend in design that has you excited? Caesarstone kitchen countertops that simulate polished concrete look great for an industrial aesthetic. We’re also keen to break free of the all-white kitchen; let’s embrace some colour.
What do you hope your clients will remember most about their experience working with you? That our design captured their true essence and that working with us was a positive and inspiring experience.
Favourite store to discover unique furnishings? Charmaine’s Past & Present