Inspirational Interiors

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After nearly two decades of transforming houses into homes, Queenstown Interiors and its sister studio Wanaka Interiors are still a driving force in the Southern Lakes design industry.

Queenstown interior designer, Julia Foley, launched Queenstown Interiors in 2001 and opened the Frankton retail store of the same name in 2015. Her colleague, Janine Fitchew,relocated to Wanaka two years later and together they opened Wanaka Interiors in Brownston Street.

Janine says their combined longevity in the industry is all down to a combination of their experience and hands-on service which relies on a personal relationship with every client to achieve the best result.

“Julia and I have worked many projects over the years with different budgets and different styles. We are passionate about working to our clients’ tastes but also pushing the boundaries so people end up with new ideas that they hadn’t thought to try before.”

Both Queenstown Interiors and Wanaka Interiors offer a full interior design service from their respective showrooms, including all internal finishes from flooring to tiles, kitchens, lighting, paint colours and internal detailing. They also specify and supply furniture, homewares, and accessories to make a house ‘move-in ready’.

“We love to work with pieces that are special to our clients, maybe something that has been handed down to them or pieces that were bought while travelling,” says Janine. “Homes should feel collected and put together, not decorated and staged. Even when working with overseas clients we often source antiques and vintage pieces to give the homes character.”

The showrooms stock an eclectic mix of furniture and standout homewares, from New Zealand-made and imported furniture pieces to lamps, rugs, bedding and homeware. Window treatments are also a significant part of their service and Julia and Janine source curtain and upholstery fabrics from all the major fabric houses including Textilia, James Dunlop, Mokum, Warwick, Unique, Casamance, Harlequin and many more.

Although Queenstown Interiors and Wanaka Interiors have a loyal local following, their international customer base is continuing to expand as Julia and Janine compose the interiors of holiday homes for clients living overseas.

Wanaka Interiors designs and furnishes many of the upscale homes signed with holiday home agency, Release Wanaka,

“We love working in the Southern Lakes,” says Janine. “There are so many different styles we are able to create now that there are more people moving here who envision a home that encapsulates their taste and still works with our spectacular scenery. We find that our clients are pretty relaxed, happy and enjoying life here. That makes our relationship and the overall experience very positive.”

Janine’s spring interior tips

  • Two words – lose it! Spring is the best time to get rid of anything you don’t want, use or need. If you can’t bring yourself to throw it away or recycle it, then pack it up and store it.
  • Moving furniture is a simple and cost-effective way to reinvigorate a room – take everything out and come up with a new spring-summer layout to create a different look.
  • If furniture placement can’t be changed, consider updating soft furnishings, window treatments and accessories or add some plants and greenery to achieve a refreshed interior.
  • Don’t forget the walls – buy a new mirror, hang framed black-and-white photos or invest in new artwork.

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