Interior Design, Interior Design Collective
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Interior Design Collective

Interior Design Collective

I know.

It’s been a week since I last posted.

And i’m sorry.

I think it’s fair to say my head has been well and truly buzzing this week with the amount going on at Making Spaces HQ. Not only have I got a new chunky project on the go (more on that soon), i’ve also launched the Interior Design Collective with the very lovely, and ridiculously talented, Fiona Duke from Fiona Duke Interiors.

fiona duke Interiors

Say hi to Fiona everyone **waves**

So here’s what’s been going on in the background for the last few months….

Fiona and I have been chatting about developing a network of specially selected, freelance Interior Design Creatives. Because, something like this is very much needed right now, and i’ll tell you for why.

Interiors is the new fashion for the 30-50 something crowd. Staying in is the new going out. Our homes and surroundings are what we’re spending more of our disposable income these days. And with social media platforms like Instagram, people are sharing their surroundings left right and centre and hashtagging the crap out of their photos. I’ve easily lost a couple of hours on a night just chatting to fellow interior lovers across the country as the Instagram interiors community is a pretty friendly and supportive bunch too. So for those of us with kids, who are stuck in doors on parent duty of an evening, we still feel like we can have a bit of life away from home, by virtually visiting other people’s.

The market is there. Engaged, ready and waiting. However, approachable, accessible and creative interior design is not.

The Interior Design Collective's first post. No pressure then…. The IDC's first few posts will introduce the individuals who make up the collective…. so far. First up is me, Karen Knox aka. @makingspacesnet. Myself and @fionadukeinteriors have been working away in the background for a few months now to create a rather special network of independent interior designers based around the whole of the UK. Each working by a similar ethos: Client-focused design, made affordable, achievable and frickin awesome. So, a bit about me. With no formal training in interiors, just an immense passion for good design and a 14 year career in the arts as a dancer and project manager, I jumped feet first into the interiors industry in January 2015. Over the past two and a half years I've been blown away by the wonderful clients I've worked with and the beautiful homes I've worked in. Even more so, humbled by the positive response I've received from people about my work. It's got to the point where I'm being asked to work on projects around the country, and whilst that's completely amazing, it's just not realistic or sustainable. And sometimes remote design doesn't quite cut it. Cue the Interior Design Collective. We'll be sharing our plans with you over the next few weeks. But we're excited. Very. I hope you enjoy watching it all unfold. 📷Jeremy Phillips . . . . #idc #interiordesigncollective #interiordesign #interiordesigner #interiordesigncreatives #creatives #design

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Affordable and creative client-led Interior Design has never been in greater demand. But it’s still not easy to find those interior designers out there that work with real people, in real homes with realistic budgets. You know how I know this? Because Fiona and I have spent the last few months looking for them. And we know where to look too! How is your average person out there working full time with a family supposed to find time to sift through endless website searches and Houzz accounts?

Hello ! Well done Karen 🙌🏽. Yes, Karen @makingspacesnet and I @fionadukeinteriors have been busy planning this special network of independent interior designers who will be based around the UK. So, a bit about me. How did I end up in design? Well, my previous working life was spent in recruitment and marketing but I had always had an enormous passion for design. With just a part-time design certificate under my belt, like Karen, I pretty much threw myself wholeheartedly into the design industry. Hard work and determination over the last 3 years has enabled me to be involved in some seriously amazing projects to which I am most grateful. I am so excited about our plans for the Interior Design Collective and sharing them with you over the coming weeks. Can't wait for you to come onboard and share the journey. Photo|design by Fiona Duke Interiors 📷 @rachaels1 . . . . #interiordesigncollective #interiordesign #idc #design #creatives #interiordesigner #interiors #interiors4all

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The amount of emails I have every week from people all over the country asking me for consultations and design work is a bit bonkers. And whilst I’d love to be able to work with everyone, it’s just not possible. I’ve tried and it’s flipping hard. Sometimes I can and have worked remotely with clients, which takes me onto “E-Design” a rapidly growing side-line business for a lot of Interior Designers. Advances in technology have allowed online design services to be successfully brought to the market, making interior design more accessible, convenient and affordable. However, there are still restrictions in this modern-day digital age and you still can’t really beat fully interactive, face to face communication, especially for those larger, more detailed projects.

