Life & Style

Space for spurt of ideas

Takbir Fatima (right),Abeer Fatima (left) and Yasmeen Vazeer  

üSituated between a school and college, the white building looks like any other complex until you push open the front door. The multi-disciplinary architecture firm DesignAware is not like your regular architectural firm and does not boast of a vast expanse filled with employees glued to their workspaces. In a limited space, they have managed to create an environment in such a way that not just the employees even visitors feel inspired to think out of the box.

DesignAware comprises a team of three women headed by director Takbir Fatima, her sister Abeer Fatima who is the lead interior designer and another interior designer Yasmeen Vazeer.

The studio was set up three years ago. “We had a low budget and our focus was to custom design. We didn’t want to buy anything from the market. Everything you see here is custom-made except the chairs and computers,” smiles Takbir and reveals that the studio was initially a house, in a bad condition. “It was our first renovation project,” she recalls. “The entire building was in bad shape; the roof was falling and flooring was not properly done. We redesigned it and wanted the space to be a comfort zone which is conducive to productivity and also makes employees feel at home because one spends more time at office than home.”

We look at the windows and their carved motifs. “The design of the windows was quite archaic so we removed the grill and designed it on the computer, using a 3D module software. We used this undulating surface and digital fabrication to cut and install these design elements here,” she explains, adding, “There is a lot of privacy as people can’t look in through this.” The window grill they took down was not thrown away; instead it became a revolving table with interlocking plywood shelves. The main hall leads to a small pantry which offers the recreational space. Renovation work is still going on here.

DesignAware started with the design of 3D printed and laser cut wearables and the team now designs furniture, lighting as well as lifestyle accessories. A complex web-like structure made of painted straws and attached with wires, hangs on the ceiling. There is also a model of a charity school which the firm has recently created for the children who live near Golconda. A library with books and display of wearables is for those who want to take a break and refresh. The director’s small room is done up with an innovative touch.

The wooden doors of the office have been converted into black boards with the use of black matt paint. The open workstations also help the numerous interns who come from architectural colleges from Hyderabad and other cities to work here. “Sometimes we have classes and workshops here and this space is ideal for it. The tables we have here are a few inches lower so that women can also feel comfortable,” she states.

With a blend of white, black and pops of orange, there is a lot of colour co-ordination and the interiors exude vibrancy. “White is serene, pops of orange gives energy and black is limited. These are our brand colours. Our fans are also in orange colour. We painted it,” say the team showing a tree near the gate, “Nature also follows our theme. This tree gives orange flowers, though not in this season.” (Companies who want to be featured in the column can write in to hydmetroplus@thehindu.co.in)

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Printable version | Apr 21, 2021 8:18:46 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/design-and-architecture-firm-designaware-pulsates-with-a-creative-environment/article19369317.ece

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