Q & A // Lauren Ridley, Creative Director of Brass & Rose Interiors

What is your background & why did you set up Brass & Rose Interiors?

Having my own Interior Design company was always my goal, so I knew it was always a case of when, rather than if. I studied BA (Hons) Interior Design at Teesside University, from there I gained my initial experience working for a number of local companies as a kitchen & bathroom designer with a little stint in New York for good measure. On my return, I became an in-house designer for a bespoke developer. This allowed me to be involved in every stage of the house build whilst still maintaining a customer focus. It gave me the opportunity to be around trades, architects and suppliers on a daily basis along with working very closely to the client, designing every element of their new executive home.

I suppose the reason I have always had that desire to create my own business is to offer clients a more personal and tailored service in the way I think customer service should be. For me, the client is the heart of each project and I have designed the business around that. Being able to choose which suppliers and products we work with and have that freedom to create a space that is unique to the client rather than be guided by set rules or constraints is so refreshing. My goal has always
been to create a space that wows, no matter what the size, function or budget. This can be achieved in so many ways but for me that’s when understanding your client’s lifestyle and what they want to achieve is paramount.

Describe a typical day for you?

I’m not sure if there is such a thing when owning a business but as a small but perfectly formed team it means you have no choice but to pull up your socks and be involved in all elements. This ranges from meeting new clients, social media management, sourcing new suppliers or the odd office day designing. It’s very much like the weather, projects can change quite quickly so we stay as flexible as possible, whether it means we have a relaxing day creating schemes in the office or running around like a headless chicken from supplier to site making sure that everything runs smoothly for our clients.

It’s really made me appreciate what it takes to run a business and allowed me to quickly decide what does and doesn’t work and change it.

What is your biggest inspiration?

I think it’s anything that makes me jump off my seat and do that little excited dance. Professionally that could come from the finish on a light fitting, the pattern on a wallpaper or the way the light can create a different feel in a space. There are no real restrictions and is exciting to feel that as a creative you can take inspiration from the smallest detail or insignificant thing. I would absolutely say that what drives me as a person is being around like-minded people, people that make you feel like you can achieve anything and motivate you by just a simple 5-minute chat. I am always refreshed by that and wish I could bottle it up.

What is your favourite part of the design process?

I think I have learnt to love the whole process very quickly. As each client is different and every project unique, it means that the design journey is completely tailored which brings both it’s challenges and rewards. I would say that the part that still gives me excited butterflies, maybe quite selfishly, is when a
potential client enquires. For me, I am so humbled that someone has seen your work or heard good things about what you do and is considering you to create a beautiful home for their family. It is such a personal thing and to be trusted with that by an individual is such a privilege. I don’t think I will ever lose that feeling.

What is next for Brass & Rose Interiors?

I feel like it’s a really exciting time for us, we are very proud to have just celebrated our first birthday and with that feel like we have got our feet under the table within the Teesside area. It’s a great time for reflection on what has worked well, what hasn’t and how we grow and achieve what we have set out to do as we move forward. We have number of exciting launches, ideas and collaborations with local businesses in the pipeline that I hope will really distinguish us within the North East & Yorkshire. I think that’s one of the most exciting things about owning a business, the options are endless if you dream big enough. Lots more will be revealed across our social media in the upcoming weeks and months so watch out! Oh and not forgetting our blog focusing on all things interiors, kitchens, bathrooms and creative!

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