Harp Interiors is a business-focused, commercial design and refurbishment company that began in 2013 when owner Hayley Roy worked on her own in her spare room. Now the company has seven uniquely talented designers, all with an eye for success and a design background in hospitality. In this month’s spotlight interview Hayley explains why branding is the most vital aspect of designing a space.
What made you go into design?
I’ve always been interested in design since school and a notable time in my interior design career was my work with Superyachts in my early twenties.
I also started working as a buyer for a furniture business in 2001, and worked my way up within the business and became managing director in 2010. Part of this role included design within the marketing team as well as assisting large clients with decisions on their furniture. I became increasingly more involved with the clients’ interior decoration as I was frequently getting asked for my opinion. I really enjoy helping businesses create successful interiors and have carried out several interior design courses.
What is the most important element you look for when stepping into a space?
It’s important to work with the existing architecture of the building so that you make the most of the natural light. The flooring is the main canvas for a room and it should draw focus in a positive way, so I always try to visualise the best way to utilise the flooring design so that it has a maximum impact when people walk into the room.
For you, what’s the most vital aspect to consider when designing a space?
The branding is vital. Harp Interiors itself doesn’t have a particular style, instead we work on incorporating our clients’ business strategy and culture. My theory is that the end user gets all the brand messages through, what I call, little “moments of truth.” These are subconscious thoughts and reactions the customer has as they notice the smaller details that give the business its unique personality. These moments can determine whether or not the customer feels comfortable and at home in the space.
What would you say most of your clients are looking for when they come to you?
They want a partner to work with who will help to maximise the revenue of their business.
Are there any particular trends you are incorporating into your latest projects?
Current trends we are using in projects include natural textures, and all of Karndean’s products are inspired by the natural world and capture the look and feel of real wood and stone. The other popular trends right now are industrial, boho, botanical, Aztec and colonial.
What’s the first question you ask a client before undertaking a design project?
I ask them what they want to achieve by working with Harp Interiors. We concentrate on the flow of a business and because of our experience in hospitality design, we understand the practical issues as well as the importance of bringing a creative flair to the project.
What has been your favourite design project to date?
Perrywood Garden Centre (pictured below) was a rewarding project. We worked hard with the family who owned the business and created a design that both suited the brand and kept the directors excited. The focus was on reducing the noise level in the main restaurant and, as well as being able to withstand the hustle and bustle of a busy commercial environment, Karndean's Van Gogh Country Oak is considerably quieter underfoot than real wood.
How does flooring affect the way a room or space is defined?
The flooring is a visual key that defines areas and it can also alter the acoustics. It’s important to get the flooring right because it can make or break an interior scheme.
Thank you to Hayley from Harp Interiors for speaking to us about her latest projects and the importance of branding in interior design. Visit Harp Interior's website or get in touch via their Facebook and Twitter.