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CovetED Exclusive Interview with Fiona BarrattWednesday 22 February 2017
Surrounded by dedication and experience, Fiona Barratt has always been connected to the design industry from a very young age. Her grandfather, Sir Lawrie Barratt was the founder of Barratt Homes, one of the largest house builders in the United Kingdom. It is no wonder that the award-winning artist found her voice in design. She graduated from the Art Foundation and specialized in interior design. She also studied at the Chelsea College of Art in London, and the Parsons School of Design in New York. Since 2006, she has owned a successful design studio, Fiona Barratt Interiors.
She best describes her style as a modern luxury, a very cozy and comfortable yet luxurious design. She tends to use a cluster of different textures, whether they are natural or manmade, and she adds antiques to modern pieces in order to give it character.
Her passion for design is denoted in her exquisite creations and she loves working and meeting the people behind this revolutionary industry. As a result, she endears every opportunity to travel and discover new cultures, environments, and techniques. Furthermore, Barratt doesn’t view design as a source of employment but rather as an everlasting devotion, her fondness comes from how transformative it can actually be in someone’s life. Ultimately, it is an omnipresent art form.
When it comes to inspiration, Barratt regards everything and anything as a way to create new material. She can even find insight on a piece of garbage or crumpled paper, and it truly goes to show that an idea can appear at any given time as long as one is susceptible to their surroundings. In the end, this perfectly emphasizes the beauty of creativity.
To Fiona Barratt, it is not about imitating some other designer’s style but developing your own sense of self and style as a person and designer, as she explains, “I think it is important to look at what is out there, but I think that at the end of the day, when you’re a true creative you need to develop your own style.”
Viewing the subjectivity of each project, Barratt is incapable of choosing a favorite because everything plays a factor in the process, whether it is the client, the climate, or the parameters for a certain piece. She also discloses that not every day is easy, and as a matter of fact, she spends must of her time problem solving, however, it is her passion for design that makes it all worth it.
Fiona Barratt Interiors is currently developing 14 projects which are predominantly high-end residential, they are doing a commercial penthouse in Hong Kong on the waterfront that will be launched in 2017, and they also have multiple residential projects in Beirut, Moscow, and London.
The modern designer reveals that her philosophy in life and in design is to find a balance between being a working mother with three children under the age of five and running two businesses. Before she had children, she used to worry about deadlines and precision, but now she has become more philosophic by learning to accept the challenges of the world. One peculiar perspective about the designer is that she runs her studio like a family, it is important to her that the creative environment is nurtured, and not pressured, so as to have the absolute best performances.
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In reference to new designers, Barratt advises one to just focus on themselves and to be prepared to face many obstacles and turn negatives into positives. She encourages new artists by revealing that “this will make you stronger, you have to be driven and passionate, if you don’t love what you do, don’t do it.”
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