06 Apr 2018
Anyone looking for an interior designer either to freshen up your current apartment or to build your next mansion knows how critical this choice is. The project’s success is in their hands, no matter how much you may want to get involved. Some designers prefer to takeover when all the heavy work is done while others are specialised in investing their time and creativity way before there are any standing walls at all in the house. We met one of them. Based in London, married and the mother of two, Lucinda is the founder of her own design agency, Lucinda Sanford Master Builder. What first caught my attention was how she would so often pair bright and lively colours with softer tones or shiny textures next to matte materials. Most of Sanford’s designs also reveal a sense of drama but in a very subtle way. There is a sense of practicality and lucidity in her approach. Revealing herself to be a mastermind at ensuring quality and beauty and finding the right balance between bespoke and high street pieces. Still each time resulting in stunning decorations in which patterned fabric has its say and colour reigns.
John Taylor: How would you best describe your style Lucinda?
Lucinda Sanford: I love classic interiors that are executed in a contemporary and clean way. Great interiors are all about multi-layering and evolving in a natural way. Houses should get better with age and become more stylish. You can’t just do everything in one moment - it needs to evolve and grow into itself.
JT: What are some of the current design and colour trends you like or would love to use more in your next projects?
LS: I love colour and I also love different shades of “white”. Paint is an amazing tool to decorate a home, if you are paying for someone to paint you might as well really make it a well thought out scheme and it can change your home. It’s the best financial investment, even if you can’t manage all your furnishings then you will have a well decorated house! There are such amazing paint companies and wallpaper companies out there today!
JT: Where do you take your inspiration from? Especially with using patterns and rich fabrics, juxtaposing shining and matte, ... Despite all these mixes you always seem to reach the perfect balance !
LS: I especially love the combination of styles. I always remember the most divine rooms that interior designer Nina Campbell had created - this amazing deep dining room and ravishing blue drawing room. I was lucky enough to do work experience with her when I was younger. She is also an inspiration as a formidable businesswoman, mother and grandmother. Rose Uniacke’s designs are so handsome and the items she sells in her Pimlico road showroom are amazing. Then of course there is fashion! It is an amazing source of inspiration for interiors, especially as it becomes more adventurous.
JT: You offer what you call “one stop shop service” to your clientele. Who are your clients and what do they like so much about your design agency?
LS: My clients are a real mix. I am so lucky when I get to work for clients with a large budget and the ability to start filling their houses with all the final pieces and interior design items. Then there are clients who need time, having invested their money into the building work and the layout of their homes. For both these approaches the one stop shop service makes sure that the end goal is clearly established right from day one. And this is really important in the design of a house particularly, if it is going to take a good few years to purchase the finishing touches. I am a great believer in designing the whole house and making it future-proof in order to reach that end goal even if it takes a whole generation …or just a few months. I think what my clients really like is my practical and sensible approach to designing and building homes. It’s lovely to have a few show pieces but like fashion I am a great believer in mixing the high street with the most exclusive of brands, vintage and new pieces…this takes great style!
Sometimes though, things do go wrong and there is no point in pretending that things don’t need a re-edit – and this is true for every profession - but when they do go wrong I can tell you honestly that I work my hardest to get the best solution possible in a calm and time efficient manner.
JT: Where did your last vacations take you?
LS: Oh, holidays! They are never the complete switch off I really want but they are still wonderful! It’s lovely to be with my husband and two daughters and we are super lucky that my whole family go away for a wonderful summer trip to Mustique Island each year. It is dreamy in every way. The tribe reunites for fun and amazing moments with my parents, three siblings and other half’s (6) and the grandchildren! We all enjoy buckets of rosé wine and I can also spot amazing houses to look at and dream about! Couldn’t ask for much more!!