The Interview: Martin Waller

The Houseologists chat with founder of world-famous design brand Andrew Martin, Martin Waller, for an insight into his top interior design tips and tricks.

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The Interview

The Andrew Martin brand is famed for creating the concept of Fusion Interiors – a look that brings together a blend of traditional looks and cultures to create a stylishly eclectic, multi-layered interior style. At the heart of this look is Martin Waller, Andrew Martin’s founder and managing director whose own intrepid travels have helped to develop the Andrew Martin’s signature style.

Q: How would you describe your approach to design?

A: I would say it is like sticky toffee pudding for the home!

Q: Where do you like to begin when you are planning the design of a room?

A: It’s important to start by understanding the character of the client, the property itself and its environment.

Q: Is there one element of design that you think is the most important when you are creating a room scheme?

A: Art and artefacts, these are the key to individuality.

Martin Waller interview - Andrew Martin collection

Q: How do you go about choosing furnishings for a room?

A: When selecting the furnishings it’s all about creating a balance of pattern, texture, scale and colour.

Q: Is there a particular colour palette that you like to work with?

A: You can’t dictate colour palettes, different environments require different solutions.

Q: How do you like to bring texture into a space?

A: It’s about creating a mix; blending steel and stone, leather and hessian or velvet and silk.

Q: Are the interior trends important to you?

A: We are in a fashion industry and everything changes and moves on, you don’t want to get trapped in the 1980s!

Q: How do you go about accessorising a room?

A: Accessorising is about the things that interest you, a room should represent the personality of its owner.

Martin Waller interview - Andrew Martin Triton Beatles Chair

Q: Do you have a golden rule for pulling together an interior look?

A: Always think about the walls - there is more wall than anything else.

Q: How important is it that a home is reflective of those who live there?

This is essential. It’s all that matters.

Q: You have travelled all over the world - is there one country that really fills you with inspiration?

A: Everywhere is an inspiration to me! I was born in Kenya and Africa is full of extraordinary places – from Mali to Ethiopia.

Q: Is there a specific piece in your home that reminds you of a particular travel?

A: A Mammoth tusk which I unearthed when I was in the wastes of Siberia.

Q: How would you describe your own home's design?

A: Relaxing, idiosyncratic and mine (well, actually, it’s my daughter’s and dog’s too!).

Martin Waller interview - Andrew Martin chairs

MARTIN WALLER'S TOP INTERIOR DESIGN TIPS:

PERSONALITY
Always choose things that reflect your personality – select things that say something about you.

LOVE
Always love the pieces you buy as this is what makes the distinction between your house and your home.

DEPTH
Add depth and interest to your interior by creating groupings of multiple matching objects or pieces that are of a similar style, colour or shape.

SURPRISE
Add surprise and harmony to a space by not matching all of the interior elements, this will add diversity and pace to the room.

SCALE
Scale is essential when designing a space. Invest in large scale furniture and accessories as both height and width draw the eye up and along the space.

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