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In Profile:
Carli Robinson Design

In Profile:

Carli Robinson Design

Shortlisted: for 11 categories

The International Design & Architecture Awards 2024

Carli Robinson Design

Name: Carli Robinson

Company: Carli Robinson Design

Position within company: Founder & Director


Tell us a little about your background in design:

The journey of Carli Robinson Design stemmed from a passion for interior design fuelled by a deep love for art, architecture, and interior design. At a young age, I was introduced to a world of creativity, which ignited a fire within me, sparking a lifelong pursuit of excellence in design.

At the heart of Carli Robinson Design is a rich backstory that has shaped my design journey. Growing up in a family immersed in arts, architecture, and interior design, I was exposed to the captivating world of creativity from an early age. My family’s business, which began in 1985, collaborated with renowned architects to create realistic property and development models for corporate and hospitality projects. Over time, the business evolved, diversifying into bespoke furniture, lighting, and sculptures for luxury hotels and resorts worldwide, which soon became a hallmark of my family’s work. Our family’s business had successfully completed 59 luxury 5 and 6 star hotel and resort projects where they supplied and installed architectural elements, bespoke furnishings, lighting and large-scale sculptures.

After gaining experience working for high-end brands and in the luxury hospitality industry spending over a decade working on some of the most luxurious superyachts, immersing myself in the intricacies of interior decoration, renovation, and new-built yachts, I started my own Interior design business, infusing it with my vision and creative flair. This immersive experience propelled my journey further, honing my expertise in designing spaces that effortlessly combine functionality with aesthetics.

Carli honed her skills with each project, cultivating an exquisite eye for detail and a deep understanding of how spaces impact human emotions. Carli Robinson swiftly gained recognition for her ability to craft spaces that exude luxury while maintaining a timeless appeal.

How would you describe your personal design style?

I personally don’t like to fit a design style into a box. I love creating new styles combining certain elements that complement each other to arrive at a unique and well-balanced design.

If I had to summarise my personal design style, it would be contemporary with a twist. I like to add something unique and interesting to each of my designs that you don’t see everywhere. I love including elements that makes you stop and think about how they are composed together to create a symphony.

Where does your design inspiration come from?

We all get ideas from nature, places we visit, hotels, restaurants, travelling, and architecture, amongst many other elements; however, I do feel that my best ideas come from within. I often dream up ideas that we have to brainstorm how to bring into physical form, and I have to be honest, most of the time, suppliers tell me they have never done it. Usually, my response is that there’s a first time for everything and more than one solution to any challenge we might face. I love making artwork and this is the time where you take yourself out of the daily stressed mindset and just be creative, so I always make sure I have a notepad handy to jot down ideas when working on my art as this is when the creative juices flow.

In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense?

I believe design will always revolve around combining aesthetics and practicality; however, we are moving more in the direction of easy maintenance in general. Fabrics that are performance fabrics, stain resistant or washable and in general designs that ease daily operations, for example, installing a central lighting control system with pre-set moodlighting that can be activated with a single button or electric blinds and curtains and making use of new technologies to in essence save us time. If you consider how we would normally need to go around your home to turn on all individual lamps, lights and dim them to certain levels, manually open and close blinds and curtains and even vacuum the house all takes a lot of time of which we don’t have the luxury of in today’s age. There are options to control many of your homes elements via an app or central system for example playing music throughout the house which is controlled by our phones or an app, central heating also controllable on your phone, automated vacuum cleaners, boiling a kettle via Bluetooth, starting your shower with a system in the bathroom where it notifies you when warm to name a few.

Carli Robinson Design
Carli Robinson Design
Carli Robinson Design
Carli Robinson Design

Name five key themes to consider when approaching design in 2023 and beyond.

  1. Lighting – layering lighting and having a combination of functional as well as architectural or aesthetic lighting to create ambiance.
  2. Practicality – spaces should be easily maintained, comfortable and user friendly
  3. Functional – special planning is crucial to make sure a space flows and designed for its main purpose
  4. Colour and the effect it has on your emotions – colour plays a vital role in interior design and when choosing the right colours and colour combinations can instantly make a space feel more luxurious without spending extra money but by merely planning your colour scheme well
  5. Catering to all your senses – Textures – ads warmth to a space – The look and feel should consider all aspects of the senses by incorporating scents, soft underfoot rugs, visual aesthetics, taking care of acoustics and considering sound and music

If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to design schemes, what would it be?

My formula has always been to combine masculine shapes (linear clean lines) with feminine shapes (organic and round shapes) as when you do this correctly, this is where the magic happens.

How important are The International Design & Architecture Awards?

We have been looking forward to enter The International Design & Architecture Awards for some time. We have completed a few projects in the past that we had strict nondisclosures agreed and could not share these amazing designs and finally we can share our designs with the world. We are very proud of what we have achieved, and The International Design & Architecture Awards offer the opportunity to be recognised for our passion, creativity and achievements.

From a general perspective it offers all designers an opportunity to showcase their work and also drives designers to endorse local and international suppliers and product and furniture designers.

