Name: Julie Brownson and Anna Romanenko
Company: Barbarella Studio
Age: Julie: 47, Anna 39
Course: Full Time Diploma Interior Design, graduated July 2014
What were you doing before KLC and why did you decide to study at the school?
Before the KLC, Julie practiced as a commercial lawyer in London for over 15 years. After starting a family Julie realised she had no passion for the law, she took a short introduction to Interior Design Course at KLC, which lead to her pursuing the Full Time Diploma course.
Anna was a Financial Director in Russia for 10 years prior studying at KLC. Anna completed a one year Diploma in Interior Architecture in Russia before deciding to take the Full Time Diploma Interior Design Course at KLC in London. Anna was drawn to KLC’s incredible network of industry contacts and the broad scope of the course.
Can you identify some of the highlights and challenges of your time at KLC?
A highlight of the Diploma course for Julie was understanding how a solid concept can inform every aspect of a design. Also winning the Twickenham Studios reception area competition and actually getting through the year!
One thing Julie struggled with was understanding that sometimes you have to drop a feature or aspect that you really love because you simply can’t make it work.
During her year at KLC Anna loved the amazing view from the studio, working with models, hand rendering, and of course, meeting Julie. The course greatly boosted Anna’s confidence as a designer and helped her realise how much she wanted to work for herself and start her own company.
At first Anna struggled with presenting in English as it is not her native language, as well as starting to think creatively instead of just practically. She also felt she had to stop looking for only one answer and seeking approval for that answer. As she learned at KLC, there is no single right answer.
How has your career evolved since graduating?
Anna and Julie left KLC with two live projects, which they were very excited to embark upon. The projects, which have since been completed, were the Reception Area and the Rooftop Members Bar at Twickenham Film Studios.
What kind of projects have you been working on recently?
Since leaving KLC, Julie and Anna established their own interior design and architecture firm. Some of the projects they have completed include; a retail installation at Harrods, a total refurbishment and extension of an Edwardian house in West London, and several refurbishments for property investors. They were delighted to see the Members Bar at Twickenham Film Studios open in Summer, 2016 after 2 years of hard work.
A selection of the work completed by Barbarella Studio