The journey so far
How did the desire to create a beautiful first home, without breaking the bank, turn into the UK's first and favourite online interiors company? We hear you ask (loud and clear, and in that exact wording!). When Diana & Laura started working together at L'Oréal back in 2004, little did they know would be running a successful tech company 14 years later.
Laura was a product design engineer and Diana comes from brand and marketing. They quickly became firm friends and shared a passion for design (and gin & tonic!). One thing led to another and... My Bespoke Room was born!
The idea for My Bespoke Room came from their own frustrations after buying and renovating their first homes. Interior design as a whole was inaccessible and costly, and although Pinterest was inspiring, it was a nightmare trying to find the products displayed so beautifully in the photos!
They started doing projects for friends and family to work out how they could build their idea using technology, and after raising a small amount of money, the first website launched in 2014.
Both with young children, flexible working was so important and is still rooted in the business today by creating flexible working opportunities for designers.
Before building out our My Bespoke Room team, Laura & Diana had already reached the Top 10 Interior Designers on Houzz UK, gathered some amazing reviews and won awards. As MBR started to grow, the next step was hiring professional and qualified designers to take on the design part of the workload and step the business up a gear.
By 2017, Laura & Diana had investors behind them who truly believed in them and the company, and they relaunched the website and hired Lucy, the Head of Interior Design at My Bespoke Room. Within a year the MBR HQ team had outgrown their first office and moved to a larger premises. We were growing quicker than flowers in spring!
We currently have 30 designers who work in the office and across the UK, we rank No.1 Interior Designer on Houzz UK, for 5 years in a row we've won the Best of Houzz award for Design & Service, and are the most reviewed professional on the platform. We recently closed our latest fundraise to develop our platform to help interior designers grow their own businesses, be able to work smarter and earn more.
*Please note that the Complete Design Experience is now £195.
What we do and how we do it
It was important to make the customer experience easy, affordable, accessible and efficient, and in turn, help the designers be more productive with their time. Despite taking the archaic industry of interiors online, we wanted to make sure that the process remained personal and friendly, so we made sure we hired our talented designers, not only for their professionalism, but for their loveliness too.
Our design process is intuitive and collaborative; the online work desk is a place where the designer and customer can work together, sharing inspiration and ideas, to create the perfect space for the client that is both beautiful and functional.
Once you have submitted your online brief, it only takes 4 simple steps to receive your bespoke room design:
1. Brief encounter
Our easy 10 minute online brief is cunningly designed to tell us what we need to know about you and your space.
With the brief under your belt, you then upload photos of your room, a floor plan and any inspiration ideas that you have seen and loved.
Once done, it lets us accurately match you with a designer who's perfect for your look, budget and lifestyle.
2. Share ideas & collaborate
We kick things off with a 30 minute call from your personal designer who digs a little deeper into what you want to achieve, nailing those details.
For instance, you know that oh-so comfy chair you can’t part with? Tell us about it and we’ll make it work for you.
Our online chat is perfect to share ideas and communicate with your designer.
3. Visualise your room
Before we start sourcing any products we agree the design direction and room layout with you first.
Your final room design comes complete with your very own personalised interactive shopping list. Think Pinterest but better!
It’s a place where you can see how all your items look together and play around with different options and alternatives.
And there's more, we also throw in styling tips and recommendations to help you create the final look.
Any questions? You've got two weeks' post design time to contact your designer.
4. Shop, save smile
With our totally free uber-convenient shopping service, you can shop your room design from multiple retailers, all in just one click!
Our trusty team place the orders with each retailer, saving you the hassle. They keep you in the loop throughout, and you can also check in on your own dedicated account page.
We match retailer pricing and in some cases can build in exclusive discounts so you can be sure of more bang for your buck!
And just in case you’re wondering, we’re also on hand to help with any problems or returns.
What our customers say
We are very grateful to all our wonderful customers who have been part of our journey and are happy to share their stories. It means so much to the whole team when we have customers who get in touch after the process, as even though it's online, there's so much human touch that goes into each design.
The MBR family
We have a hardworking and dedicated team pushing My Bespoke Room forward from our head office in sunny Bournemouth! Growing the business that started from Laura & Diana's kitchen tables is super exciting and rewarding, our very first designers are still with us today and have developed and grown with the company.
In 2017 Lucy, our Head of Interior Design, joined the MBR team. It was a big role to fill and she has been instrumental in establishing design standards, training and growing the design team. Laura & Diana firmly believe you need to hire excellent people who are, and can be, better than you. That's what makes a truly successful team.
Within a year we had outgrown our first office and moved to a larger premises to fit in our new arrivals to HQ!
A community of designers
We’ve sifted, sieved and sorted through the country's best interior design talent to assemble our award-winning design team.
Our designers are not only picked for their qualifications, skill and experience, but for their loveliness. It’s important that you get a friendly voice and listening ear. What drives them all is a burning passion to transform houses into beautiful homes, with you in mind.
We recently had our first designer conference which was full of energy and buzz. Our strong designer community is so powerful and many are now friends for life.
designer in the spotlight
Claire is a resident designer in the head office and works closely with Lucy, our Head of Design, to ensure our design standards remain sky high. We pride ourselves on being a friendly and personal company, so we want you to know the people behind the impressive tech. On the blog this week, we are throwing Claire into the spotlight, and have asked her some burning questions...
Why interior design?
I have always been super creative; coming from a family with a design background, I've been encouraged to follow this passion. I took a particular interest in interiors because I loved the idea of using my creative skills for something practical. While studying the Interior Architecture & Design degree at Bournemouth Arts University, I got pretty obsessed with space planning. Finding the best, most efficient layouts to create a fab space still gives me a kick!
How do you spend your time away from MBR HQ?
Other than having a constant eye on interior magazines and Instagram accounts, I love cooking and baking. There always seems to be a birthday cake to make and I am a prolific feeder! I also love having a little arty project on the go, this can range from embroidery and paintings to a present for friends' children.
What's your favourite thing about working for MBR?
My job obviously allows me to be creative a lot of the time, but part of the job that I really enjoy is just being able to talk to lots of people - both customers and other designers! It's also amazing as a designer to be able to design for so many different people with different styles and needs, this really keeps me on my toes and I do love a challenge.
What does the My Bespoke Room mean to you?
Oh my gosh, I can't even describe how amazing our MBR family is! To be able to work alongside a bunch of designers that bring so much positivity and support to the table is a joy. If anyone has a question or wants to share something, everyone else is immediately on it with help and kind words. It's great because it just shows that you get out what you put in. My Bespoke Room supplies a platform to provide designers with flexible and supported work, whilst still offering an affordable design service - literally, all positive vibes here.
Every week we do a 'Meet The Team Tuesday' on social, so head over to Instagram and give us a follow to meet a member of our amazing MBR Family one by one!