Q&A with Interior Fusion Kitchens | Lansdowne Boards

25 May 2020

Q&A with Interior Fusion Kitchens

We chatted to Jodie from Interior Fusion Kitchens recently to find out a bit more about her company, her ethos and how she got started in kitchen design.

Jodie had her start in kitchen design 19 years ago, her time in the industry even included a few years at Lansdowne Boards as our resident kitchen designer (we miss her every day!). Four years ago she took a bold step to go out on her own and her brand has gone from strength to strength since then with contracts reaching as far as the Seychelles! Jodie’s sought after style, attention to detail and incredible work ethic keeps customers coming back time and again! Read on to find out a bit more about her, some tips and tricks for those wanting to do it themselves and more . . .

Q: What or who inspired you to choose a career in interiors and kitchen design?

A: When I was 19, an amazing couple who owned a kitchen company saw my potential and took a chance on me. They trained me for a year, combining my creativity and technical skills, and after that I started my design adventure.

Q: Tell us a little about Interior Fusion & how you got started?

A: I have been designing for 19 years. Four years ago, I had my second child and decided I wanted to create and install my own creations in my own time. I needed to be flexible, so Interior Fusion started as a dream and has grown from strength to strength.

Q: Would you say you have a specific style?

A: I do have signature items that I carry though in my designs, but those are more functional features. The look of the kitchen depends on the client and their needs.

Q: What most inspires you and your work?

A: I’m motivated by the thought of making my client happy. I have never had an unhappy client, so what inspires and motivates me is the end of the project and the client's satisfaction.

Q: Where do you go to spot new styles?

A: I take bits and pieces of inspiration from everywhere. I have an awesome group of suppliers who do extensive research on trends and bring in innovative and creative new looks/finishes/textures/gadgets etc. I also love Houzz and Pinterest and the internet in general as the articles out there are informative and inspiring.

Q: What are some of your biggest design influences?

A: Many different things will influence our designs, whether we realize it or not. Everything we do and everything we are influences our approach to design, from the tools we use in the kitchen to the hobbies we have, the food we cook, and the way we eat. That's a good thing as it leads to each of us being different designers, with different solutions, and different styles.

Personally, one of my biggest influences is that I’m a mother and wife myself. I enjoy spending time in my own kitchen, and I understand the personal irritations people feel in their day-to-day lives when it comes to cooking, storing groceries, and cleaning in the kitchen. My hands-on, real life experience in the kitchen means I know how to make a space that is convenient, functional, and beautiful for others.

Q: Any interesting projects you're working on at the moment?

A: A beautiful old historic house in Stellenbosch on a wine farm. The design has a genuine, farmhouse feel with a touch of modern luxury for the kitchen as well as the five bedrooms, which each have hand-painted shaker doors in an off-white.

Q: What has been your most exciting project to date and why?

A: We designed and installed all the joinery in a house in the Seychelles. It consisted of two kitchens, inside and outside kitchen, scullery, six bedrooms, study, playroom, and wine cellar. I got to fly out and experience the beauty of the Seychelles while working on the design, and the final product was magnificent.

Q: What advice do you have for those looking to remodel their kitchen?

A: A kitchen specialist is extremely important. The amount of knowledge and experience they bring to the table will make your kitchen revamp journey so much more pleasant with one than without - and they can save you plenty of time and money in the long-run.

Q: Share your simplest décor tip?

A: Keep your canvas neutral and add in colour on items you can easily change, such as decor items and accessories. This way, you are not tied down and it won’t impact re-sale on your home.

Q: Is there something that you simply will never ever do when it comes to interiors - something you would avoid or advise your client to avoid?

A: Never get your builder to place your points (plumbing and electrical) without designing your kitchen first. You never know where you’ll need your plumbing or plug points the most until your kitchen layout is finished. If you do your points first, it will cost you extra in the long run when your points have to move again.

Q: What are your go to basics when you're designing?

A: Kitchen design always focused on the "working triangle" - the sink, the fridge, and the stove, which are the three essentials for every kitchen. However, we’ve evolved from that. The new “triangle” that I work off includes workspace, storage, and a coffee/tea area. Once I ensure that there’s enough workspace and storage space for groceries, I create a coffee/tea area, as that’s essential for many of us.

Q: What would you tell someone who doesn't have a big budget? How do you work around this to achieve their dream design?

A: I would suggest letting your designer know what your budget is upfront. A good designer can give your kitchen that “wow” effect while keeping costs within reason.

Q: What advice would you give to those out there who would like to "do it themselves" and design and build their kitchen from scratch?

A: This is achievable! You do need a professional to do the design for you, as this will save you stress in the long run. You should also use a company like Lansdowne Boards, which can offer the tools you’ll need to make this happen.

Q: What are your thoughts on Covid-19 and its effect on us and our industry? Where do you see the industry moving after all of this?

A: I think Covid-19 has already affected each and every one of us in one way or another. I think our industry needs to adapt and make things work as best as they can. I believe our industry can carry on strong, but we’ll all need to adhere to social distancing and other responsible practices. From our side, we are still designing and doing quotes for clients, and will process orders and install as the Levels improve. I have also been doing designs for the "do it themselves" clients during lockdown, they send their measurements and specs and we work our 3D magic.

Q: Do you have any advice for those starting out in the industry now or wanting to get into a career as a kitchen designer?

A: I would encourage you to do an interior design course. This will introduce you to the design world and will get you a foot in the door at a kitchen company that will be willing to train you to be a kitchen specialist.

Below we have included images from a few of Jodie's stunning kitchens . . . each image will take you to the relevant blog that has all of the supplier details as well as customer requirements and plenty more images to get you inspired . . .

Una Bellissimo Cucina all the way in Cape TownUna Bellissimo Cucina all the way in Cape Town

Chapman's Bay EstateChapman's Bay Estate Sleek Modern Lines & A Monochrome Palette in Camps BaySleek Modern Lines & A Monochrome Palette in Camps Bay

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