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Alicja Wawrzyniak is an UK based Designer. She founded her own design company Alwa Design Studio Ltd in 2016 serving the restaurant industry at first, and now designs mainly for private residences undertaking variety of projects including custom design and project management. Alicja has designed her own unique floor lamp that was inspired by empathic design strategy, that Alicja also curated. The floor lamp that represents female energy, inner strength and confidence was manufactured by a local sculptor. High vibrations and positive emotions more than trends are the main touch point for Alicja’s creative designs. For custom design work Alicja uses local trades like carpentry, decorating and installation, to support small businesses as well as family generated workshops operating for the last 60 years. Bespoke and custom designed projects accordingly to client’s wish lists are big part of Alicia’s design firm’s culture and philosophy. Alicja also offers flexible mixture of services that fit into any stage of the project, to support clients in the completion of their dream homes. Alicja is using environmental friendly and sustainable solutions for her designs by choosing specific wall coverings, furniture, and paint products, minimising usage of carbon monoxide and plastic whenever it is possible or required. Smart homes technology including lighting and infrared panels are the most recent products that Alicja is using in her projects.
Alicja was published on the Houzz platform in 2022. Here you can read an article written by Stephan Rabimov.

interior designer

“The UK designer shares how combining
humour and a human touch inspires authentic
living spaces and satisfied clients.


“Alicja Wawrzyniak is not your typical interior designer. Like many, her creative side emerged at a young age. “I started designing when I was 13 years old. It started in my room where I didn’t like the wallpaper my parents put on the walls. I changed the layout of the room literally every few months,” she says. But unlike most designers, she has a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology. It is this brilliant intersection of psychology and design that gives Wawrzyniak her edge: The ability to create personalised spaces that reflect the individual character of her clients. “Everyone is different and the space we live in should express this,” she believes.

Here she discusses how she manages client expectations, draws out their stories and uses digital tools to work more efficiently and provide clarity throughout the entire design process”.

Cinema room design project

Telling Client Stories Through Design

“I got an ‘aha’ moment where I decided, ‘wow, I’m going to combine emotions and interior design together,’” she says. “I just made up the empathic design strategy for myself,” she explains. “It’s about expressing your emotional being in your interior. The best way to do that is to ask clients their story.” The dozens of renovation projects she has completed in the UK since she opened her Alwa Interior Design Studio in 2016 are “designed with stories, not furniture,” she says”.

Keep a Sense of Humour

After working in psychology for several years, in 2013 Wawrzyniak began pursuing her passion for design, and studied at the British Academy of Interior Design in London. Now she uses her skills as a psychologist to inspire design and to help her navigate the human relationship part of running a business. 

Her best advice for managing the expectations of clients is to use humour and provide them with clarity about the design process. ”You have to be very clear and transparent with the client about what the stages are,” she says. “I’m also very logical, so I need to have steps and I have to finish one, two, three, four, five, six,” she says. When a client wants to jump ahead, she reminds them in an assertive, but kind way, that “we cannot move further if I do not finish, I need time to finish this.”

Wawrzyniak uses Houzz Pro to help her manage client expectations. She brings them into virtual renderings of the rooms through Mood Boards, where they can see how the products, materials and colours work together. “My clients absolutely love it when I give them access to their rooms,” she says. “They can go through the products and leave you the notes. This is a very efficient tool in terms of communication with clients.” They can also accept or reject products item by item. “There are no misunderstandings because once they accept the product, that’s accepted.”


Communicate, Communicate, Communicate

Effective communication is one of the most crucial paths to success, says Wawrzyniak.  “I have a system of updating clients. They don’t mind waiting as long as I update them about the timing.” She also stresses the importance of being transparent. “I’m open with my clients about difficulties. I don’t stress them but I am open if there is a problem,” she says. 

(…) “The communication is great because when I get leads, I have it on my phone. I’m going to set up templates with messages because I just don’t have time to answer all the messages.”

Finding Her Happy Place

Wawrzyniak took a risk leaving behind a psychology career to found Alwa Interior Design Studio, but she has never looked back. As a three-times Best of Houzz winner, she’s proven how incorporating your past with the present can bring success and happiness.

“I realised that I had to do something with my life because the job in psychology wasn’t giving me satisfaction. I had this urge inside me to express myself in a creative way,” she says. And the pay off comes when her clients see the final product.  “When I finish the design and they say, ‘Thank you so much. I love it’  you have no idea how much happiness I have in my heart”.

I design with stories not with furniture ®

Alicja Wawrzyniak

Article written by STEPHAN RABIMOV

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