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Luxury Interiors Magazine spoke with the Founder and Director of OS Designs: Oz Lancaster

What determined your passion for interior design?

My creativity from early age; I always wanted to be a designer but didn’t know which kind till I saw my first Architectural Digest at the age of 7

Have you always been a creative person?

Yes, I used to draw on bread, my dad’s car, and the walls in our house! I started taking private art lessons from a very early age; I still have all my sketches, organised into months and years, from when I was 3.

What inspired you to set up your own Interior Design Company has this always been your dream?

I was 28 and I had been working in a furniture company as a director. They asked me to set up their interior design department. I worked day and night to establish their interior design section. As I set up every single stage of the company, the scary thought of having my own company didn’t seem so scary anymore. I bit the bullet and went for it, and ! never looked back

Do you have a signature style?

Yes I do – however it’s important to respect the architecture and our clients wishes when it comes to the various projects. It’s important to have the right brief, and it’s important to execute the brief accurately and with flair.

What have been your favourite interior design projects that you have worked on?

I have truly enjoyed every project that we worked on to date. But two projects really stand out for me – our Manchester Villa, and the Grade-II listed heritage town house renovation in North Hyde Park. Each has taken five years to complete, and we have been involved in every step of the journey with our clients, from submitting planning applications, to bespoke furniture design, and full procurement.

Talk us through your design process, how are your ideas brought to life?

I start with the basics. Seeing the room without any furniture and understanding the layout on the plan, I immediately start sketching. Functionality comes first, then layer by layer we make the design process an easy journey for our clients. I always try to picture myself living in the property, and in some cases I have actually stayed in the properties to better understand how my clients will live there. My sketches come alive with my design team helping me to execute the ideas with 3D renderings and material boards. We show to our clients exactly what they will get at every step of the process. Most importantly as we progress along this journey, we take care of all the necessary coordination and tiniest details.

Who or what inspires you?

Music, travelling, new experiences, art, reading tons of books… I always take photos of the things that I find interesting whether relevant to interiors or not; and most importantly, my family who inspire me all the time.

What would be your advice for other women who want to set up their own business?

Be confident in who you are, be aware of what your weaknesses are – but mostly, focus on what your strengths are! Embrace your innate qualities and passion; and get help on improving any areas of perceived weakness. Don’t be shy to ask for help, and make sure you know every aspect of the company, and the wider industry.

Are luxury interiors, in your opinion becoming more popular; is there more demand for this design aesthetic?

Interior design is becoming a need instead of merely a trend or popularity. More and more, our lives are becoming hectic, and our houses need to serve our needs and also still should be the soft landing cave we are all craving. Interior Architecture and Interior Design play a huge role to make our homes practical and functional. From material selection to mechanical engineering, a home should serve both aesthetically and practically.

What are your future ambitions? Are there any projects you have upcoming that you are excited about?

I find each and every project very stimulating – each project has its own character and challenges. I find every moment in every stage of the project very exciting, and a massive learning curve which I relish.

What advice do you have for young designers who aspire to set up their own interior design company?

Go for it ! and believe in it 100%, give your best, be passionate, be dedicated to your own path. Be aware of the trends and your colleagues, but never compare yourself with others or competitors; everybody’s path is different so believe in your own unique path so much that you create your own trends, your own world, and complete each project with your whole heart.


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