So what do I do when I get an enquiry from London, Cumbria or Essex? I want to be able to help them out, but being in Leeds limits the impact I can make from 200+ miles away. Making Spaces just can’t work nationally, but the Interior Design Collective can. I want to be able to pass the people i’m not able to work with on to a designer who can. Someone who approaches their work in the same way, with similar working practices, ethos and charges. And this is where the idea of the Interior Design Collective was born.

Taking the mic 1-2… Introducing myself, Hi! I'm @emiliefournetinteriors and I'm equally proud, humbled and honoured to have been asked to join the hottest collective in town @interiordesigncollective . Much like the awesomely talented @fionadukeinteriors and @makingspacesnet, I started my Interior Design journey back in 2014 with not much formal training but a lifelong passion for Interiors, design and creativity. I've been so lucky to work with amazing clients who trusted me with their homes. There is still nothing more exciting to me than seeing a space transformed into a life-enhancing environment full of personality. I'm so excited to be joining the amazing people of the #idc Thank you for having me. . . . #interiordesigner #interiordesign #interiordesigncollective #eclecticinteriors #howiboho #urbanjungle #jungalowstyle #vintage #interiors

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The Interior Design Collective brings together all of those super cool, hard working interior design creatives that are working their butts off to run a business in an industry that is growing faster than we can keep up with. We find em, so you don’t have to.

Hello! Kate here from @katelovejoy. I've been lucky enough to have worked in design my whole career, having graduated as a film designer 20 years ago (OMG!) The film industry was a great place to cut my teeth but NOTHING beats the fulfilment of designing a space together with my client and knowing that it's made a difference to how they live or work in it.  Colour plays a massive part in my projects and I'm fascinated by the psychology behind it and how it affects you emotionally.  Like Emilie, I'm feeling very honoured to be part of the exciting and dynamic @interiordesigncollective. Thank you to @makingspacesnet and @fionadukeinteriors for bringing together like minds who are challenging the preconceptions of interior design! . . . . #idc #interiordesigncollective #interiordesign #interiordesigner #colourpsychology #design #interiors

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Fiona and I have been searching high and low across the UK for individuals that are a perfect fit both style and ethos wise. Here’s what we’ve been looking for:

  • Independent interior designers, with a:
  • Website with a portfolio of projects
  • Instagram account
  • Houzz account so we can keep an eye on reviews
  • A certain something…. a style, a vibe, an open-ness to being and doing things a little differently

And we will continue to scour the country to find other independent Interior Design Creatives that will enhance and compliment our small but perfectly formed growing network. We hope that by next year we will have a maximum of 30 members and a website launch to showcase our awesome members and explain in more detail what we’re all about and our plans for the future.

Hello everyone – it's 2 for the price of 1 @joanhome.  We are sisters, based in North Yorkshire, who share a passion for well designed, beautifully styled interiors. Having worked independently for many years in the arts, media and interior design fields we came together in 2016 to launch @joanhome. We love honest, timeless antique and vintage furniture and use it throughout our projects mixing old and new.  Prints, textures, light, dark, colours, neutrals, we embrace it all. We like to work closely with our clients to help them create appealing, workable, individual living spaces. We are thrilled to be part of the @interiordesigncollective, thanks for having us. Photo: @evewanders . . . #interiors #interiordesign #kitchen #realhomes #instahome #designupnorth #idc #interiordesigncollective #interiordesigner

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So that’s what’s been bubbling away in the background for the last few months peeps. Despite not officially launching until later this year, we opened the Interior Design Collective’s Instagram account on Sunday and the response so far has been all kinds of awesome.

