Gori & Yoon is a young design studio that I discovered on Instagram earlier this year. Founded in 2018 and based in Florence, Italian architect Elisa Gori and South Korean interior designer Jaehyun Yoon have… More
My love for K-Studio’s Dexamenes project is no secret. From the first time that I saw pictures of it I was hooked, and it remains one of my favourite hotel projects to date. So when K-Studios co-founder and creative director Dimitris Karampatakis agreed to be a part of my Behind the Design series, I was thrilled. It was clear from the beginning of our conversation that Dimitris is just as cool as the projects that his studio designs. His outlook and approach to design is thoughtful and exciting and I can’t wait to see what wonderful projects K-Studio develop in the future. Here is my interview with K-Studio’s Dimitris Karampatakis:
Has architecture and design always been your passion?
Yes, my dad is an architect and as we were growing up he would take my brother and I with him to visit the construction sites. It was very exciting to be exposed to the ethos of making things, different materials and construction techniques.
How would you design your design aesthetic?
We have an contextural approach to design. We feel a responsibility to understand the place where we are designing, to use local technologies and echo local culture so that we are respecting where we are designing.
Where do you find your design inspiration?
The starting point is the location and then we figure out how we can best meet the needs and aspirations of the project
What has been your most challenging project to date? Why?
Any project that involves different typologies – the more complex the typologies are the needs of the project become more complex.
You have designed an airport, restaurants, hotels and private residences, do you have a favourite type of project to work on?
I like complex projects that combine different uses. We recently designed a marina in Crete that combines many different leisure activities and includes a hotel and boutiques.
Do you have a favourite project that you have worked on?
We have worked on 200 projects over the past 15 years and it is difficult to pick a favourite. We tend to reflect back on certain projects such as the Plane house, Alemagou in Mykonos, Dexamenes and Burboni beach restaurant in the Costa Navarino part of the Dunes hotel resort.
How long does it normally take for you to complete a project?
It depends on the project. A 500 square metres villa could take one year for design and two years for construction. Our recent airport project though was fast tracked as the airport was still in use as construction was being done, so it was two years from start to finish.
Any favourite travel destinations that you like to escape to?
My house because I travel so much for work. We have a holiday home in Mykonos that I like to escape to as well. I also enjoy travelling to London, Salzburg Mountains and my favourite destination is Tokyo.
What wellness practices have you incorporated into your life to help you to deliver such wonderful projects?
My daughter helps to balance me out. I really enjoy cooking as a way to understand how to design and to coordinate things in design. With cooking you have control over the process. I also enjoy running and meditation.
Any words of wisdom for someone just starting out their design career?
Design is a vast workplace so don’t limit yourself. Don’t worry what type of designer you are
You can see more of K-Studio’s project at http://www.k-studio.gr or on Instagram @k_studio_gr. Special thanks to Dimitris Karampatakis for taking the time to speak with me and Joanna Burtenshaw for arranging this interview. All images courtesy of K-Studios and http://www.k-studio.gr
I hope that you have a beautiful day! XXS
How is your fall going so far? With the leaves changing, stunning sunsets (like the one above that I captured yesterday) and fabulous fall fashion, I am loving the new season so far! Here are my five favourite faves for the month:
With the cooler temps I am craving warming foods and getting creative in the kitchen every chance that I get. This grilled zucchini with stracciatella looks simple enough to make yet delicious enough to want to enjoy on a regular basis as a health side dish.
I recently ordered this coffee table book and I am loving it! As you know travelling and decor are two things that I love so the combination that this book provides is perfect for me. I find myself escaping into it whenever I get the chance, love it!
Fall fashion is always my favourite and this season is no exception. I am especially loving pairing blazers with everything from a full suit to jeans, leggings or even a dress. Here are three outfits that I am currently pulling inspiration from and my causal version for days when I am rushing but still want to look put together.
I often find myself feeling really stressed out and it’s often difficult to change the way I think about stress. I found the above image on Instagram (via @mindbodygreen) and I have decided to change my narrative. Here’s hoping that I birth something great due to my narrative shift!
