Freeworld Design Centre

By Marica

I’m sure you all have heard the name Freeworld Design Centre been thrown around of late. In fact, the South African blogosphere has been abuzz with Freeworld.

While doing some research for one of our Decorex blog posts, Rose & I came across the Freeworld Design Centre’s blog (a very good read, by the way) and even after reading their “About Us” page we still had a good “kop-krap” trying to fathom what exactly they do…

You might recognize these beautiful exhibition “pods” – it’s part of Freeworld’s current exhibition and all the designers used Freeworld products and finishes (check out this Lanalou Style post – she took some gorgeous pics).

So recently, on another one of our Town Days, Rose and I decided to pop into Freeworld’s BEAUTIFUL showroom / studio to have a good look-around. Sameenah, one of Freeworld’s accommodating interior designers, gave us a tour and explained their services to us (it was a lightbulb moment).

Okay so let me give you the skinny on Freeworld Design Centre…

They are part of Freeworld Coatings Ltd (the guys who own Plascon, Midas, Earthcote, etc.). The Centre provides a decor consultation and 3D rendering service for architects, interior designers and decorators, property developers and owners. The Freeworld Design Centre is staffed by a team of leading local stylists, decor consultants and interior designers who in turn, are supported by top client service representatives from Plascon and Midas Earthcote. Now, if you are in the built-environment trade listen very carefully. This is how we procured their help and so can you…it is truly a valuable resource:

We chose the almost completed bedroom of one of our clients. The majority of the bedroom was upholstered in a very bold patterned fabric and the space contained many shiny, glam accents.

We felt that our client’s master bedroom needed a little of oomph. Maybe a very deep blue to neutralise and compliment the existing gold and bling? The problem though – how do we convince our client to paint the half of her bedroom in an indigo colour…even I would question such a bold colour choice. (Just a note to the reader – this bedroom is huge and can accommodate such a dark colour easily.)

We decided to book an appointment with a Freeworld consultant to discuss possible colour selections for the project.

I chatted with Kerstin, our helpful Freeworld consultant, about what we had in mind, and showed her photos of the bedroom thus far as well as samples of the various fabrics used in the room. She agreed that a bold deep blue would look smashing and assisted me in finding three blues that would complement and match the upholstery fabric.

I handed our photos over to the Freeworld team who then digitally “painted” selected walls. They work with the precise RGB code of the paint sample to get the finished digital colour as close to the real deal as possible. Depending on the project requirements, they can also add the accurate colour to your existing 3D model or draw up a complete 3D from scratch to illustrate the full effect.

Thus, you get a peak at how beautiful a bold blue could look in the space. We later added the paint colour to our 3D model and presented the whole lot to our client (who went for it hook, line and sinker).

Thanks Freeworld Design Centre!

Find their website: here, and be sure to check out their blog: here – it’s very inspirational and filled with useful tidbits.

Decorex CT 2011 – Interior Attractions With Lasting Impressions

Quite a few people have asked for my opinion on Decorex 2011. My response has been that for me it was an absolute pleasure, tiring like most expos, but I derived a great deal of benefit from it, being a total interiors junkie.   “You get out of it, what you came to look for” as there are so many interior disciplines featured at this expo

Image via Decorex

Getting connected – that I would say is the total benefit that I derived from trawling the exhibition stands at Decorex 2011. Connected with the most talented local retailers, manufacturers, suppliers, magazines, interior decorators /designers and the more. Decorex brings all these people into one space, they connect with us and we connect with them. Some friends we know and others are new to us.  That is what attracts me. Awesome!

Image via Decorex

I went into inspiration overload (not to mention sensory overload) but walking away from Decorex I could once again indulge that Proudly South African sensation that I often have.  We are managing to keep abreast of many a global trend, but at the same time, we are adding our unique South Africa flavour.

Bos Tea House. Image via Decorex

Speaking of flavour – like at Indaba, there was no escaping the BOS ICE TEA brand.  There they were large as life, in the most unique Tea Lounge, designed by the clever Neil Stemmet of Koncept Designs – offering the people of Cape Town such a unique ‘café’ experience.   Who would have thought that Ice Tea would find collaboration with the world of interiors, but they have.  The bright colours of the BOS brand oozed out from every corner.  However, my lasting impression – sensational – maybe too sensational.  This is where my sensory overload just went off the map.  As much as I wanted to, I just could not take in all the stunning details – there were too many of them concentrated in one space. Maybe it will happen for me next time.

Boutique Plascon Paint Store. Image via Freeworld Design Centre

One of the exhibit partners at the Tea Lounge was a little Plascon Paint Boutique by Freeworld Design Centre.  Being in the paint business, they put together some entertaining objects, painted in soft trendy colours.  Inspirational again.

On Site Gallery. Image via Visi

In the furniture lines, I was glad to see On Site Gallery opening up their wares to the public.  Their retail outlet in the Palms is a must do and a ‘junkie’ fix for me.

Yaku - Design For Kids - Images via Yaku

From furniture past to furniture present, a newbie in children’s furniture is YAKU.  Having been fortunate enough to design some trendy children’s rooms, I appreciate that YAKU has given us yet another affordable outlet to source from.

Hamilton's Spray Gun Thingy

Although I don’t mind putting my hand to a paint job, I am not wild about it not being a very ‘handy’ person.  I guess that is what attracted me to the exhibition of Hamilton Brands spray gun thingy. Do-it-yourself, without the paint drips all over the place, including your hair.  I have a vision of myself, clutching one of these super duper spray paint thingies, as I go about up-cycling some of my furniture –  is that a sigh of relief I hear my husband breathing in the background?

Don’t go away! More  awesome Decorex 2011 stuff to follow! Stay tuned for Decorex 2011 Report 2!