An interview with Claire Garner

Claire Garner’s love for interiors began at a very early age. After studying textile design and working for a number of designers, Claire established her own studio in 2013. In this interview, Claire discusses some of the most effective ways an interior can reflect a client’s personality, the key events she’ll be attending in 2018 and featuring our Signature designs in a number of recent projects.

What led you to establish your studio in 2013?
Having worked for other design studios for a number of years, I had been given an opportunity to take a role running an events company. It was a fantastic experience where I built upon my existing skill sets and learnt how to run a business. While I loved my time in events, after a few years I just missed the world of interior design too much, and it felt the right time to take the leap and set up on my own.

What do you think makes your studio unique?
We are a friendly team and deliver a very personal yet professional service. I design all of the projects personally, and I have a fantastic team who then oversee all of the projects through to installation. This means the project is well managed every step of the way, and it allows me to focus on design work, amongst other admin involved in running a business!

How would you describe your overall style or approach to interiors?
I always begin a project by focusing on the space planning - getting these foundations right are key to a successful room design. I always start by evaluating the room and mapping out the best use of space. The fun of colour and finishes comes next! In terms of style, my designs often have a contemporary classic feel, using a neutral palette as the backdrop and then layering colour on top, which creates a subtle and loveable space. Having said that, we’re not afraid of colour if that is what our client is after!
"In terms of style, my designs often have a contemporary classic feel, using a neutral palette as the back drop and then layering colour on top, which creates a subtle and lovable space"

What do you think are some of the most effective ways an interior can reflect a client’s personality?
During our initial meeting with our clients, we take the time to get to know them and try and understand the way in which they live, and what their tastes are. It’s difficult to say how, but after these meetings I usually have a fairly strong sense of their style and personality and what sort of feel the designs will have. In a more practical sense, art is a fantastic way of bringing out their personality within their rooms, and in turn, artwork can be a great starting point when looking at colours and form within the design.

Several of your recent projects featured a number of our lighting designs. What was it about these particular pieces that complemented these interiors so well?
I often specify Heathfield & Co lighting in our projects as they are so unique to other products on the market. They have a fantastic scale, and the extra level of detail in their finishes, such as the crackle glaze and flecks of metallic within the glass, add depth to a scheme.

What is your personal favourite Heathfield & Co product to date and why so?
It’s hard to choose, but if I had to pick one, I’d probably have to go for the Celine Natural Glacier- such beautiful soft greys, an unusual elegant shape, and I just love the crackle glaze.

What has been your most rewarding project to work on to date and why so?
Another hard question to answer - I find all of the projects I work on immensely rewarding - over the period of time it takes to install a project from the first meeting, we build relationships with out clients, and so it’s always an amazing feeling when we hand over a complete project to them and see their reactions to it.

What will be some of the major design exhibitions and events you’ll be attending in 2018?
In 2018 we’ll be attending various events in London during design week in March, including the launches of all the new fabric collections at Chelsea Harbour Design Centre. We’ll also be visiting Decorex and Focus in September, and Maison et Objet in Paris in September.

Your work has featured in a number of magazines and online blogs. Can you tell us some more about these?
We’re often asked to contribute to articles giving design tips, or selecting a piece of design that we particularly like. We’ve also had a number of our completed projects feature in national magazines - it’s always nice for us and our clients alike to see the completed project in print.

What kind of content can we expect to find on your social media channels?
We love Instagram not only for showcasing our completed projects, but also giving an insight to what goes on behind the scenes in our design studio. Follow our Insta-stories for daily updates of our current projects, events we’re attending and general insights into the life of an interior designer!
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