Laura Stephens is a London-based interior designer with over 7 years' experience of planning and creating beautiful interiors. She trained in Interior Design at Chelsea School of Art & Design and proceeded to set up her own furniture design company before expanding into all aspects of interior design. I came across Laura whilst looking for inspiration during the lockdown and instantly clicked with her design aesthetic. As we all amateur interior designers at the moment, trying to make our homes a little cosier, I thought Laura would be the perfect interviewee for the Rama Journal.
What does your typical day look like?
Outside of lockdown I usually get my three girls (Daisy 13, Tess 11 and Skye 6) to school followed by a walk with our puppy, a long-haired mini dachshund called Lulu.
I always grab a coffee to wake up my brain and return to my home office to start work.
Sometimes I’ll do an exercise class at Barry’s Bootcamp over lunch as I find it really clears my head.
I return to work or do a site visit or sometimes I’ll schedule a client meeting for the afternoon.
I try and make sure I’m around for my girls after school to help with homework and just be present to hear about their day. I sometimes have to do admin in the early evening but always switch off around 7 pm for dinner with the family.
What is your top working-from-home productivity tip?
Ignore the housework. It is so tempting when you work from home to put on a wash or hoover but I have learnt to ignore it.
I always finish my day with an extensive to-do list for the next day. It includes both work and domestic items and I find it really calms me as I know I have everything covered for the next day.
What is your essential stationery item?
A notebook for the above! I really like to have a large A4 notebook for my to-do lists. I make notes from client meetings and even draw plans in there too. If I don’t have everything in one place I find I forget where I’ve written things down. I also like to have a smaller notebook by my bed in case I wake up in the night with something which has sprung to mind and I need to get out of my head; plus a small notebook for my handbag in case I think of anything when I’m out and about!
4. Do you have any tips to improve a home office?
It can be hard working solo at home and I find small things like a vase of flowers and a nice scented candle makes a little improvement to my space and makes me want to be there.
I am super organised and storage in my office is key. I use plastic drawers and trays from Muji to organise all my trims, fabrics and samples.
5. What is always in your bag?
Biodegradable poo bags (glamourous I know!), doggy treats, a pink Muji pen, a notebook, chewing gum, Chanel Hydra Beauty Nutrition which is the most amazing lip balm.
6. What motivates you each day?
I absolutely love my job and feel so lucky that I have found something I feel so passionate about. Pleasing my clients motivates me each day. There is nothing more satisfying than helping someone transform their environment in a way they wouldn’t have been able to do themselves.
7. What is your idea of perfect happiness?
A margarita on a sun lounger somewhere by the sea watching the sunset with my girlfriends. Failing that, a skinny latte in the sun in my back garden with a stack of interior magazines and an empty ‘to-do’ list.
8. What are you currently reading?
‘American Dirt’ by Jeanine Cummins. It is an incredible story about a mother and son in Mexico on the run from a drugs cartel and I can’t put it down!
Thank you Laura for giving us an insight into your life and I really loved your tip about ignoring the housework. It is very easy to blur the lines between work and home and so important to be disciplined when you need to work. If you want to learn more about Laura and what she offers, please head over to her website and follow her on Instagram.