What projects are you currently working on?

Carli Robinson Design recently completed a project in Ascot, UK – Phase 1 of the luxury Ibiza villa project just completed recently and we have phase 2 on both of these projects coming up in the new year. Carli Robinson Design also have on the horizon a range of boutique hotels we will be working on in Europe and, finally, a Superyacht project towards the middle of next year.

What was your favourite project to work on and why?

It certainly has to be one of our projects in Ibiza, called Villa Yabisa for which we are shortlisted. Everything about this project was unique. The owners wanted everything but the ordinary which made this project so much fun to work on and the outcome has been incredible. Every person who sets foot in that property leaves with their jaw on the floor. Even I had to pinch myself when we saw it completed for the first time. It is always an emotional moment to see it all finished as we all know these projects present many obstacles to overcome, and we often had to think outside the box to solve problems, but in essence, it was teamwork and even working alongside the construction company has been a pleasure.

What was your most challenging project to work on and why?

I have to say the above again, Villa Yabisa. Carli Robinson Design had challenging projects in the past however this particular project tested our patience and threw us off many times over. Lead times for glass, marble, electronics and furnishings to name a few were constantly extended and to top the cake when we finally installed the glass on the 4 storey staircase after waiting 8 months for the glass to be delivered, the construction team installed this in the summer and due to extreme temperature fluctuations one of the large glass panels shattered. To top this off, we installed an automatic panoramic roof above the staircase made of glass not only for aesthetic reasons but to allow hot air to escape in the hot summers. We also waited 6 months to perfect the floating stair carpentry along with specialised plaster effects on the walls that runs throughout all levels. It hardly ever rains in Ibiza however this evening when the finish line was in site, the contractors had forgotten to close the panoramic roof and this particular evening they had more rainfall than they did the entire summer season. The timing could not have been worse as we had to redo all the stairs and all specialised plaster due to the wood stained water running down 4 levels leaving a lot of damage in its wake that all had to be redone. Nevertheless we resolved all issues and everything and it all looks flawless.

Carli Robinson Design
Carli Robinson Design
Carli Robinson Design

Which products/services could you not live without when designing?

Lighting, rugs, fabrics and joinery.

What are your aims and goals for the next twelve months?

Carli Robinson Design are in a position to take on a couple of large projects and as we are passionate about both residential and hospitality we would love to do projects both withing the UK and internationally. We set large goals for ourselves each year and we always manage to achieve them. I am certain it is the same for most interior designers but each year we set a higher turnaround and financial goal however we want to create something magical and so we are aiming to do just that. The bigger the better.

Final thoughts; tell us a little more about yourself and your daily inspirations:

Your most treasured possession?

There are many however the most treasured possessions are always the ones you cannot replace. As a gift from one of my very first clients was a set of 18th century Japanese scrolls which are priceless.

Your favourite holiday destination?

We have spent a lot of time in the Amalfi coast over the years and it never gets old. The food, the atmosphere, the people, the sunshine and of course all the design aspects are just breathtakingly beautiful.

Your favourite hotel, restaurant & bar?

Oh my, I have a list however there is one restaurant that definitely tops the list. It is called Sa Capella in Ibiza which is a 16th century old chapel that they refurbished spending €65 million to get it to what it is today. It is like stepping back in time where all your senses are catered for. It has its original exposed stone walls and has wrought iron light fixtures that hang dramatically from the ceiling. The instantly recognisable statue Materia I esperit (which means “Spirit Matter”) forged from the branch of a gnarled olive tree has been beautifully preserved made by the late local artist  Hormigoover four decades ago. Apart from all its intricacies, the food is out of this world. It is truly a one-of-a-kind place.

Your favourite book, film & song?

Favourite Book, Mindpower into the 21st century  by John Kehoe. I read it the first time when I was 17 years old and I have read it over and over the last two decades. My life was completely transformed because of this book.

 Film – The Great Gatsby – the twenties, the fashion and style, the music, the elegance and sophistication and not to mention the design and fascinating interiors – just love it all

Song – La Vie en Rose by Edith Piaf. I am convinced I was born in the early 1900’s and lived through the 20’s as this era just blows my mind. However, growing up, my parents would always play Edith Piaf on Sundays when we used to cook a big Sunday roast together and drink wine and dance, so it throws me back to those times every time I hear it.

Your favourite food and drink? 

I love a fresh Ceviche with loads of punchy citrus. Favourite drink, nothing beats a good glass of Cabali red wine.

Your favourite way to spend an afternoon?

In my free time, when we do not have a lot of pressure and stress, I do love to work on my home, whether this be creating a piece of art, rearranging furniture or looking at how I can improve a space. This also keeps it interesting.

If you weren’t a designer, what would you be?

An artist. In my spare time I explore different mediums and textures to create different types of wall art.

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If you think you have what it takes to compete in The International Design & Architecture Awards, submit your application by following the links below:

Use the links below for more information about the Awards:

The International Design & Architecture Awards 2024
are organised by design et al and sponsored by:

Sylka Carpets
Joseph Giles

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