Entrepreneur

  • Coffee with a Creative: Bhavini Lakhani of B81 Designs

    Today on Coffee with a Creative we meet Bhavini Lakhani, of B81 Designs, she talks to us about her work, daily routines, inspiration and of course her hot drink of choice.

    What is your coffee (tea, infusions, hot chocolate) of choice?

    A nice flat white.

    What inspired you to set up your Company?

    I was made redundant as my maternity leave ended in 2011 – rather than be upset about it, I decided to be positive about it and started freelancing. It was a very accidental step into the world of freelancing, but I wouldn’t change any of it! 

    Can you describe a typical workday (from wake up to lights out)?

    I’m usually up by 5am so that I can fit in a workout – I find this helps me to clear my mind and usually releases any stress from the day before. It gives me some me time, and also gets me feeling really energised. I also listen to podcasts while I’m working out and I find that it’s a great way to fit that in! I then get myself ready for the day before waking my 2 girls up at 7. I do the school run at 8.25am and once I’m back home I make myself a flat white and sit down to work until it’s time to go and pick the girls up from school at 3pm. Once we’re home, the afternoon is family time. I make dinner and play with the girls, read etc. They have dinner at about 5, and at 6.45/7ish it’s time for them to have a bath and go to bed. If I have a lot of on, I sometimes work in the evenings once the girls are asleep.

    Describe your signature style

    In all honesty, I don’t think I have a set signature style. I’m quite good at adapting to different project briefs and client needs.

    Describe the best project you could get if budget was a non-contender

    I’ve had a few amazing projects throughout my career so far – I’ve done a cinema ad which was just fantastic. I’ve also created a gorgeous brochure for British Gas to use at an employee recognition event, and I’ve recently worked with an international coffee machine manufacturer to create a brochure for one of their new lines. The one thing I’ve always wanted to do is a billboard!!!!

    What’s next for the Company?

    I want to be able to work with some medium/large companies, rather than just start ups and small businesses.

    What is the best thing about the creative scene in your city?

    The creative scene in MK is amazing. There’s a really nice supportive feel within the creative community, rather than it being highly competitive. 

    Who is the creative to watch?

    Roxanne at RoxPix Photography. She’s so good at what she does, and she’s always pushing herself to achieve her goals and dreams!

    How and why did you become a *said* designer/creative?

    I loved art GCSE and A Level and the next step was an Art Foundation course so that I could try different things and see what direction I wanted to go in. During that year, I found that graphic design was something I naturally gravitated towards. The typical Asian careers of law, medicine etc didn’t hold any attractions for me at all and from an early age I know I wanted to do something more creative.

    What are your top 3 *creative* tips?

    – Push yourself outside of your comfort zone – even if it’s only a little…that’s where the magic happens.
    – Look for inspiration outside of the box – just because I’m a graphic designer, doesn’t mean only graphic design inspires me.
    – Sometimes, the ideas that you think are bad…are actually great!

    What *creative* design trends do you wish would go away?

    Bevel and Emboss effects on text for logos…

    Describe your life in 5 words

    Busy, happy, blessed, organised chaos!

    What are you thankful for?

    My wonderful family and friends.

    What is your perfect weekend in the City?

    Afternoon tea and cocktails with my husband or my best girlies, followed by a relaxing spa day!

    What is your prefect weekend in the Countryside?

    Taking the kids to somewhere like Hampshire and enjoying the wonderful forests and nature we have around us!

    Where in the World is your most favourite place to visit and why?

    New York – I LOVE how much there is going on, it’s so inspiring and the coffee is just heavenly! The people are really friendly, and I love discovering new parts of the city. Havana comes a really close second though…I love the relaxed Cuban culture, the historic places and the artwork.

    Afternoon tea and cocktails sounds right up our street… where are we going? If you want conviction that this lady knows her stuff then look at our very own branding for Honestly Wonderful – Yes, created by the lovely lady herself – thanks Bhavini, we love it too!! Follow Bhavini on socials to keep up with her fantastic work, love of coffee and inspiration. You can follow B81 Designs on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

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  • Coffee with a Creative: Harri Dhokia of Black Qubd

    Coffee with a Creative is all about meeting like-minded creatives in various industries talking about them, their businesses and their favourite hot drink of choice! Today we meet Harri Dhokia of Black Interiors and Black Qubd.

    What is your coffee (tea, infusions, hot chocolate) of choice?

    Latte 

    What inspired you to set up your Company?

    I found the courage to believe in myself, understand my worth and challenge myself. I was surrounded by young entrepreneurs who inspired me but it also helped knowing that I had the support.

    Can you describe a typical workday (from wake up to lights out)?

    The beauty about my career and business is that each day is different. A typical office day starts with me waking up, doing a workout in the morning, shower, get ready, have breakfast, then head to the office. My daily tasks could be from being creative with design on a few projects, to brainstorming ideas with my colleagues or simply having a laugh.

    Although the business is busy, I believe its important to have a light-hearted environment full of positive energy. I’m generally in the office until about 6pm and head out to either meet friends, chill at home with parents or go to yoga / zumba etc depending on which it is.

    Throughout the day I am always in touch with my friends and colleagues which is important to me. I try hard to having a life – working balance but eventually realised that my work is my passion and therefore that is my life.

    Describe your signature style

    With my business name being Black Interiors, its easy to have a black theme running through my project and interiors but generally I have a neutral canvas with the addition of splashes of colour.

    Describe the best project you could get if budget was a non-contender

    I actually envy myself with the projects I do have with a client who is amazing. the projects vary from new build mansions to central London apartments. One type of project I would love to experience a hotel project or a restaurant.

    What’s next for the Company?

    Wow…so much! I have some powerful goals in place for the business and its growing day by day. You’ll have to watch this space 😉

    What is the best thing about the creative scene in your city?

    London is the heart of creativity. The multi cultural city showcases talent in every corner of the city. But for me, nature is the best thing about the city and that is the beautiful colours found in a London sunset. Its mesmerising.

    How and why did you become a *said* designer/creative?

    I’ve always been an artist and fell into a job working with wallpaper and colour schemes after A-Levels. This led me into a job designing kitchens and bathrooms and I worked my way through job after job in the similar field learning and growing at each step.

    What are your top 3 *creative* tips?

    – I have learnt to always believe in yourself. If you’re talented and are always getting praised for this talent, then believe and value yourself and push yourself harder.
    – Use your creative talent and apply it to life. We are naturally gifted so show it off. and finally …..
    – dream big!

    What *creative* design trends do you wish would go away?

    That’s a tricky one especially as trends have a cycle and generally filter back through into our lives. The beauty about having a creative talent, we have a natural way of converting something quite ugly into something beautiful no matter what the trend.

    Describe your life in 5 words

    Awesome, happy, passionate, fun and positive

    What are you thankful for?

    My parents…I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them and their support

    What is your perfect weekend in the City?

    People watching, chilling in the sun with friends

    What is your prefect weekend in the Countryside?

    Taking in the surroundings and going for long strolls

    Where in the World is your most favourite place to visit and why?

    I love Dubai. For the all rounder experience of weather, shopping, beach and food. However, for me, every place I visit are created with amazing memories and laughter.

    Harri and Black Qubd are regulars on the social media scene on InstagramFacebook and Pinterest. They also have some fantastic products on their website, so take a look.

    AartiPopat Blog Signature bluewgold x

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