I am so happy to share the wonderful words from my incredibly talented, cool and fun friend Natalia Miyar. Natalia is an architect, designer and the founder of her London and Miami based practices, Natalia Miyar Atelier. Natalia is always full of smart, wise advice which is always delivered with huge amounts of charm. I hope this interview leaves you feeling creatively fulfilled and inspired.
What is your proudest achievement?
Launching my business 6 years ago and seeing it grow into an established company with the most incredible projects. I am always flattered and delighted when someone appoints me to work with them and to have those clients keep coming back to us makes it feels like we’re doing something right. Running a business is hard so the fact that we are still going strong is a real sense of achievement.
What sets you and your business apart from your competitors?
I have a very individual approach to design; I have always believed in the individuality of each project and that each one - whether a home or hotel - is an expression of the client, of the context and of the building and so a house style feels inappropriate to me. I approach every project this way and that mission to be unique with each thing we do is what sets us apart. Hopefully that comes across in our portfolio.
What is your vision for the future of your company?
We have just launched our first hotel, The Twenty Two which I loved designing and I would like to continue to grow our portfolio of hospitality projects. We are also opening our office in New York so we have lots of plans ahead; I never sit still! We also have a few exciting product launches in the pipeline including a collection with Fromental.
What are the most rewarding aspects of what you do?
A happy client in a beautiful space and seeing my team inspired and excited about the work we do.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I echo my client’s high expectations of me with my team but I’m also a great believer in maximizing the skills of the people who work with me. I like to present a challenge to see where their strengths lie and then craft their role to allow them to shine. One of the things I have learnt is not to put a round peg in a square hole!
Describe yourself in 3 words?
Hard working, energetic, and curious.
What is your life motto?
To try my best at everything I commit to, for my clients, for myself and for my friends.
Who inspires you and why?
I’m inspired by people who strive to live their life with optimism, effort and kindness, so it’s difficult to pinpoint one person as I’m inspired by so many. Some of the most inspiring moments are entirely unexpected; at a gathering or on a trip, I love meeting people and I’m always inspired when I hear someone is engaging their life fully. I don’t like cynics.
What book should we all read?
A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles for some levity and The Zahir by Paulo Coelho for life lessons.
Do you have any daily routines?
I try to carve out time for a workout session, a walk in the park with my dog or time for mindfulness each day. I like to keep an hour for myself because if I’m not at my best I can’t be at my best for others.
What have you learnt over the last two years?
What is your favourite possession and why?
I love my pet portrait charms by Irene Neuwirth that I wear every day. There is nothing like the love of a little dog and I wear them daily to remind me.
Tell us about your personal style?
It is an extension of things I love in interiors: a variety of texture and pattern, bold colour, clean lines and judiciously chosen accessories with character.
What are your wardrobe staples?
Well cut trousers and great knitwear from Me & Em and Jil Sander. For colourful party dresses I often turn to Erdem and The Vampire’s Wife and for shoes Jimmy Choo. I have too many cool trainers to count!
Do you collect anything?
Art, ceramics, tableware and books.
What are you favourite Instagram accounts?
@carolinefosterbrown for thoughtfully curated tablescapes, @leeschrager for amusing and off-beat mottos and @craftscouncil where I like to discover unusual craft makers.
What are your top tips for entertaining?
Entertaining is all about making people feel special and at home so I always take the time to set a beautiful table and make an effort with the food; it doesn’t need to be complicated, just abundant and flavourful. Good lighting is essential and should be a mix of dimmers and lots of candles but above all there should be a mix of people for flowing conversation. If you apply these principles for an intimate table of 4 or a party of 60 you can’t go wrong. The best compliment when entertaining is hearing that guests feel special being invited into my home.
Image copyright - Natalia Miyar Atelier & The Twenty Two Hotel
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