We caught up with Kailey Macleod, Director at One Fit Out, to gain expert tips and insights into the design world.
Follow Kailey as she builds inspired moodboards from our tile collections, while uncovering her latest trend observations and most treasured design projects with SANIPEX GROUP.
Q1. What is your primary design philosophy?
A quote that has stuck with me, and I hear myself quoting constantly, is from Bunny Williams: “If you love something, it will work. That’s the only real rule”. Whether it comes down to a candle, an outfit, or the bathroom sanitaryware you choose, you need to remind yourself that if you love it, it will always work.
Q2. You are known for creating unique and elegant interiors. How has your signature style evolved over time?
I always work with the client to encompass their design ideas into their home; it’s almost a 50/50 of what I like and what they like. A lot of people will say that they don’t have a ‘design eye’, so for me, evolving is really a case of learning to pull from each client to know what they really like and what makes their home feel like a home to them.
Q3. Which emerging interior design trends are you taking note of right now? Which trends are likely to stand the test of time?
As Dubai isn’t the forever destination for many, most clients usually hesitate to push the boundaries in the bathroom or other rooms, due to the potential impact on re-sell value. Now however, due to people having been stuck in their houses through lockdown, they are fed up with staying safe and using neutral colours and tones. People are looking for that wow factor, especially when it comes to playing with different colours in their bathrooms and kitchens.
We’ve had many bathrooms with feature walls lately. Feature walls are timeless, the way you can tie them in with the sanitary ware and Calacatta marble effect slabs. Matt Black Mixers are another iconic part of the bathroom, I don’t see them dating. Design is changing so much but I don’t see things being as short-lived as they once were.
If you are worried about a trend dating, that’s when I refer to my philosophy of ‘if you love it, it will work’ because then every time you walk into your bathroom, you’ll get a great feeling from those tiles you chose or that tap finish you adore. You can’t go wrong.
Q4. As a result of the pandemic, consumers are increasingly focused on health and wellbeing. How does this translate across projects in the various sectors you touch on?
Heading into 2022, retail and commercial sectors are realising that to gain traction and get their customers back, they need an impactful in-store experience. That’s where One Fit Out comes in, from the design point of view, from a retail shopping experience – we do it all – the one-stop stop from design to fit out.
In terms of bathrooms, we are now seeing people more willing to spend money on their own bathroom retreat rather than going to a fancy hotel.
Q5. Can you share your top three essential tips to create the ultimate luxury bathroom retreat?
- Space planning & understanding the clients’ needs. When I do a bathroom, I’m always very mindful of the space we have. It’s all about using the space to work for you – if you want a big double shower that you’ll love, then don’t compromise on a small shower just to fit in a bath if you’ll never use it, for example.
- Lighting. People are pushing that a lot more nowadays too, with interest in feature lights, recess lighting and niches…It’s all about the mood, which in turn helps you relax.
- Textures and tiles. Mood boards are key to play around with layering different materials. Essentially, we want to make sure that the person’s personality is transferred into the bathroom, whether that is through artwork, full or half-wall tiling, or painted walls etc.
Q6. We’re delighted that you use our products in the majority of your fit outs. How did you come across SANIPEX GROUP?
Having been submerged in the design industry for many years, I became well acquainted with SANIPEX GROUP here in Dubai, as well as in the UK. I would say that almost 95% of the clients I work with have already visited a BAGNODESIGN showroom and done their research, so a lot of it is a credit to you guys – your marketing and branding – as clients are very aware of the company if they are doing any form of renovation.
Q7. Which project using SANIPEXGROUP solutions are you most proud of and why?
There was a recent project, in no means our biggest project, where I needed to deliver a bathroom suitable for handicap use. I didn’t even have availability for the project at the time but when I heard the couple’s story, I knew I had to get involved. The brief was for a modern guest shower room that was also subtly practical and accessible for people with restricted mobility. I came into SANIPEX GALLERY with the client and the sales team were amazing. They gave us all the specs and matched everything that I asked; there were existing Mixers in a Matt Black finish the client wanted to keep, however a lot of the grab bars were not available in that finish, so SANIPEX GROUP actually plated them to coordinate.
The clients were so pleased with the accessibility and design, they recommended the SANIPEX GROUP and One Fit Out on a forum for renovating disabled bathrooms. It was a heart-warming project for me.
Q8. Our world is becoming increasingly digitised. How do you think continued technological innovation will impact the ways in which consumers interact with physical spaces? What do Designers need to consider to not get left behind?
No matter how much the client has an eye for design, nowadays there is a demand to see 3D renders and sample materials. The company portfolio isn’t enough alone anymore, clients want to see your social media; Instagram, TikTok and Reel video walk-throughs of the projects completed etc… Things are changing a lot; Designers need to keep their finger on the pulse and know what spikes their clients’ interests to stay relevant.
Q9. We market ourselves as a one-stop-shop with impeccable service, and in the same breath, One Fit Out’s unique selling point can be seen as similar. What would you say makes you unique?
One Fit Out is a family-grown one-stop-shop with solid points of contact. I am with you from that initial appointment right through to completion. Clients don’t deal with anyone else for the layout, design, selection of products, fit out, hand over – I am there for it all. Afterall, I am a mother, a wife, and a homeowner, I can add more than just the Designer/Project Manager perspective; I can relate and add in the practical knowledge I have gained over the 14 years of living here in Dubai.
Q10. Finally, what is in the pipeline for One Fit Out in 2022?
I’m super excited about our future at One Fit Out. We have a new showroom opening in 2022 to be able to introduce a tactile environment where we can visually display our custom kitchens, wardrobes etc…Our production line is growing. We are also expanding into landscaping and pools where there will be great synergy for SANIPEX GROUP’s Outdoor Living ranges!!
Heading into 2022, everyone is a lot happier and brighter; there is even more light and colour in design trends emerging. So, I’m looking forward to pushing a lot of boundaries in design again and keep on doing what we’re doing.
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