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Katia Nakhle took over our instagram account !

Hello Kitmo lovers! Interior architect, Katia Nakhle interacted with the 3 generations of kitmo and took over the kitmo instagram account for a week; posting 3 times per day while covering kitmos past, present & future.
Here are some pictures of kitmo from the day it was established (1961) until today.
You can check out more on instagram with the hasthag #kitmopastpresentfuture or on kitmo’s instagram account

About Katia:
Katia Nakhle AKA k_k_n_ is an interior architect that graduated from Alba university (Beirut) with 14 years + of experience. Lecturer since 2005 and interior architecture professor since 2009. Check out her work on Katianakhle.designstudio & stay on the lookout for her compelling charisma that will surely inspire devotion…

AN INTERVIEW WITH AN INTERIOR ARCHITECT (VANESSA’S WORLD)

Hello friends! we have met with talented interior architect Vanessa Arabian for an exclusive interview!
Vanessa tells us about her journey of discovery & inspiration and shares some entertaining secrets.

Incorporating style and class is what makes her an up and coming architect in Lebanon’s design scene.

Vanessa is a dynamic interior architect. With just a few years of experience, she has already designed, managed, and delivered a wide variety of projects. From residential, to commercial, and large-scale mixed-use development.
Since graduating from the Lebanese American University in 2013, she has worked in several design studios where she was involved as a team member/leader in some phases of the design process -from conception all the way through completion- with a proven record of accomplishment in people, project, and client management.

1- In the last couple of years, we have seen a radical increase in the number of accredited interior architects in Lebanon. Why do you think this has been such a trendy and popular degree?
More and more people are appreciating finer and rather aesthetically appealing products. There is a need for talented people to conjure those wants into concrete reality.

2- In your scope of work , you are exposed to many different fields (furniture design, architecture..), do you explore all of them? And what is it that interests you the most in the design field?
I am trained to think in both spectrums, on a general scale as well as in exceptional detail simultaneously. Creativity and rationality are opposites but my position is to conjoin them. I try to think of it as one common project and not separate entities.

3- What is your main reference or who do you lookup to when you are searching for inspiration (design book, website…)?
Nowadays research is based on photos, which is unfortunate because people tend to judge the visual rather than the intellectual aspect of the work. A greater amount of effort is put on presentation and that is a less significant aspect of the idea of architecture.
I try to read and gather data in order to deliver a refined end-product to my client, and this is done by understanding the client’s world.

4- How do you approach a new project ?
Every project starts with a series of questions related to the space. This questionning phase is very important and should not be missed. It is only through this thinking process that spatial answers come.
At the end of the day, you will be designing a space the client desires to live in. Therefore, getting to know your client is also very essential.

5- What do you think are the latest trends in interior design and what materials do you integrate in your interiors?
Integration of greenery within the space, earth materials, and metallics.

6- Can you list 3 of your favorite kitmo wood floors in 2017
Torone herringbone, salvaged oak grey, and drift wood.

7- Nowadays we are witnessing an increase in apartments with smaller areas; something Lebanese are not really used to. How do you design small spaces? and what advice can you give to someone looking to buy a smaller home.
First of all is to accept the fact that the house is small.
In designing a home, I aim to make all rooms blend in and share one common form, making it appear as one big apartment. Natural shades of color help in visual blending too.
I highly recommend choosing a space with maximum natural light in order not to feel trapped in a container.

8- With the rise of social media we have seen lots of clients dreaming of pinterest like interiors. Is this something you feed off from or is it something that ruins the whole approach?
It is a love/hate relationship. Pinterest is beneficiary to a certain extent during the initial phases of design; when we are trying to grasp what the client wants. However, social media can be frustrating to the client especially when reality of the finished space clashes with what was envisaged from the online photos.

9- Tell us more about kitchens? Which kitmo kitchen model is your favorite one?
My favorite kitchen at kitmo’s is the URBAN.
Integration of technology is very powerful at this stage and the smarter the space the more impressive the kitchen is turning out to be.

10- What are your objects of desire that you would love to have in a kitchen?
Wooden Spatula, colorful kitchen aid, and wood chopping board built in my counter.

11- If you have to give advice to interior architects that are just starting what would it be?
Experiment with materials and light

12- Where can we find you when you are not at work?
Working or working out!

A GLIMPSE INTO THE WORLD OF BARREL MAKING

We met with Andrea Geara to understand a bit more about the art of barrel making.

Author’s Biography: Andrea G is the second generation of Aurora, a boutique family run winery in Batroun (North of Lebanon)

Two summers ago was the first time I had ever walked into a barrel factory. It had such a mesmerizing feel to it, almost as if I traveled back in time. 20 to 30 craftsmen hammering, toasting, molding and combining batches of oak planks that had been sitting outside for many summers and winters absorbing all the rainfalls and burning heat from those precious sunny burgundy days.

Everyone was in the moment; the factory preserved the tradition of manual labor, which was an aspect that gave this object so much to offer. It was a story, an artisan’s work, and served the most important phase of winemaking.

Besides the scientific significance of micro oxygenation that wood naturally provides, oak barrels majestically embrace the wine, adding some undertones of smokiness and nuttiness.  Somehow the oak barrel seals this bouquet of natural characteristics that the wine already expresses. The fruit, tannins, and acidity are finally relaxed in the presence of wood.

After the first step of winemaking, initial fermentation, the wine is moved to the cellar to sit in oak barrels for about a year. Some winemakers choose not to use wood at all, but in most cases, the wood embellishes the wine providing more length and roundness. Almost as if you are softening the edges of a rough surface; even though it might look great, the physical experience of it just gets better; in this case, the texture of the wine becomes softer and more enjoyable.

Oak barrels come in many forms. The cooking treatments vary and the country of origin also plays a significant role in the style of oaking. The most popular one comes from France of course; adding subtler flavors to the wine typically some notes of spice, coconut and a silky texture. This style is typically used with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, which are considered delicate grapes. On the other hand, American oak is commonly used with more robust grapes like Cabernet Sauvignon, adding traces of vanilla, caramel, and a fairly creamy texture to the wine.

More about the winery: www.aurorawinery.co