I am overwhelmed with decorating decision for my condo which means that I have done very little. I found this image for a bedroom recently in my home design file (via @coveteur) and it perfectly captures the vibe that I was hoping for in my new place. It is now front and centre on my vision board as I move forward with my home decor project – wish me luck!
I hope that you are having a wonderful October so far, let me know what you are currently loving in the comments below. I hope that you have wonderful day! XXS
I had the pleasure of interviewing the incredibly talented Egyptian designer Ahmed Hussein for this month’s Behind the Design. I first discovered Ahmed on Instagram when I came across a stunning marble bathroom that he designed, and I have been hooked on his work ever since. His clever use of luxurious materials, texture, colour and art demonstrate a talent for design that most people can only hope to have. If you are looking for a talented designer to follow then look no further as Ahmed delivers projects that are nothing short of fabulous every single time. Without further adieu, here is my interview with Ahmed Hussein:
- Did you always know that you wanted to work in architecture and design? Has it always been your passion?
In the beginning, I decided to go to the faculty of engineering to become a chemical engineer like my cousin, to get big salary.
But at the end of the first year, in the engineering drawing class, one of the teachers noticed that my drawing was very different and distinctive,
Then asked me, which department you will join?
I answered chemical.
He asked me do you love chemistry.
I answered no.
Then he smiled and starts talking about architecture.
- How would you describe your design esthetic?
Design as a musical melody has to touch your feelings
- Where do you find your inspiration from?
From everything and everywhere
- What has been your most challenging project so far? Why was it so challenging?
El Merghany apartment because of the painted 2 ceilings 7m x 4m and 3m x 4m
- What has been your favourite project to date?
Every project I did has something in my heart
- How long does it take for you to normally complete a project?
8 to 12 months
- Any favourite travel destinations that you like to escape too? Why?
Paris, Rome, Athens & Barcelona
Historical cities, I love old stories
- Describe your perfect day in Cairo – what would you do? Where would you go?
The week days I start my day at 10 am go to my office and finish at 7pm
Then I go back home to see my family
The weekend I try to relax and do something new and different with my friends and my family
- What wellness practices do you incorporate into your lifestyle to help you deliver such beautiful projects? (This can range from workouts, nutrition, meditation practice, etc)
I take my bike at the night with my headphones for one hour before I sleep
(Workout and music give me the power)
- Where do you see yourself in five years?
I hope to become one of the most famous designers in the world
- Any words of wisdom for someone who is just starting out their design career?
Follow your passion, be prepared to work hard and sacrifice, and above all don’t let anyone limit your dreams
Thank you Ahmed for taking the time for this interview!
If you would like to see more of Ahmed’s work you can find him on Instagram @ahmedhusseindesigns
All pictures in this post were provided by Ahmed Hussein Designs.
I hope that you have a fabulous day! XXS
Happy September Everyone!
I cannot believe that the summer is over! Truth be told though, I have every intention of keeping the warm weather attitude alive as long as I can. So that means, that while I will soon be bundled up in boots and coats and cozy cardigans, the happy light weight attitude of summer will remain for as long as I am able to hold on to it. How are you celebrating the new season (yes I realize that the calendar still gives us a couple of weeks until this actually happens – work with a girl please!)? Let me know in the comments below!
Here are five things that I am currently loving:
It’s nothing new, but I am seriously loving the pairing of sporty clothing with something more sexy. I am especially into outfits like this one that pairs basic sweatshirts with a cute mini skirt and some fabulous heels. Until I need to seriously cover up and put on some boots I will happily be rocking this trend.
I am currently on vacation in Madrid where I recently tried this dish – sautéed shrimp with mango and avocado and it was delicious! It is so good and simple to make that I will be recreating it once I get back to Montreal in an effort to keep the summer spark alive!
I am completely hooked on Money Heist aka La Casa de Papel. I found the first couple of episodes a little challenging to get into, but ever since I am a woman obsessed. I am currently watching season three for the second time and I cannot wait until season four drops (any ideas on when that will be???). If you are looking for a phenomenal show on Netflix to watch (and you are okay with Subtitles unless you are fluent in Spanish), Money Heist is worthwhile checking out.
