Driven by a desire to combine the rigours of her architectural training with creative flair, Charu Gandhi set up multidisciplinary design studio Elicyon in 2014. Since then, the Kensington-based practice has designed some of the finest London townhouses, remote spa villas, country residences, penthouses and hotels across the globe for its high net-worth roll call of clients. Today, together with Creative Director Cecilia Halling and Projects Director David Harris, Charu leads a team of experienced designers, architects and project managers.
The studio relishes the chance to delve into the heart of each brief, establishing a personalised design language that is appropriate to the client, project, location, architecture and history of a building. ‘Our process as a team is journey-based and one we are constantly refining depending on the brief and the overall concept,’ says Charu. ‘We want each client to fall in love with design, with craft, and to have a sense of self-discovery.’ In 2020, the studio installed an impressive 11 projects, deftly overcoming the numerous challenges presented during the Covid-19 pandemic. As the home becomes an ever more important haven, the team is working in collaboration with a growing roster of clients to design their dream spaces.
As a studio, we are focussing on natural materials such as linen, wool, rattan and light blonde timbers
Charu is also finding that the move away from silk and sheen-textured fabrics continues. ‘As a studio we are focusing on natural materials such as linen, wool, rattan and light blonde timbers,’ she continues. ‘Also, a lot of clients are in favour of new neutrals, so these feature heavily on our mood boards. We typically start with a fairly muted ivory base and then add a scattering of additional tones which might include rust, pink, beige, mustard, terracotta or burnt orange.’
A bolder approach is being seen when it comes to pattern with skilfully clashing prints and geometric monochrome styles becoming more widely used, and contrasting scale featuring across wallpapers and upholstery. ‘Something else I think is special is the element of surprise. For example, a piece of furniture may appear formal on the outside but have a pop of colour on the inside as a wow factor,’ she concludes. ‘It’s important as a designer to be playful and push the boundaries so clients can enjoy those unique moments in their homes.’
Elicyon First Floor, Avon House, Avonmore Road, Kensington Village, London, W14 8TS +44 (0)20 3772 0011
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