Interior Designers Interview, bedroom design by Peter Stasi

Exclusive Interview with Interior Designers Peter Stasi and Tabata Galvao

When decorating it can be hard to find the right style and still produce a practical space. Often we look to magazines, television shows and the internet for inspiration. But achieving stylish practicality is much harder and more time-consuming than many think!
That’s why there is immense value in hiring an Interior Designer.

Interior Designers are experts at producing both visually appealing and practical spaces for homes, offices, commercial spaces and more. Not only must they design beautiful and practical spaces, but Interior Designers must be able to effectively communicate your ‘individual’ style all within a relatively short timeframe.

We’ve been fortunate enough to interview two exceptional Interior Designers this week. Both with their own individual style, influences and experiences. Giving you a better idea of how to renovate and decorate to perfection! These exclusive interviews into how each Designer works will give you some useful tips for your next project!

PETER STASI

 

Brisbane Based Interior Designer; Peter StasiPeter Stasi’s Interior Design Career spans over an astounding 25 years. His beginnings as a Visual Merchandiser to Home Styler with Myer, to an Interior Designer with David Jones, his experience led him to open his own store with his own designs, where he was then invited by Trisha Guild to open a Designers Guild concept store. From his time with Designers Guild his ‘Convo Chair’ design was a finalist at the Vivid Furniture Awards in Sydney, also featuring in the first series of ‘My Restaurant Rules’ in the ‘Greedy Goose Restaurant’.

Award-winning Convo Chair in red, designed by Peter Stasi

Since moving to Queensland, he has worked with the likes of Robertsons as a Senior Interior Designer with Labels such a Ralph Lauren Home, Century Furniture and Barbara Barry. When asked about what led him to become an Interior  Designer, its clear Peter has always been passionate about the Industry and ‘how important our surroundings are to our life and our wellbeing’.

Where did you learn the skills you now have?

“My very first experience was in my early 20s when I took on the challenge to renovate and restore my parents home which then became our family home. Built in 1889 my Grandparents were only the second owners, the first being the English immigrant builder who built the home. It took many months of research and hard labour to turn this neglected home into the jewel it now is.”

What makes you’re approach to Design Unique?

“I have finally taken the plunge and now work for myself, filling a gap in the market that I saw. I guess I am a combination of an Interior Designer and Personal Shopper. Working together with my clients I help create their dream home. Being an Independent (Designer) allows me the opportunity to make selections and recommendations, without any vested interest in any product or company. I merely make the best choice for my client.


Where most of my peers choose to present a contrived space that has been done many times before, I prefer to understand what the client likes and why then style in a way that reflects them. Visualisation is my best tool and I ask clients to select images from my Pinterest which they like, enabling me to get, within a few seconds, a snapshot of their desires. The best part is when I take my clients on shopping days, where we hop in the car and buy what we need for the home together. I create YOUR home not a magazine shot. Homes, and more specifically each room, should have personality and purpose engaging all of the five senses.”

Many Designers seem to possess an innate artistic creativity, were you artistic as a child?

I’m not artistic in the way most people perceive it. My experience was more specific like making a house out of anything I could. Even a cardboard box that our fridge was delivered in became my own house, complete with windows doors and of course furniture.

Through parental pressure to pursue a credible career I studied Economics at University but little did my family know that behind closed doors I was looking through Vogue Living and Home Beautiful magazines! I would sit and try to visualise these spaces and how they were created hoping that one day I would be able to do the same.”

Is there any interior design style you favour more than others? 

florida inspired opulence and luxurious decor in sitting room

“To be totally honest, I tend towards an opulence and luxury. Sophistication, refined classic elegance is the best way to describe my style.”

“Florida homes was the inspiration for this home on Hope Island. Notice the large painting on the wall? I actually had an artist paint directly onto the wall from images I had.”

 

 

What are you most ‘well-known’ for in the Industry?

“I am best know for my work with colour and textiles. This is something which comes through experience, some artistic ability and confidence. I am so happy when my clients are able to have the confidence to make their house their ideal home. Clients love shopping with me as I help select products that I know will work in their home, and I can explain my reasoning with analytical logic. While the clients input is very important, there are times when I need to finish off a room and the finer styling details. This make everything come together cohesively, and dare I say the word… fabulous!

Do you prefer functionality or appeal in your Designs?

“Any good design must have both. I think that it is just lack of knowledge about the plethora of possibilities that leads people to make compromised choices with their home. This is where I can help, being so passionate about what I do inevitably leads me to constant searches for new ideas and products. I still get great joy in revealing some of my ‘treasures’ to clients.

What are the Challenges that face those of us who decide to DIY when it comes to designing rooms?

