Our Exclusive Interview With Sama Kilani of Equilibrium
Founded by Sama Kilani, Equilibrium is an interior design place that specializes in creating functional & aesthetically pleasing interior spaces, & producing furniture.
What drives your design decisions?
Intuition and true passion. My fascination with elements plays a big part too. I read an article not so long ago explaining how design is a tool used for connecting ourselves, and the world around us, to something greater – carving out a creation both timeless and memorable. And I really can’t agree more.
You named your company Equilibrium, how is the “state of balance” reflected in your work?
It was easy choosing my business name because to me “Equilibrium” is definitely what helps me when designing and styling any home. Balance is the key to making interiors look visually stable and stunning. Without a perfect equilibrium, even the most luxurious interiors will end up as a space that feels and looks awkward and uncomfortable to be in and we surely don’t want that.
What design services do you offer?
interior consultant/stylist. I design and produce furniture.
What are your inspirations?
I am always inspired by beautiful design and the way it can transform a space. Not going to lie to you, scrolling through Pinterest and seeing photos of what I like surely gives me a kick but it can get overwhelming sometimes because there’s just too much to look at, so recently I have been avoiding social media. I would like to think I am someone who can find inspiration all around me. Being outdoors with nature, visiting vintage stores downtown, meeting people with different cultures, and watching movies, and art. To think about it? My favorite dose of inspiration definitely comes from traveling. I have been so inspired by the things I have seen on my past trips whether it’s an old European village or a sandy beach town.
5 words that describe your design style.
How do you marry aestheticism and functionality? Do you ever compromise one for the other?
Good question. ‘The war between function vs beauty.’ If you asked me this a few years back I would have definitely said “yes!! I will compromise functionality in a heartbeat.” Aesthetics is everything, but so is functionality. With time I have realized the importance of having a functional home where you can be comfortable in. You definitely can have a beautiful-looking space that is also functional. Again it’s all about finding that balance.
How do you “connect” with your clients before starting the design process?
My clients usually approach me through my Instagram page, so they usually have an idea of what my style looks like. Then In our meetings, I try to understand their characters by digging into their minds to help them have an idea of who they are – what they like and dislike. I start by asking them a couple of random questions then we go into the design process.
How do you create a space that reflects your client’s individuality?
This is very important. Each person is unique, so it’s very important for me to create a home that reflects my clients. In the end, their homes must be their happy places. As I mentioned earlier, through meetings, I start to get to know my clients a little better so that helps me a lot before I start planning the space and working on the mood boards. However, as an interior stylist, I have a solid sense of what I like and don’t like, it’s critical when I do my job I deliver an outcome that satisfies both myself and my client. After the meetings and after collecting all the information I need, I send out detailed mood boards showcasing the items that will best fit their homes, their personalities, and their hearts. It’s so rewarding to see the finished product and know that you helped make someone’s dream a reality.
What are key décor elements that would uplift a room?
Light fixtures, artwork, textures, and most important objects. Colin king once said, “ when you place something on a table, there are times when it feels as though the atmosphere of the room suddenly changes – That’s the power of objects. Objects have the power to change the atmosphere around them.”
Can you balance extravagance with modernity when designing a space?
Yes, sure you can. It’s all about figuring out how to keep the vibe flowing.
What are your thoughts on mixing and matching styles?
I live for mixing and matching. But I think you have to be clever when doing so. You surely can decorate with pieces from more than one period or style as long as you find similarities in colors, wood tones, lines, and scale to pull it all together. Again it all comes to being in equilibrium.
What is your process for designing furniture?
It always starts with something I would want in my home. I would be thinking for instance “oh I need a coffee table, what would look good in this space? “ then I would draw a layout for the table – I am definitely a visual person, I like to see the shape and size on cutout cardboard, which makes the process so much easier.
Which designers do you admire and why?
I admire Axel Vervoordt. His work is very authentic and always promotes an overall sense of peace and tranquility using simplicity. His belief in Wabi, an ancient Japanese philosophy, really inspires me. Made me embrace the unique beauty of imperfections.
What is your favorite design trend?
I am not into trends. I like timeless. But if I have to choose I would say curves. I am seeing a lot of curved chairs, kitchen islands, and curved walls and I love that. I am hoping in 2023, we will see more and more sustainable designs. Consumers are becoming more mindful of choosing environmentally friendly options. Would love to see this trend take center stage.
3 styling tips to re-fresh one living room.
Change your furniture layout, add flowers, Make a few decorative swaps and you’re good to go.