20 questions with designer Sian Elin

We were lucky enough to meet Sian Elin at Tent London this year and even though it was her first ever trade show, you never would have guessed – she looked every inch the pro. Her bold geometric prints and acid pastel colour combinations are a contemporary take on the current trend for all things mid-century. Definitely one to watch. Here’s what she had to say on the somewhat important things in life…

1. Top interior design tip?

Make sure you have lots of light! If it’s not natural, then create it with lamps. And start with a natural or neutral base, and add lots of colour through accessories.

2. Interiors – dark and moody or light and airy?

Light and airy all the way. It’s my top requirement for any living space.

3. Cats or dogs?

Cats, definitely. We had a cat growing up with us, who lived to be 20.

4. What are you afraid of?

Flying. I really hate it, and for someone who is so scared of it, I do it A LOT.

5. The Beatles or The Stones?

The Beatles – I grew up listening to my parents old LPs. They had a record player at a time when it wasn’t yet considered to be cool or retro.

6. Asterix or Tintin?

Tintin, just for his hair! And I read a few growing up.

7. Helvetica or Arial?

Helvetica – I trained as a graphic designer.

8. Star sign?


9. Six fantasy dinner party guests? 

Paul Cezanne because I love his paintings, and growing up he was my first major inspiration in art or design.

Sylvia Plath because she had a funny and warped view on life.

Ruth Jones from Gavin & Stacey to make me laugh.

Julie Andrews so she could sing something from the Sound Of Music.

Celia Birtwell to tell me about her amazing career as a surface pattern designer.

10. What was the last thing you bought? 

A Great Gatsby t-shirt from the Strand book store in Union Square, New York.

11. Introvert or extrovert? 

Sometimes extrovert, sometimes introvert.

12. Sweet or savoury?

Sweet – I love cake far too much.

13. When was the last time you cried? 

Oh all the time, I’m very emotional.

14. Tea or coffee?

Tea. Earl Grey first thing in the morning.

15.Dress up or dress down? 

Dress comfy. I rarely wear heels. I feel like you have to feel comfy to feel confident.

16. Library or nightclub?

Hmmm. More and more library these days – loud music gets on my nerves.

17. Which song do you play when you need cheering up?

So cheesy – but Crazy by Michael Buble.

18. Favourite book? 

Bell Jar. Life of Pi. The Wasp Factory. Catcher in the Rye. Sorry too many to name just one.

19. When you were five, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Hmmm, I think an Interior Designer...or was it an astronomer...

20. And favourite colour?

Right now it is yellow.

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Katie Treggiden, Guest Editor

View all posts by Katie Treggiden, Guest Editor