This week we are thrilled to be kicking off our ‘Coffee With..’ series with super stylish design duo, Athina and Amy of Topology Interiors. In case you haven’t seen them all over Instagram, they are award winning interior bloggers & online interior designers with a focus on affordability.
These ladies are currently killing things up in the interior design world with collaborations with industry stalwarts like MADE.COM, Habitat and West Elm. If they aren’t hosting a workshop somewhere, they are knee deep in installations and online design work. With all that going on, we couldn’t be more happy they agreed to take a 5 minute coffee break to answer our burning questions.
Hope you enjoy our chat as much as we did!
Introduce yourselves! What is your background?
Hey! We’re Topology - aka Amy & Athina - two London born interior designers on a mission to show that home design can be affordable & stylish. We met at Leeds university and after graduating, both worked in the interiors / property sector for a few years to gain experience & knowledge in the field before coming together to form Topology, which originally started as a blog but organically grew into an interiors business.
What inspired you to start Topology Interiors together?
In the past, interior designers have been known for being a bit pretentious, very expensive and quite intrusive, so we wanted to break the mould of the traditional interior designer. We wanted to show people that great interior design can be done in an approachable, informal and affordable way. We started Topology by introducing online packages (starting from £125 per room) which allows people to hire a designer for a low cost, without feeling as though someone has to force them into design decisions – our clients have creative control too.
We see you everywhere at the moment! Whether it is at events as interior bloggers, injecting style into new builds or helping individuals with their dream rooms but what would you say is your main focus with Topology right now?
Currently the way things seem to be going is down the on-site design route. Although we’re predominantly online interior design, which we love and is the foundation of Topology, more and more we enjoy the project management side of things i.e. ordering for clients, accepting deliveries, installing furniture & liaising with tradesmen. Although it’s very chaotic at times and unglamorous (you’ll find us in paint stained clothes holding a sausage roll & a coffee to power us through the day) it’s worth all the hard work when you’re putting those final touches in a space and see it all come together.
Athina, you are based in London, Amy you are in Berlin. The vibe of both those cities is very different, do you think influences how you both design spaces?
It probably does in some respect but I think what influences us more is our different styles. Athina flocks to more Scandi, neutral, laid-back designs whereas Amy leans towards vintage, mid-century & more bold options.
Topology Interiors focuses a lot on affordable interiors. Do you have any tips on how to design a small space on a budget?
Where do we start! Top 3:
- Always call up the retailer before making a big purchase and ask for a discount – you will be surprised at what you can be offered! Don’t ask, don’t get.
- Go to the British Heart Foundation on a regular basis, or search on Facebook Marketplace, Gumtree etc as there are some serious bargains out there to be had!
- If you’re shopping online use the google shopping tab. It’s amazing for browsing lots of different, but similar, items in one place and you can view them by price point. So for example, I could type in ‘Green Velvet Sofa’ and see what green velvet sofas would pop up all over google but look at them from low to high cost.
Ok we know that you design on a budget but what is the one thing everyone should splurge on?
Two answers to this...if that’s ok!
- 1 Cushion inserts. Nothing looks worse than a saggy cushion! If you get proper squishy, good quality cushion inserts it can take an bed, sofa, chair, window seat etc from looking average to fantastic in seconds.
- 2 – Switches & Sockets– sounds minor but once you’ve gone from plastic electrical switches / sockets to a nice brass or chrome version, you won’t go back! Dowsing & Reynolds do the best ones.
We LOVE following your Instagram account, you have such a great consistent aesthetic. Any tips for planning a great Instagram feed?
Thanks! We use an app called ‘Preview’. It allows you to plan out your content in advance and drag & drop different images around. It’s really helpful to view everything as a whole so you have a pretty grid.
What’s next for Topology?
Good question…possibly video content! And if we’re lucky a spot of TV work…!
And finally, what is your favourite Urbansize product?
Well we’ve just bought a floating desk for a client which we’re really excited to install as we think the compactness & affordability factor of all Urbansize’s floating units are fantastic, however we really love the Paris Table Lamp.
Thank you so much ladies! What great tips. We are very excited to see what is next for you and would LOVE to see you on our TVs in the future!
Photography: Bekky Lonsdale (first ohoto) and Richard Kiely (all other images)