Fall is the season for leather, and while I will happily be incorporating a bit of leather into my outfits I am especially loving the idea of accenting my home with it. This chair in particular matched with a jute rug has me on the hunt for a similar version. Love, love, love!
I came across this on Instagram today felt the need to share. I loved this post because it reminded me that I do have control over somethings, and that I owe it to myself to put effort into them in order to show up as my best self. Therefore, once I am back from vacation I will be putting in the effort in all of these areas of my life in order to be the best version of myself, I owe myself that much as do you!
Thank you for tuning into todays post and I hope that you have a fabulous day! XXS
As you know architecture and design are huge passions of mine and while I love looking at and learning about new projects and spaces, lately I have found myself wanting to know more about the people behind my favourite projects and designs. Today I am so excited (you have no idea just how excited) to introduce a new series to Stylishly Zen called “Behind the Design” featuring the designers and architects behind some of my favourite projects.
Today’s featured architect is Guilherme Torres. Based in Sao Paolo, Brazil Guilherme’s work is absolutely beautiful and unique. With clean lines, uncluttered aesthetic and natural materials, I would best describe his work as elevated natural luxury with a twist. Without further adieu, here is my interview with Guilherme Torres:
> Did you always know that you wanted to work in architecture and design? Has it always been your passion?
Always, ever since I was a child. Actually, I’ve always known I wanted to be an architect, and design was something that came later, to complement my creative process. If I weren’t an architect I’d be an astronaut.
> How would you describe your design aesthetic?
I like to think that I have an antenna in my head that can be directed at several sources. Now I see a common syntax in everything I do. I try to be prudent with my lines, maximising the effects whilst using very little.
> Where do you find your inspiration from?
The day to day that I create for myself is my source of inspiration. I’m very curious, and I love music, cinema and visual arts. I just absorb everything that is in my reach and let my subconscious work it out. I don’t research anything on Pinterest, for instance.
> What has been your most, challenging project so far? Why was it so challenging?
Designing furniture is always a big challenge for me. In part, almost everything has already been designed, because we have several rules to follow. In Brazil, for instance, we don’t have a greatly developed industry in this field, so the aesthetics repertoire is somewhat limited. There’s also the ergonomics factor, that defines a lot of the standards that have to be followed. The space to create, using the same materials and technology is then reduced, so I need a lot of time to research to mature my ideas.
> What has been your favourite project to date?
I have many, but I guess I would say Mangue Groove, which I did for Swarovski, and Tree House, my last house design, still unpublished.
> How long does it take for you to normally complete a project?
It depends on the project. Designing a house, for instance, takes me about 15 minutes, and a chair, about 5 years!
> Any favourite travel destinations that you like to escape too? Why?
I love exotic and nature-filled places. Places that are wild and that have new cultures, smells and experiences. Yet, there’s a lot more “mainstream” places that I don’t know yet. I guess the top three destinations on my wishlist are Japan, Egypt and Russia.
> How would you describe the design style in Brazil?
Tricky. We’ve had a golden period after the Second World War, born out of the migrants that came to Brazil to rebuild their lives. Brazilian design made in the 50s and 60s was brilliant. Ever since that our production’s been shyer and less representative. The world has also become too “pasteurised”.
> Describe your perfect day in São Paulo – what would you do? Where would you go?
My perfect day starts in my house, the best place in the world, with my dog, a Jack Russel called Bolt. But of course I’d want to go out to do something. That’s the fun of living in São Paulo: there’s anything you want! Also, I don’t really like planning.
> Where do you see yourself five years from now?
Younger, richer and humbler.
> Any words of wisdom for someone who is considering becoming an architect or designer?
Special thanks to Guilherme Torres and his colleague Renato Freddi for participating in this interview. All images courtesy of Studio Guilherme Torres.
I hope that all of you have a beautiful day! XXS