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After developing a passion for art and photography during her childhood, Celia Sawyer’s creative instincts led her to completely refurbish a London property she owned. Her artistic endeavour was admired by many guests, who would then go on to ask her to redesign their homes. These events from more than 20 years ago resulted in her opening her own company, Celia Sawyer Interior Architecture And Design in order to accommodate her ever-growing client base.
Since her first foray into the world of design, Celia Sawyer has gained widespread recognition for her work, winning Inspirational Woman of the Year 2013, a place in the Top 100 Most Influential British Entrepreneurs and a place in the Top 250 Most Powerful Women Leaders.
She credits her success to persistence and self-belief, but advises those that wish to follow in her path that hard work is the most important factor in any form of achievement. She also believes that it is vital to listen to those with more experience when they have wisdom to impart, and to apply their knowledge to your own work. But according to Sawyer, the most important piece of advice to remember is to know your outcome. She says: “I was told this years ago, before you do anything, or say anything, know what result you want to achieve at the end of it…. It can really stop you messing up on a phone call or email too, and it is my favourite piece of advice.”
Before her beginnings as a designer, Celia Sawyer also dealt in art and collectables. This has translated in her present day work, where she often incorporates pieces that she feels fit with her clients’ personalities, lifestyles and aesthetics.
Sawyer cites nature as being her main inspiration, taking elements such as the shadow cast by grass in sunlight and translating them into a luxury interior for high end clients. Her work has seen her complete projects for a varied clientele, from wealthy individuals to smaller commercial projects and even Royalty.
But Celia Sawyer always strives to push herself. Her favourite project was designing the interior of a helicopter, as it came with the added challenge of working is a very limited amount of space. Additionally, she was conscious of the typically “beige” interiors of helicopters and wanted to take a fresh and original approach.
For Sawyer, aesthetics are only part of the design process. She understands the frustration of staying in a hotel, only to find a lack of sockets for a hairdryer in a bathroom. For her, functionality and flow are another essential element in design. It’s for this reason that she would also like to try her hand at designing rooms in boutique hotels, in order to merge these two important aspects.
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