5 minutes with the Designer Boys
Inspiration, creative block and why we should chat with Mother Nature. We sit down for 5 minutes with the always animated Gavin and Warren from the Designer Boys.
How did your business emerge?
Designer Boys evolved almost 15 years ago when we first appeared on the first series of The Block. From our humble, yet high profile beginnings as initially property stylists and then interior designers, we always lacked unique decorative artworks for many of our projects. We struggled to the point where we almost felt let down by the major art companies pushing their mass produced art that didn’t fit with our design aesthetics and had quite an out of touch aesthetic. So we started creating our own ‘Signature’ style art collections and quite quickly the demand for our striking look and feel went from strength to strength within our industry. And today, we are proud to have achieved a boutique, sought after art company with more than 3500 artworks for the trade only, and where our incredible passion and creativity can continue to thrive and flourish.
What is your favourite design project in your city?
As many of you may know, we now live in the incredible Noosa hinterland and surrounded by quaint country villages all within a 30minute radius from our home. It always amazes us how we feel so incredibly at peace when we visit these country towns with their heritage-style street fascades and beautifully designed old shops, community halls, country pubs and theatres. We really have fallen in love with the old Queensland designs, like the old double storey Country Life Hotel in the tiny little township of Kin Kin… It evokes a feeling of the old world, a quieter pace of life, raw handcrafted materials and a unique heritage design from our yester year with wide overhanging verandahs. Simple Australian design our favourite.
Who would you love a 30min power meeting with?
That’s a tough question as we’re not really into speaking with high profile people, leaders or celebrities. To be honest we would much rather have a conversation with an old farmer or creative soul down the road. But if we could dream for just a minute, we’d love to have a power meeting with ‘Mother Nature’ to get in touch with her insights and how she is going to handle what’s happening in the world…. To listen to her raw emotion…
What’s the best kept secret you have found in your travels?
Our personal secret is there’s no place like home….. It’s funny we’re always excited to go away but as we’re getting older we’re realising that travel is quite hard work and sometimes not as joyful as you have in your mind. We both realised this over Xmas when we returned home early from our overseas xmas holiday, and discovered the joy of just being home and discovering the local area around us. So we don’t need to travel far. Our other little secret is that we’ve discovered is how special small breaks can be over one long break…. The little short breaks can really energise the soul and sometimes you just need this time to recharge…
Do you have any design no no's or rules?
Please hang your artwork like you’re going to be featured in a design magazine. Hanging your artwork salon style can give your design projects an amazing look and feel for very little effort and expenditure. The right curation of artwork can make or break a room.
What inspires you when you have a creative block?
It’s funny but you have to be in the right mind space to be fabulously creative. We normally find its early in the morning… after a double espresso or after a swim in the ocean… Sometimes it’s even when we’re driving in the car together and we start bouncing these incredible ideas around… Normally if we have a creative block, we normally don’t force the process. It needs to come naturally and with little effort. Sometimes, we will hop onto our mower and mow the grass – a great way to think deeply about things. Other times, we will just go down to our rainforest and lie on the huge boulders and listen to nature. It’s these decluttering moments that help break through a creative block.
One thing you can’t live without?
Personal solitude and space – it’s our luxury and we can’t live without…. Living in a cluttered noisy place with too many people really irks our soul, whilst living in the country surround by nature is what makes us prosper. It’s taken us a few major lifestyle moves to work this out… It’s funny when we lived in Potts Point overlooking the city and harbour bridge, the view made us restless and we quickly realised we needed space to make us prosper from the inside out.
What trends do you see emerging in interiors?
Certainly not the pantone colour of the year – Ultra violet!! We’ve never seen this colour work well either as a room colour or an accent colour in accessorires. Maybe deep purple in an artwork can work it’s magic.
On a more serious side, we both strongly feel people still want to feel connected to nature and the importance of merging the inside and outside will always remain a strong design feature. And as we’re starting to understand, good design with a natural aesthetic not only looks amazing, but has calming and healing properties.