The speediest, easiest and most affordable way to design your home. KUKY sets out to offer online interior design services within easy reach of those who want to transform their home into something truly special. Find out more about who we are and why we love what we do.
“UAE designer Valentina Piscopo always knew she wanted to deal with a virtual platform, even pre-pandemic.
While the company does offer traditional face-to-face interior design services, 90 per cent of its business is run as an e-design platform, in the UAE as well as for projects in the UK, Italy, Saudi Arabia and Ethiopia.
A huge advocate for going digital from the get-go, Piscopo, however, found people were not 100 per cent sure if the concept was “for them”, she says.
“It was a no-brainer for me to start an online business because I did not want to be restricted geographically; both where I could physically work and which city I could design homes in were important to me. But, admittedly, despite e-designs being offered in the region by other prominent designers, the concept was still new in 2019 and I had to invest time in educating customers before seeing the rewards.”
Then the pandemic struck, and Kuky Design was “flooded” with work. Suddenly everyone was spending a lot more time in their homes and noticing everything they wanted to change, but wanting to keep safe.
An online platform helmed by a local designer to help them realise their space’s full potential was an easy fit for many people in the UAE.
Piscopo found one of the great advantages of an online interior design project is that people’s own DIY abilities come to the fore. “Clients who opt for this service all have a knack for DIY or want to put things together themselves and be house-proud of what they’ve accomplished. E-design offers them the flexibility to style the way they want and to be creative.
“I am a lot stricter with my non-e-design clients when it comes to how much input they have, I feel more responsibility to deliver the look that I promised, that I was hired to do, but that rigidity is not for everyone.”
Kuky Design offers an online quiz to aid designers, both enthusiastic and professional, in assessing what works for their (or their client’s) style. It’s a lighthearted way of getting information without having to fill in forms, send endless emails and have long chats. Piscopo and her team can then get everything a person needs and send back the design, shopping list and visuals.
“Taking an engaging quiz with beautifully curated images is, if anything, a lot of fun. On a more serious note, we use this tool to gather important information such as style preferences and budget.”
Despite all these avenues and opportunities, Piscopo says she still faces some resistance from other designers, who simply “don’t believe in designing online”.
“The launch of The Expert, and the approachability and affordability of their e-designs, have opened up the consumer market to the masses, but I don’t believe it to be a substitute just yet for face-to-face,” she says.
“I do see eventually a rise in faster processes, wider reach and digital accessibility, which should never mean a devaluation of one’s designs but rather a new way of branding oneself and communicating through a different channel. It’s about adaptability. Designers should be excited about it, not fighting it. The possibilities are endless.”
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