This is part one of our interview with Annika Rowson. You can find part two here: trendsideas.com
Renovating or building a kitchen is as stressful as it is exciting. That’s why it’s a good idea to get in touch with expert kitchen designers like Annika Rowson from Rowson Kitchen & Joinery. We sat down with Annika to learn about what inspires her and to get some great kitchen advice.
So what originally got you into kitchen design?
I’ve always had a strong love for interior design, but what actually got me into kitchen design was my own renovation. My husband and I were renovating our own home and everything just grew from there. He was a joiner, so we had that background knowledge of joinery and the construction side of things which was really helpful getting started.
How have you found the New Plymouth renovation market? Is it quite competitive?
It’s definitely competitive. It helps that we went into the market with a really strong point of difference – being able to design, manufacture and install completely in-house. This ensures our quality and our clients appreciate the end result.
Personally, we’ve been seeing an increase in the number of people looking for quality kitchens. People looking for kit set kitchens are usually looking to sell their home, whereas our clients have been in their homes for some time or are planning their forever home and want something more personal. They’ve usually got a more flexible budget too, which means we can use higher quality materials. There’s a place for everybody – from kit set designers to bespoke designers – it’s really budget driven.
Do you find it easier to design a kitchen if clients bring some idea of what they want to you?
It’s helpful to a degree. Like for example, if clients bring a scrapbook of ideas it allows me to see their style. Patterns start to emerge if they’ve been saving ideas over a period of time.
Quite a few of my clients bring samples of what they’re looking for, but they’re also open to letting me make the decisions. I’m able to guide them and show them what I think would work best for their particular kitchen. It really comes down to trust. They put their faith in me to design and build the kitchen they want.
Do you use 3D modelling/rendering software as part of your design process?
Absolutely, it’s one of our main tools to plan how a particular kitchen will look and then present it to a client. We’re able to assemble exactly what the kitchen will look like, including material choices, which allows our clients to be able to visualise the space. The technology is only getting better too. We just recently upgraded our software and what we’re seeing now is incredible. A good render will make our clients feel really confident and comfortable with the design we’ve shown them.
Where do you go for inspiration?
For me personally, I find it really helpful to go on holiday. Travelling to new places and interacting with new cultures and spaces is a great way to broaden my design horizons to other materials and new products out there. I always manage to bring something back design-wise from a trip. In saying that, I am a little stretched for time right now and can’t travel as much as I’d like!
What are some of your favourite kitchen design trends?
At the moment I’m really into texture, using timbers and metals – things like brass and polished stainless steel. I love using coppers too. Because we’re a custom kitchen designer, we also do quite a bit of custom timber work. This allows me to create textured, elegant spaces. For splash backs, I like to use tiles or a similar product to what’s been used on the bench.
If you’d like to learn more about Annika and her company, check out their website here: http://www.rowsonkitchens.co.nz/