“Natural stone is always in fashion”
Natalia Berezovskaia and Octav Roman both graduated Ion Mincu University of Architecture and Urbanism, Interior Design Department. The two spouses founded “Creativ Interior” Design Studio in 2010. Since then, they became well-known with decoration projects for commercial spaces, yet the list of projects by these two architects is much larger: houses and apartments, medical clinics, hotels ... When studying their portfolio one can easily see the diversity of styles and proficiency the two show off in adjusting to the different destinations of the spaces. With this in mind, we became interested to find out more about these interior design professionals.
What should be the main attributes of an interior designer?
Although the image of a designer is associated with a well-known, lost grip on reality artist and his world, in fact the designer career is much more calculated, based on creativity and technical knowledge. A designer must at the same time be a good psychologist (for a harmonious relationship with the client), a good artist in the sphere of concepts and ideas, a little engineer and attention to details for by the book execution. At the same time he has to be a good salesman when it comes to promote his project and "sell it" the client.
It is well known that any creator has pride, whether justified or not ... How does this work in the field of interior design, the space where art meets necessity?
We believe there is pride in every field, but its amount is important. As a designer, it's good to be proud of your work and even to present your projects as they represent your best business card, but you need to know the limit of "praise." Otherwise you can become aggressive and even repulsive in front of the client.
The client has to be earned by trust, the proof of the promised result, but that's not before he understands exactly what a designer does, how he can help the client aesthetically and also practically and ergonomically.
What are the mandatory steps of an interior design project? How do you try to convince a client that his suggestions, big or small, are not beneficial to the project?
The design project must begin first and foremost by having an open discussion with the client. Here comes the designer's ability to understand (directly and indirectly) what the customer wants (even if most of the times you hear the answer: "I do not know what I want!"). To ask questions about the subject, thus obtaining the information needed to achieve a successful project in which both parties have to win.
After this important part begins the project itself, in which the designer makes the documentation (based on the style and the client's needs etc.), the proposal of the concept, the 2D design in which it presents the layout of furniture (optimizing the space best). Afterwards comes the 3D design in which there will be proposed the finishes, materials, furniture pieces, lighting fixtures and everything associated with the interior. If the project is accepted, then particularization, bidding and execution parts begin.
If the client approaches a designer with a specific idea and he does not want to give it up, yet this idea does not exploit the space, then it is the designer's responsibility to bring plausible arguments for convincing the customer that the solution he proposes will bring added value interior. Ideally, the client-designer relationship should be transparent and trust-based (as mentioned above).
The market for natural stone is constantly growing in Romania, we see this in the increased number of PIATRAONLINE customers. How do you see this already established tendency of the Romanians for natural stone?
A natural material does not compare to an "imitation". That's what the Romanians understood, that's the trend of the past 2-3 years. That's why designers are more willing to promote for customers quality materials that are more durable, look more beautiful and are even more affordable.
What do you think about natural stone as a material used in interior design? What is more appealing for this material: durability, texture and chromatic diversity, different shapes?
Like I said, a natural look looks more appealing in an interior, both aesthetically and tactile. Although it sometimes requires extra aftercare, the natural stone will gain notoriety through its elegance, through the irregular texture, yet customizing the image, through the option to shape it according to the project specifications. We will always be fascinated by natural stone, whether it be marble, granite or even onyx.
Usually, how things work when you start a decoration project: you imagine what the place would look like, have the idea and look for the stone that best highlights it, or discover a natural stone product - tile, mosaic etc. - and then imagine how to implement it?
There is no rule for proposing the material. Sometimes it happens to imagine the project from the first contact with the new space and following the chosen style or maybe the customer's request who specified from the beginning that he wants to use natural materials and then we are looking for the best solution etc. It all depends on the project.
When recommending natural stone to your clients, what are your main selling points?
The most valuable point is that natural stone is a material always in fashion and the customer knows it!
You own "Creativ Interior" Design Studio together. What is the significance of interior design in Romania these years, your company being established in 2010? How do Romanians see this condition, people looking for spaces to represent them and make them feel good?
We are the generation of designers that needed to accept the compromises. And I'm not saying it in the bad sense of the word. On the contrary, we are the generation that sees how things have begun to evolve on the Romanian market.
People start to be interested and experiment, but here I’m referring more to the new, young generation that traveled, read and documented about interior design and how a decoration project can modify the atmosphere in a space.
Even if our challenge is to "train" the people of Romania and explain what a designer does exactly and how he can help you, the result of recent years is enchanting. We evolved with our client, the real estate market blossomed, with materials diversity as well.
In conclusion, we are in constant growth and hope to move in this direction from now on!