Name, Location, Occupation
Kyla Bidgood Interior Design
Victoria & Vancouver, BC
Registered Interior Designer|
Please describe your workspace:
My studio is at home; a 19th century converted heritage house in Esquimalt. With ample natural light, harbor views, high ceilings, original moldings and a recently renovated office area, it’s a perfect haven for concentrated work. But when I need a little stimulation I get out of the house and work remotely to meet up with other designers for work sessions. At the moment I’m writing this sitting on MediaCore’s oversized sectional in their staff lounge (a office project I completed last year). I also spend quite a bit of time on the go; in site meetings, supplier showrooms or in Vancouver where half of my work is currently based.
What are you working on right now?
Today I’m working on a new Blenz Coffee location under construction in False Creek, my 4th project with the Vancouver based franchise. Branded interiors is a genre of design I have a real love for, creating a seamless language that encompasses not only the space but all the fixings; from window graphics & custom wallpapers, to menu boards, finishes, furniture and signage. Other projects currently underway include a pharmacy, a tech office in the UK, a kitchen reno and two new construction single family homes which I’ve been enlisted to design everything from exterior finishes, floor plans, fixtures, finishes, kitchens & bathrooms.
What has been your most rewarding project to date?
First that comes to mind is a series of projects I’ve completed with my oldest clients. I met them when they were newly weds, moving into their first house in 2006, giddy in love and eager to create a life and a home together. We hit it off instantly, they are two of the most genuinely nice people I’ve met, and they were excited and open to new ideas. The entire process was filled with laughter and hugs, and the result is a space that is uniquely theirs. Since then I’ve had the pleasure of working with them to fully renovate their dental practice, create a nursery for their growing family, and most recently a full renovation of their vacation property in Mt. Washington. Getting to know them over the years we’ve become friends, and as a result I’ve been able to create spaces that perfectly reflect their values, personalities and lifestyle. Relationships like this are the reason I love what I do. There is absolutely no greater reward than a speechless, elated beyond control client at the end of a project, and knowing I’ve delivered a space that fits them better than their favorite pair of jeans.
Which designers and artists inspire you?
Where to start…
Interior Designers: Michelle Biggar (Office of Mcfarlane Biggar) & Studio O+A for their innovation
Architect of yore: Richard Neutra for his bright & airy modernism
Interior Stylist: Emily Henderson, modern vintage perfectionist
Visionary: Grace Coddington, Vogue stylist and legend
Artists of yore: Egon Schiele, Cy Twombly
Artists now: Kirra Jamison (colour & pattern), Leah Yerpe (movement), David Burdeny (architecture) … art is a huge source of inspiration for me, I could go on but I’ll stop myself there
Boss ladies: Jenna Lyons, the beauty and brain that transformed J.Crew’s brand & Sheryl Sandberg, Facebooks outspoken, all-in COO
Has there been a defining moment or turning point when you realized what you wanted to do for a living?
I knew from a young age I had an eye for putting things together. A high school aptitude test confirmed my career choice., but it wasn’t until I started researching the profession that I realized I had found my true calling. Interior design feeds all parts of me: creator, entrepreneur, and extrovert. And with every project and client being vastly different from the next, no day is ever repeated. I am constantly being challenged by new situations and ideas.
What do you think is the most difficult aspect of working in design?
Unrealistic budgets and time frames. Clients new to the world of construction and finishes can be naïve to the price tag and time frame that comes with quality, not to mention the design process itself. A whipped together, undeveloped concept is a missed opportunity to create something truly interesting and original, and short lead times means limited options for finishes, furnishings and fabrication. Innovation cannot be done fast and cheap.
What are you reading at the moment?
Make Space is an interesting read on creating spaces that encourage collaboration and creativity in the workplace. Also making my way through Case Study Houses which catalogs not only plans and beautiful photos but sketches and notes on the deign process that fueled the post war modern housing boom.
What websites do you visit for inspiration?
Daily I check:
Yellow Trace http://www.yellowtrace.com.au/
The Design Files http://thedesignfiles.net/
Miss Moss http://www.missmoss.co.za/
The Selby http://theselby.com/
What are your simplest daily pleasures?
Even my most pressing deadlines get paused to take my 10 year old pooch Tucker for a stroll. He’s my little family and taking a time out to love and care for the little gaffer is a daily ritual that keeps me sane and in tune with what’s really important.
I’m also a night hawk, and there’s something magical that takes place in the wee morning hours when there are no emails coming in, no calls or texts distracting you, where you don’t feel obliged to be doing anything other than what you ‘re doing in that moment. I find some of my most creative ideas come to me when I’m wasting time in the middle of the night.
Where do you see yourself in ten years?
I love my practice and focus on interiors, but collaborating with professionals in other fields always opens my mind to possibilities I would never have come to on my own. My long term goal is to form a collective with like minded creatives, people who are equally passionate about space and design as I am and who are willing to step off the beaten path to create concepts that are out of the box and daring. Ideally this would be a full service design-build firm, including an architect, landscape designer, installation artist, graphic designer, industrial designer and builder, leaving no project detail overlooked. The spatial possibilities of this dream team would be boundless!