Yasmin Chopin is an interior designer and owner of Yasmin Chopin Interior Design, where she gets involved in all manor of weird and wonderful projects. A designer, writer, teacher and speaker - Yasmin adores the world of interior design and loves nothing more than sharing her inspiration with her readers. A “property junkie” at heart and graduate of London’s Inchbald School of Design, we are happy to bring you the Designer Insights of Yasmin Chopin.
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1) In your own words describe your unique style and creative aesthetic?
I am impressed by the avant-garde, those who forge ahead with their own art and beliefs even when the general populace is opposed. It gives me confidence to keep moving forward in what I sometimes feel is a bit of a crusade; that is to encourage people to live with more colour.
2) When starting a new project, what is your creative process?
Every new project starts with a practical difficulty to overcome such as finding more space or dealing with an awkward area in the home. Before I start the creative process in my imagination I take away everything except that problem. Then, working on my drawing board, I test out options trying not to put barriers back into the process. In this way I can be as creative as possible and invariably come up with something original. If it doesn’t come easy I sleep on it and the next morning, just as I wake, I take my mind back to the problem; there’s often a Eureka moment!
3) Out of the creative people you have worked with, who is it that you respect and admire the most?
I feel it is incumbent on people like myself, who help clients with buying decisions, to find and put forward individual artists, craftspeople and designers who live and work in Britain. I enjoy working with designer-maker creatives who produce high quality work that is accessible in terms of price. The bespoke artisan market is thriving and whether it’s furniture, fabrics or accessories, I know there is someone out there who can produce exactly what I need, which gives me the artistic freedom to create interesting and unusual interiors for my clients.
4) When looking for inspiration is there a particular thing you do to get inspired?
My inspiration for a project always comes from the client. I have to find out what makes the client happy, excited and comfortable. There’s quite a bit of psychology involved in getting a design right for a client after all there’s no point making something beautiful if they won't like it. In a recent project my inspiration was a picture in the client’s home described by the couple as being a recent purchase they both really loved. I loved it too and thus it became my starting point.
5) What has brought you to this point in your career? And what is your advice for people looking to follow in your footsteps?
I’d never have thought I would become an interior designer when I started out but looking back it was clear that I’m in the right place. My business career took me through a few decades of hard slog while I brought up a family and dabbled in property development. I’ve had the opportunity to re-focus my career now and, as a mature student, I got my training at one of the best design schools in London. Now i can enjoy using both sides of my brain, the creative and the organised, and it feels really good. For those following in my footsteps I have lots of advice but in a few words I’d say ‘be aware that interior design work is complex and competitive, it’s not for the faint-hearted’.