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5 questions for - Sophie Robinson, Großbritannien

Sophie Robinson

Blueprint Interior Architecture is a small but very busy and creative interior design practice. It was started by Sophie Robinson, architect and interior designer in 2011 and is now a team of three, Georgie Stuart, illustrator and junior design consultant and Beverley Croft, interior designer.

Our interior work is primarily in the hospitality industry but has also included private homes and offices. Our work varies from refurbishment programmes for bedrooms across multiple hotels and large 500 plus cover restaurants and event spaces to small bespoke bar refurbishments and fabric design.  Our team is diverse with architectural expertise to illustration skills which combines and complements, enabling us to deal with large scale projects both creatively and pragmatically but to always be mindful of the detail.

What are the main criteria for choosing a fabric?

This obviously depends on its end use, we are always seeking fabric and finishes that are both hard wearing and practical but balance with selecting fabric ranges that also offer varied design choices. I like variety and mixing up textures and pattern and colours to create interest in an interior.

 

When inthe creative process do you decide on which fabric to use?

It varies as often a design can be generated just by one ‘thing’. Sometimes that could be based on the projects’ location or the history of the building itself or sometimes I find a colour of a fabric or an object which starts that process off and a design builds around it. So, the choice of fabrics ‘knit’ in at various stages through this process.

 

What is more important: visual design or function? And why? Would you decide in favour of function although the design does not fit exactly- or the other way around?

I couldn’t separate the two, both are important. But if we find a fabric we particularly love but it’s too expensive or not as hard wearing then we are selective about how we use it, changing its location to be more practical or use a small amount of it. I would not use a fabric if the design or colour was not right even if its function was perfect.

Drapilux’s ranges have accommodated our design needs when searching for a multitude of fabrics.

Why do you like to work with drapilux textile?

Drapilux fabrics have all the practical and technical requirements that our clients need- fire retardant, ease of washing, hard wearing and so on. We have worked with drapilux for four years using the Coordn8 range among others for the soft furnishings in a rolling refurbishment programme of over 1000 bedrooms for Warner Leisure Hotels. Drapilux’s ranges have accommodated our design needs when searching for a multitude of fabrics. They have been a huge support through the process both in achieving timescales which are sometimes tight, printing and manufactured to programme. They have also been proactive in suggesting and assisting when we want to alter colours and designs.

 

You are faced with textiles nearly every day. How has the market changed and where is the sector is heading?

Fabrics for the commercial market are getting more ‘technical’ and we are seeing fabric used traditionally in the healthcare sectors for example, transferring more comfortably into hospitality projects. The function of fire retardancy, wash-ability, even antimicrobial properties are still relevant and useful. But what is apparent is that fabrics have become more design led, with a greater choice of textures and pattern also improved and varied colourways. Manmade fibres are effectively mimicking natural fabrics and therefore look and feel more expensive and appealing often with the benefit of being more economical and robust.

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