Hey, I'm Lisa from @bornandbredstudio. I'm thrilled to be part of a small selection of talented and passionate creatives. Thanks @interiordesigncollective for the invite! 🙌🏻 A little about moi and Born & Bred… After a successful career in fashion I made the transition into the fabulous world of interiors. I felt there was a disconnect in the traditional (stuffy) world of interiors and how it was perceived for your average family who really care about their surroundings. Interior design has a (warranted and well earned) reputation as something for the elite and a style that can't be duplicated in an average family house or flat (what do you mean you don't own a town house in Belgravia or a private Jet?). We're all busy, we all like nice things and we all want a little space for us. We may not have the time nor the inclination to want to do it ourself. That's where us designers come in! We embrace modest, stylish family homes, where kids scribble on walls and adults spill red wine on velvet sofas! 😉 I'm really looking forward to working with and hearing more from the #interiordesigncollective community! 📷 #annastathaki . . . #interiordesigner #interiordesign #design #realhomes #idc #interiors4all #kitchen #interiors123 #familylife

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We’ve been introducing our members one by one to kick off, so you can discover everyone who’s part of the collective so far and see some of their work. It’s got such a good vibe already. Fiona and I are super excited about our plans further down the line. Click the logo below to give us a follow on Instagram and join us on the journey.

Interior Design Collective

So then, I’d absolutely love to know what you guys think about our plans, have I explained it well enough? Any questions? Please do let me know.


  1. Oh my god Karen this is bloody AMAZING!! I’m so freaking proud of you for coming up with such a damn good idea. And now I kinda wish I was an actual interior designer so I can join you guys. So much damn talent you’ve shared here and now I’m running off to follow all of them on IG. Love this idea and have no doubt it’ll be a huge success! xxx

    • Karen Knox says

      Yeah yeah yeah!! I’m so glad you get it, and like the whole concept. Once the IDC is all set up, I can’t wait to move forward with the next steps. It’s all v exciting. We’ve got some fab members so far!! Big thanks Ms D, it means lot xx

  2. Sorry it’s taken me a while to comment, but can I give you a big HELL YEAH! I know I can’t take advantage of this excellent initiative what with being overseas and all, but this is simply fabulous and I wish you all the very best with it!! Already enjoying the insta feed 🙂

    • Karen Knox says

      Thanks so much Jill! Who knows… maybe in years to come the IDC will be “international baby”.
      So glad you’re enjoying the insta-feed. And thanks again, I really appreciate your support!!

  3. A huge well done to you on the launch of the IDC, what an absolutely brilliant idea! The talent is immense, as evidenced by the absolutely gorgeous instagram feed! xx

    • Karen Knox says

      Yay! So glad you like the idea. We’re really excited by it. Many thanks for following us. I can’t believe we’re nearly at 1000 followers in just over a week. Bonkers!xx

  4. Such a brilliant idea, Karen – and you’re so right in your thinking, it’s a collective that’s been waiting to happen. I think you should put out a press release too, if you haven’t already?! Exciting times… Xx

    • Karen Knox says

      Ooh no, but that’s a good idea. How do you even do that?x

  5. What a fantastic idea! There is definitely a gap in the market. As I’ve said so many times before, if we were closer I’d have you do my whole flat. So having a network of like minded people all over the country will be just brilliant. Go you!!! And go IDC!!!

  6. How exciting! What a wonderful idea Karen – I look forward to seeing it all unfold and develop, whilst discovering plenty of new interior designers to lust over on Intstagram 🙂 Wishing you the very best of luck x

  7. what a great idea! it’s so hard to even know where to start, particularly outside of london and on a more manageable budget than some of the real high end work. Great stuff, look forward to reading more about it!

  8. Susan says

    I’m not a designer, just interested in this world, but I love a couple of podcasts aimed at designers- firstly LuAnn Nigara on A well designed business and secondly Nick May on The chaise longue. Both American but very entertaining and informative.

  9. How very exciting, what a fantastic idea and a lovely support network for designers! I’m in the process of setting up my own interior design business, similarly offering people advice on decoration projects. I have my first client and presented the designs this week and they loved it! Such a buzz. Would love to join once I’m a bit more established 🙂 xxx

    • Karen Knox says

      Oh that’s great news Cate. All the very best for your next venture. I’m sure you’ll nail it! 🙂 x

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