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Mihaela Cetanas, architect: “Natural stone brings energy and life to the project”

publicat in: Interviews // Publicata pe 29.03.2018

Continuing our series of interviews with interior designers and architects, we discuss with Mihaela Cetanas the trends and customers preferences in Romania in terms of interior design and also the benefits of hiring an interior design specialist. Mihaela graduated The Faculty of Theater and Television from Cluj, later attended Design Academy London, with Master in Interior Design / Interior Architecture and currently lives in Romania. Her studies, over seven years of experience in interior design projects and diplomas such as Think101x: The Science of Everyday Thinking gave her an overall view on any project.

What are the trends in Romania - in terms of interior design?

During the last years, we have witnessed a steady growth of customer interest for functional and organized interiors, based on aesthetic principles. This is related to the growing popularity of design and interior design services, the understanding of their specificity, compared to previous year perception, when they assimilated the design job and styling. Because, different from a decoration project designed by a decorator (mainly focused on visual harmony), an interior designer / architect plans and designs a decoration project based on the functional ''skeleton'' of space needs and uses suitable technical solutions, sustainable and aesthetic - unitary and balanced.

In Romania, design trends tend to be more and more associated with global trends in interior design in recent years. Of course, there is a particularity of the Romanian market, divided, in turn, into various options – based on the market segment of your customers. Young people want practical and trendy interiors, while the families with children focus on functional, contemporary and sustainable interiors, as for the commercial segment, the focus is more on understanding the client, while meeting the more complex needs of everyday life. There is a growing trend towards attention to detail and design concepts for improving life’s quality, which is very gratifying for interior designers, because essentially this is their job. This is about integration of natural materials in finishing and top quality (natural stone, wood etc.), in-house wellness concepts, furniture and sustainable lighting, recyclable, modular, flexible, adaptable and reliable solutions in time.

What styles / concepts do Romanian people prefer for home decoration?

In terms of style in interior design, Romania loves and will always love the integration of preferences with as many textures and finishes / natural shapes, even when they select - sometimes, depending on the budget – the finishing solutions that simply replicate natural materials (laminate flooring, particle board furniture, marble look ceramic tiles etc.). This speaks of a national specificity of decoration options and is a global perception, natural in the way of contemporary life and in the decoration trends for 2016.

From the contemporary style of New Minimalism (the new minimalism - focused on simplified solutions and personal decorative touches) to the contemporary-elegant, passing through the variations of the Nordic / Scandinavian style (very generous in modern-retro-chic options), to reinterpreted rustic and simplified decoration projects, the need for customization of the Romanian customer converges with the search for specific, technical and visual solutions, of high quality for a budget price, for each individual project. Young people prefer modern interiors, retro-chic design in different styles (Scandi-chic, northern reinterpreted, artsy, studio, contemporary) less classic styles. Middle aged people favor instead the elegant lines and finishes of contemporary design, often upgraded with classical-modern and traditional references. We also found a revival in the interest for Romanian products, whether design objects, furniture, finishes or decoration. Depending on the customer lifestyle, we often seek solutions and style references in a reinterpreted and customized manner for what we mean today by modern life: an eclectic mix of concerns and demands.

Instead of concluding, I can say that Romanian customers are more involved in the selection process, they are informed, ask questions, analyze and buy most of the time only after a rather in-depth assessment. More and more, Romanian clients looking for interior design services are familiar with this domain, both offline and online, and expect an experience by itself, human and personal, besides the design process and communication with the designer / architect.

@Mihaela Cetanas Design Interior 2016

 

Working with an architect for decorating a home - what are the major benefits that are overlooked?

I am pleased to notice, as we have seen in the past, an increase in importance of the architect (interior architect), the interior designer in the decoration process. This translates into a functional restructuring of the decoration project on a specific and reliable basis (different from the previous years, when the client-customer wanted to it alone), when this is possible.

The job of an interior designer / architect is multifunctional and aimed at space decoration, such as the role of a doctor or a lawyer for a patient / client - to diagnose / analyze the personality correctly and identify the right solutions and coordinating the people responsible with execution. And since it is not possible to be, most of the time, your own physician or lawyer, because the time, qualifications and priorities are not in favor of this, it is recommended to hire experts for solving specific problems.

The most important benefits – when deciding to work with a specialist (designer / interior architect) - are, as one would expect: the professional approach of a decoration project with customized technical and aesthetic solutions, according to customer needs and budget; pragmatic assessment and project execution focused on specific architectural plans; increasing the quality of life for the customers - as a result of the natural process of planning. And the budgeting from a realistic perspective, is one of the assets of the interior architect / interior designer - very important to mention, because it is essential and often neglected when you’re doing your own decoration project. Besides, the interior designer / architect can manage other key roles for the client: project manager (coordinating the actual decoration process on site, while proposing solutions for problems that may arise during execution), professional buyer (by recommending many design objects, components, furniture or finishes directly from the importer / producer, with lower prices compared to classic retail) and manager (in setting up, managing and communication process required for the decoration project).

As a conclusion, the interior designer / architect is the expert you hire when you need a design project for a residential or commercial space and need somebody to handle your administrative tasks: understanding the needs, choosing and managing the most suitable solutions, customized for your requirements and coordination of execution.

 

What type of decoration do you prefer for the natural stone?

Personally, I prefer the natural stone for its essence, the stylish feedback it transfer into the space to be decorated and the sustainability that comes along the selection of that space. Natural stone is ecological, beautiful and aesthetic, with natural textures and, last but not least, authentic and open as material - an essential quality that I absolutely love.

Each type of natural stone transmits a different vibration: marble speaks of exclusivity, refinement, elegance; travertine - of earthly, warm references; granite about rigor, order and discipline. Depending on your decoration project, design requirements and style, natural stone can be successfully integrated into any project, as material for flooring or cladding and even for furniture or decoration items. These are also examples from my decoration projects: flooring, ornamental cladding; bathroom sinks (from marble, travertine), countertops, furniture etc.

 

How can you highlight natural stone in a decoration project?

Since is an open material, natural and full of stylistic references, stone can be highlighted when installed on a surface large enough as to be noticed: floor, wall. It is a point of attraction and can be a subtle, refined element depending on how it is used. Marble looks very good in contemporary-minimalist decoration projects, for example, and may have an elegant look in eclectic decoration projects, etc.; travertine can be both rustic and modern, depending on the context in which it is used. The conclusion is that it should be used in the right context to be fully exploited, both functional and aesthetic.

For my job of interior architect, the use of natural stone brings energy and life to the project. These are highly valued, personal and professional features. It also brings structure - that is why it is so loved as a decoration material, assembling so many qualities in an interior balance.

What is the most common mistake in decoration projects where the stone has a main part?

The most frequent mistake is the use of unskilled, inexperienced, untrained people for installation. I think that when it is not possible to vouch for the professional quality of the installation team, there is also impossible to vouch for the results of their work.

For further details on using the best suited natural stone for the interior or exterior of your house give us a call at +40318.222.333, or send us an email at export@piatraonline.com!

Mihaela Cetanas, architect: “Natural stone brings energy and life to the project”
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