Interior designer Chat Fores always aspired to be part of a huge firm and learn how to work with groups of people handling large projects.
Six years after starting out, she is now making a name for herself in the industry.
Fores is the principal designer of Chat Fores and Design Studio and member of the College of Architecture and Design advisory board at Enderun Colleges.
She recently won big at the prestigious 2021 International Property Awards under the Asia Pacific Region. The recognitions include Best Residential Interior Show Home Philippines for The Galleon Residences Showroom, Best Residential Interior Apartment Philippines for JOYA Residential Unit, and Best Leisure Interior Philippines for Azure Paris Beach Club.
“I was asked to submit a project that our team designed. At that time, I felt that we were ready and submitted three options,” she said. “They chose all three which we prepared submittals for. To my surprise, we won awards for all three.”
Making her mark
Fores began her career just after a month-long vacation in Europe with friends to celebrate their college graduation. “When I got back, I applied to an architectural firm and an interior design firm. I got accepted in both but since I wanted architectural experience, I started working for Leandro V. Locsin Partners,” she said.
A few years after joining the company, Fores began receiving offers to design model units for a developer. As a result of her efforts, the company she worked for was quite pleased with the outcome. There were 17 projects within a range of two to three years. It was her mark to start a career under her name.
“Design has to work for both client and designer, it has to be practical, beautiful and functional,” she explained. “I try to add a little accent or drama in any interior either in mixed prints or texture, a dash of some bold color, a statement piece, a nice piece of artwork or a funky piece of furniture. I try to add some of my touches and pretend that the interiors I am doing are for my own home as well.”
Fores’ first big tower project, the Gramercy Residences in Century City Makati, would be her most memorable. It was Fores who conceived of the condominium’s lobby and its four stories of amenities. “We were given a lot of spaces to work on with a great concept,” she said.
Fores advises that in keeping with the evolution of structure, interior design must adapt as well, especially at present where almost everybody is spending almost all their time at home. “With these considerations in mind, it is necessary to evolve, alter, and make our spaces more functional without jeopardizing our home’s purpose,” she noted
Establish your own style
Time is also a key factor when earning a degree in interior design. She recommends students to devote more time to research, reading more books, magazines, and researching other design ideas because these will aid them in comprehending finishing, styling, decor, and the various materials required.
“Use this time to practice drawing, sketching, and establishing your own personal style,” she advised.