With a background in property management and a passion for everything about properties and how people presented their homes, Alicia Newrick left her real estate career in 2016 to study interior design. She thoroughly enjoyed everything about designing interiors and secured her first contract styling holiday units in Main Beach, but this came to an end with the impact of COVID and no holiday makers.
Alicia knew she still wanted to do something in Interior Design and took advice from a friend who was a cabinet maker, giving her the advice that with the ability to design cabinetry and produce technical drawings, combined with her interior design background she would have a successful business. He suggested she further her studies and complete the Certificate IV in Kitchen and Bathroom Design with Designer Training Australia (DTA). In June 2022 she graduated from DTA and set up Six Star Designs.
She secured a joinery contract with a commercial project with Hutchison Builders and she had her start in the cabinetry world, and she absolutely loves it!
In amongst running her own business and her busy family life, Alicia found time to give an insight into some of her design inspirations and has shared a recent project she undertook for the Greenmount Surf Club.
What made you decide to specialise in kitchen and/or bathroom design?
I have a passion for design and creativity, an interest in interior spaces and functionality. I find inspiration from a successful kitchen design. I feel I have a personal connection to the importance of a well designed kitchen in daily life as I love to cook.
How do you stay up to date with current trends?
I love to network and know it’s important to have good relationships with your suppliers. They are up to date with current trends and are always in the know of what’s up and coming.
I also follow loads of amazing architects and designers on social media for inspiration and ideas.
What is the most challenging part of your job?
Multitasking is a challenge, having multiple jobs on the go and having to remember everything about them whilst having a 4-month-old baby and older kids. It’s the constant juggling act.
Do you have a signature style or favourite trend?
My signature style is and always will be biophilic design. An effortless transition between indoor and outdoor spaces, fostering a connection to the surrounding environment by incorporating the use of natural materials, earthy colours, organic textures, wood, stone, plants, maximising natural light. All of these factors will evoke a sense of calm, reduce stress and promote a greater connection to the natural world.
Do you have a favourite project or project you are extra proud of?
My first project was the Tweed Heads Coolangatta Surf Club upgrade. The project included the joinery for the reception area, first aid room and function room amenities. The client selected a unique natural stone for the custom reception desk, so when you enter the reception area you really get the wow factor.
I’m proud of this project as it was my first, I was working with a large building company, so it was sink or swim. I gained so much knowledge working on this job that I will be forever grateful for the opportunity.
What keeps you inspired to be creative for your clients?
Their reactions to designs that are possible within their home. Some people can’t visualise exactly what they want, so when I’m able to produce a design and present to them in 3D renders what their space can look like, they get excited. Those reactions keep me inspired.
What advice do you have for anyone considering studying kitchen and bathroom design?
Build relationships with supplier reps, think of any surface in a kitchen or bathroom that you will recommend in your designs and find suppliers, meet with them, ask for samples, gather booklets on their products, go to showrooms and network with them. They want to get their products out there so they will always be so helpful and full of information for you.
Kitchens and bathrooms are 2 areas of the home that people will upgrade every 10-15 years. You will always have work if you go looking for it. The flexibility of work options once completing the course are endless. I highly recommend studying kitchen and bathroom design.
Alicia has shared some images from her recent project at Greenmount Surf Club. To see more of her work head to www.sixstardesigns.com