Creating Personalized Spaces with Ana Cummings
Helping people make the most of their homes, use design to create solutions for their needs, and create spaces that allow you to room to grow are the things that drive and inspire us at EQ3. We are proud of the opportunities we get to work with talented interior designers, and love being able to showcase their work! We chatted with Ana Cummings of ANA Interiors, Ltd. about her design practise, her passion for helping people create rooms that bring them joy, and her advice for those looking to unlock their home’s potential this summer.
Tell us about how you got into interior design:
I have always known that I was meant to create spaces as I have been doing that for friends and family since I was a teenager. It was only after I had pursued different degrees in university, lived abroad, and started a family that I finally embarked on my own personal journey of fulfillment by finally jumping into the design world with both feet in 2006. I have not looked back ever since.
What makes your approach to design unique?
What makes my approach to interior design unique is that I look at spaces holistically. I try to envision how each of our senses would experience the space. I imagine how every element inside the space would interact with one another. My goal is to illicit such a joyful spark within the client that they never want to leave their space. I often hear that a lot from my clients, so it has become a part of my design mantra. A home is a very emotional entity and I cherish that. Every day I’m honoured that people allow me to get to know them well enough to create their own personal sanctuary. Good design doesn’t come out of the blue, it comes from getting to know your client: their wants, wishes, needs, desires, and dreams and putting that all together to satisfy their mandate for their space.
Can you walk us through your process in designing a room?
My process for designing a room is very much the same whether it is for a 500–square–foot condo or a 5,000–square–foot home. We start from blueprints or go into a space to photograph and measure. From there we have a design concept phase and floor plan layout, which is approved by the client before we start digging deep into sourcing, making selections, and creating detailed plans and elevations. Once the finishes and furnishings are specified, we continue with the purchasing and implementing the design right into the installation phase. We finish up with final styling, artwork, and photography.
How do you balance your clients’ needs with your own design philosophy?
How I balance client needs with my own design philosophy is something I’ve honed throughout the years. We are each unique individuals and I want to make sure that my clients’ spaces reflect them as such. I will ask people to show me their favourite things — whether that be a rug, piece of art, clothing, family heirloom, place in the world, or design-related image — and use that as our starting point. Based on their needs, I will guide them with my best choices because that is what they are ultimately hiring me for. Often times, I will bring a design decision to the table that they had not even considered before, and when presenting those options, the clients are empowered with making the final decision to go with A or B, but either way, they know their space is going to shine.
Can you tell us about a particularly challenging design problem that you managed to solve for your client?
EQ3 is great because it’s a Canadian company and I like to support local first and foremost. For this client we knew we would be sourcing from EQ3. Having said that, we found the design to be very straightforward, we could collect all of the finish samples and colours, the dimensions were easily placed into our design program, and it’s all customizable, right down to using multiple fabrics, which we love. We used EQ3 pieces in every room in the home and it flows so harmoniously, not to mention it’s all very comfortable and easy to live with.
What advice do you have for someone looking to update their home or uncover their home’s potential this summer?
I always say, start with a good cleaning and editing. Only then can you see what your space’s potential truly can become. We get distracted by clutter, piles, and layers. If we strip away to the basics of the room, you can then make it anything you want it to be, in summer, or any season. However, I find that in summer I really want my rooms to feel airier, lighter, and brighter. During summer, less is definitely more.
What new projects do you have coming up that you’re most excited about?
I’m really excited about all of the show homes we are working on. That arena really pushes our creativity to the max because I want to showcase what’s new in the design world. I want to show how we can inspire and take things to the next level, whether that be through a floral display, colour palette, how a bed is made, how a surface is covered, or how a window is dressed. That is where we can really highlight the latest and greatest.