“Retail and online design shops only present to you products that they decide will appeal to the masses, based on trend or sales. My research for new ideas and products allows me to find hidden treasures, for example, I have rugs that I use for external areas that look and feel like knotted Cotton, but are made from 100% recycled plastic bottles. Even Blinds that look like linen or grass weave can add texture and interest to a room. 

How many times I ask ‘what colour are your walls?’ and clients gives me a long list of paint colours which are just shades of white or beige. The client is then constantly trying to make the room look ‘finished‘ by adding more products, when in reality, all it needed was wallpaper or interesting window treatments. By playing the ‘safe’ card through lack of confidence we end up with a very ‘beige’ flat look.

Or if they are trying to be ‘on-trend’ there is of course the ‘new Beige’… GREY! Which can look good, just look at a few examples on my Pinterest Board; ’50 shades of grey’ but often it just looks drab and depressing. Most people would love some colour in their rooms and their life, and the most common mistake is to think in 2 or 3 colours. They think that adding a couple of cushions will fix it. All one needs to do is think of nature and how many shades of colour you see every day. I often refer clients to my ‘Colour Boards’ and get them excited about natural colour palettes that have so much interest and harmony.”

What are the essentials to consider when renovating?

“When renovating I always like to have the final look decided and work back from that. So many times we get lost in making many decisions about finishes and styles, that we overload on choice and end up making unwise choices. Within my design package I always allow for a Mood Board and 3D Computer-Generated Walkthrough. Then my client can see what I see as being the final result. I keep a database of specialist tradespeople that I recommend through my industry experience. Left to make decisions without an Interior Designer, like myself, can lead to spending a great deal more than you otherwise would have, purely because of this notion that price reflects quality.

In addition, be aware that many Interior Designers and Decorators working for Brands or Companies are paid to sell you particular products or services. Most of my clients allow me to oversee and assist with every stage of the renovation so that they can be confident the selections and results are the best possible without any bias.”

What are the areas or products you suggest clients invest in when styling their homes?

“Invest in the very best sofa that you can afford.

Other than your bed, the sofa is where you spend most nights. It’s a place to relax and enjoy your home. To the novice all sofas look the same, but as I learned very early on in my career, from one of my mentors; John Moran, one should always sit ‘in’ a sofa not perched ‘on’ it. The quality of the inside components and the workmanship, fabric or leather are important factors to the longevity of the furniture. Never compromise the quality of the sofa above other items in the room.

Window treatments are the next important element. Architects build large glass doors and windows which, in most cases, should have some sort of covering like Blinds or Curtains. Especially with the focus on saving energy, this barrier not only reduces power bills but saves furnishings from sun damage. In addition, clients often forget that a wall of windows or glass when covered with a beautiful fabric or finish adds colour, texture and interest just as any wall finish like wallpaper or paint does.

Lighting is the one other major component that is so important. Most of us spend a lot of time at night in our homes and if the lighting is designed correctly for the areas it can add depth and dimension to an otherwise flat area. Why do you think the after shots on all the television programs look so amazing? The use of up-lights and shadows can make any object look spectacular. Artwork and sculpture should have the special lighting that focuses our attention on the object without any light spillage.

Of course, there is also a great opportunity to combine sculpture and lighting together. In one project, I used an oversized floor lamp to create a focal point and add interest in the room.”

What are the questions that you ask to all of your clients before starting a project?

“I get to know about their lifestyle and what the client has always desired in their dream home. Rather than get them to try and explain it in words I get them to show me images of the look they like. This allows me to instantly get a snapshot of what they truly are searching for. It’s also important to know ‘what items do you currently have?’ to incorporate them into the design.”

What recent trends or products are most popular with your clients?

hamptons style chaise chair with lighting and soft furnishings

“Trends are not something I try to follow, as I believe your interior should be a reflection of you not what is dictated.

That being said, there are some trends which many clients are drawn towards for many reasons. Many tell me they are after the ‘Hamptons’ look which is very popular. They mean the very white, grey and slightly nautical look. True ‘Hamptons’ style varies a great deal and this is when I refer clients to my Pinterest to show me the look they are after. This style suits our climate and is especially suited to Queenslander homes. Trends come and go, but if a home is styled and designed well it will never date.”

How do you keep up with sustainability and industry technology changes?

Green technology is always a consideration. I find products daily just by looking online and in stores at what is being done and what has been designed. Products made from recycled material need not be just for the nature lover but can also be the better option in some instances.

The decoration of a home should always include window coverings such as Blinds and Curtains. Not only for the aesthetic value, but for the insulation properties. They assist by keeping the heat or cold at bay to reduce the pressure on our heating or cooling systems, which struggle under extremes of temperature. Fabrics, Blinds and even Rugs can now be made from recycled material… one of my current favourites is a rug that I use both indoors and outdoors which looks and feels like a cotton woven rug. In actual fact it is made of 100% recycled plastic bottles.”

How would you describe your personal style?

