Katie Seidler – Design Perspectives: We say "Hello" to "Hello Haus"
A designer based north of London, running a company named after her husband’s German heritage and known for her love of Japanese and Scandinavian styles, hers is a truly global perspective.2 May 2022
Katie has a very simple approach in terms of a mission statement: she sees a client’s home less as bricks and mortar, more of what she describes as a sanctuary she wants to help them "fall back in love with"”. It’s a formula that has worked well over the past few years. As someone whose interiors career began as an Instagram influencer, she has gone on to become one of the most promising new names in the industry, thanks to her refreshingly honest and highly personal approach.
Her own home, the one that featured in those early postings with which she made her name, is still something of a living, breathing moodboard, even though she insists it is exactly that, a home and not a showhome, something proven by the fact that she doesn’t even ask visitors to remove their shoes. Fittingly, given the subject matter, I kept mine on to talk to her about her approach to flooring.
In any design project, how important a consideration is the flooring and terms of the way it may influence your approach?
Flooring is one of the key priorities when starting any home re-design. It connects each space in your home, creates flow and instantly sets the tone and style of the house. As flooring can be one of the largest expenses it’s important to take the time to understand a few key factors that balance out its aesthetics with functionality.
Firstly, functionality - we need to ensure the flooring is fit for purpose and for that, as a designer, I need to know how the home will be used daily. For example, I need to ensure the right carpet is used for high-traffic areas such as stairs or living rooms or hard-wearing and durable wooden/laminate flooring in spaces where it needs to be easy to clean and maintain. The client is at the heart of all the decisions I make when selecting flooring for a project - from their style, to their budget to how they will be using their home.
Are there any current trends you are aware of in terms of the types of floor coverings you’re asked to work with or incorporate?
There is definitely a shift back to herringbone patterns in “wood” flooring, be that LVT, laminate or solid wood. It can be easily translated into both period and new homes to inject some character.
Many have told me that months in Lockdown fuelled something of a boom in renovation projects all over the continent. Is that something you’re aware of?
Yes, absolutely. Lockdown highlighted how important our homes are for our well being, it shifted many people into creating an office at home as our working patterns changed. I have also seen a desire to expand living spaces to allow more room to spend as a family, have friends over and generally make the house feel more sociable. A lot of my projects have been on open plan kitchen/diner/lounge renovations over the past year with a focus on connection.
The pandemic is said to have strengthened our bond with nature to some extent. How is that manifesting itself in interiors?
During the multiple lockdowns I saw an increasing desire to be connected to the outdoors, indoors. This became evident with the growth of “biophillic design” which, put in the simplest terms, is bringing natural materials into our homes. Whilst this isn’t anything new, I noticed that we were craving it more and more throughout 2020 and 2021.
Natural materials are good for our wellbeing so I actively try to use them in my design work. Whether that’s through wooden furniture and accessories, plants or using colours from the earth such as green, blue and putty/brown. Dulux’s “colour of the year” for 2020 and then 2021 were brown “Brave Ground” and blue “Bright Skies” which is no surprise as psychological the more connected we feel to nature, the calmer it makes us.
With floor coverings, do you have any personal favourites?
I’m an advocate of flooring such as LVT for its durability and quality. However, you really can’t beat a beautifully restored parquet floor if budget allows! It’s timeless and you can find incredible reclaimed floors to restore. In modern spaces or those with a minimal approach to design I love polished concrete, it can be warm, durable and looks incredible against natural wood.
Author: Richard Burton / Worldshow Media
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