Refined, romantic, relaxed. Classic and Contemporary, personal and styled.
My style varies from the Ultra Modern to the Opulence of a Florida style home.
It has a balance and harmony with nature. But most importantly, as the Interior Designer for my clients, I create a ‘home’ that is a pleasure to be in. My best reward is the utter joy on the faces of my clients when they see and love the results.

My job, as I see it, is to create the style that clients like while still preserving design principles, budget and functionality. This is why I have called my service ‘My Designer.’

I will walk with you through the exciting journey of decorating your home to completion, without compromising, without pressure. Just honest guidance throughout the whole process.”

bedroom with moody, luxe colours and lighting

“Classic opulence for this bedroom which had a very different beginning.”

Interested in working with Peter? For assistance on your next project:

Pinterest Page: “MY HOMES”
Website: In the process of Building my website – watch this space!
Email: mydesigner@my.com
Phone: 0424 715 826

 

 

TÁBATA GALVÃO

 

Brisbane Interior Designer Tabata GalvaoTábata Galvão is a Brisbane-based Interior Design Student, originally from Brazil. Tábata’s passionate and artistic personality led to her love of Interior Design and Architecture from an early age. She would often illustrate childrens’ books and even re-arrange furniture in her relatives’ homes as a young girl.

Soon to Graduate, Tábata is currently working on the refurbishment of the University of Canberra’s ‘Creative Hub’ as part of her Coursework with TAFE Brisbane; “The Creative Hub design will offer a dynamic and innovative space to enhance the student experience, by providing an engaging environment that facilitates student and staff interaction.”

Tábata is attracted to the concept of ‘printing’ personality on a project, describing her own personal Design style as encompassing “black and white, as I believe this colour duo has so much potential. It can be engaging, elegant, as well as simplistic.”

 

Is there an Interior Design Style that you favour more than others?

“I can be quite eclectic, depending on my mood or the phase of life I am at. I go from the straight lines and light filled spaces of minimalism, to dramatic interiors like Baroque and Rococo style.

However, I must say that as an Interior Designer, we learn how to fall in love with each and every design style. It allows us to be able to implement them into a project and to work with a diversity of people.”

Do you prefer functionality or aesthetics in your Designs?

Although I am a visual person…functionality is extremely necessary in any space in order to live-well. However, functionality in conjunction with aesthetics are the key factors to have a successful interior. Nowadays, products are created with the intention to satisfy not only aesthetic criteria, but also, of utility and practical function.”

 Is there something you aim to achieve with every design?

I always try to achieve a Unique space that reflects the client’s personality, lifestyle or Brand. My biggest influences and inspirations are the people that I am currently working with in a project.”

Concept art of a Storage Unit

Bedroom Mood Board Concept with black and tan colour palette

What are the essentials to consider when renovating and styling?

Living room Mood Board Concept with black and tan colour palette by interior designer tabata galvao

“Establishing a goal is very important, as well as understanding why you are renovating. Are you renovating for yourself… or to sell or rent a property? Interior Design is about solving problems and putting the pieces together for a functional result.

Texture through textiles can make any space feel welcoming and warm. Artwork adds personality, visual appeal and it provides an instant colour palette to the space. It also creates a focal point in the room.”

How important is it to include green technology and sustainability in Interior Design?

Sustainable Design seeks to reduce negative impacts on the environment, and the health and comfort of property occupants. Therefore, it improves any kind of building and interior performance. It ensures that human beings have their health protected including the planet’s health. Sustainable technology can also add value to your property and it is the future. I believe that in a few years sustainability will be main criteria to all projects.”

Are Interior Designers are becoming more popular in Residential projects?

“Yes, especially in countries with a competitive real estate market… Interior Designers can help you stay on budget, solve problems or avoid them. They save you time and add value to your project.”

What style or product do you think will be the next big Trend in 2018?

“Contradictorily to 2017’s Minimalism style and light colour palette, 2018 seems to be going towards an abundance of warm and earthy colours in conjunction with Maximalism.

Marble continues to be a material trend for 2018. As well as ceiling wall-paper, curved shaped furniture, wicker, cordless lamps, black kitchens and portable lighting.”

Interested in working with Tábata? For assistance on your next project:

Instagram: @tabgalvao

Email: tabgalvao@gmail.com
Phone: 0487 222 857

WHAT’S NEXT?

 

Reading about the experiences of these two different Interior Designers gave us lots of things to consider for our next Project! We hope you found some useful ideas as well!

Working with an Interior Designer allows you to keep focus during your renovation and decoration efforts. With an Interior Designers help, you won’t be completely overwhelmed by all the choices from paint colours to plant pots! We’ve included the contact details for Peter and Tábata, so you can speak to them directly about your home.

As always, V Custom Blinds are here with expert knowledge on all things Shades, Shutters and Screens, so if you need that custom solution contact us now.