This year there has had many challenges for us all, often what gets us through these periods in life is by embracing what is good in the world and focusing on your passions.
We caught up with Nina (safely distanced by a Zoom call) who talked us through her journey as a passionate creative, Interior Designer, Model, small business owner (ni.ni.creative), Mother, and fellow Australian working her way through lock-down.
Nina has been inspiring us through her creativity, work ethic, and elevated bohemian style. This cool/casual style she so effortlessly carries has since landed her the mantel of our muse and the face of our upcoming Spring/Summer 2020 Collection.
What drew you to work within the design industry and how has your connection with it developed over the years?
"Growing up, there was no question, I have always wanted to work in building and in architecture, like my father. In fact, recently I found some drawings I did in Preschool that said ‘one day we will work together, dad’ accompanied by an itinerary of his day and how I would work with him. My Dad said that when I was 5 years old I would knock on columns to see if they were hollow or solid. I was just so immersed in building and design that it became a really clear path for me, so after completing school and taking a year off to travel, I studied a Bachelor of Interior Design at RMIT.
After graduating, I work for a couple of large architectural firms and a small boutique firm, this allowed me to build up my experience before transitioning to Neometro, that was really where I found my feet. The role wasn’t defined, there was no job description, this provided me with the opportunity to wear many hats and dip my toe into a variety of roles including sales, marketing, planning and site visits (with 20 men on-site and being the only woman on-site). I loved it".
You now work independently as a Model, Air BnB Host, Soft Furnishings product Designer, Interior Designer, and Stylist. How did you get to this point and how do you manage the juggle of so many roles?
"After having my son, I decided that I didn’t want to go back to an office job, instead I wanted to do my own thing. I had a lot of contacts within the industry and I decided that I just needed to start. I didn’t feel nervous about starting my own business, by that stage I had been in the industry for seven years, I had the confidence, I had the knowledge, and I knew the direction I wanted to go.
One thing I do miss from working in a larger firm is the collaborative process and the opportunity to bounce ideas around the office. Working on your own can be isolating. However, two or three years ago a girlfriend of mine started a Facebook page that essentially is a group established to connect Interior Designers in Melbourne working on their own. It’s become a sharing platform, which is nice to have for when you need to reach out".
As someone who works from home, you have had some practice before the pandemic. How has the pandemic affected other areas of your life and your ability to juggle the many roles you have?
"It has been tricky, but I am really lucky that I co-parent, which means that I have some when the kids are with there father to get things done. It is also about flexibility and changing the way you think, and understanding that everyone is doing the best they can. My clients have been so understanding, with the changes that the pandemic has brought Its at this time that you realize how to import good relationships are.
We think you have such a great cool/casual style. How would you define your personal style/aesthetic?
"I would say contemporary and comfortable, but I also like to add a little bit of joy or fun ( for example I have just ordered a bright pink sideboard for a client). When it comes to fashion I think my interior style is closely connected to my personal style. When I’m working from home I am looking for comfort and when I travel I tend to stick to a simple and minimalistic style, using neutral colours and not too many patterns. I am really into denim at the moment.
What are your plans for the future?
"I love my current lifestyle with my work, and that is included so much variety. I could be modeling one day, cleaning out my AirBnB the next, and working from my desk at home in my loungewear the next. I really love the variety it offers me. You want to love what you are doing at the end of the day".
Nina Provan Interior Design: http://www.ninaprovan.co/
Nina’s Air BnB: abnb.me/VB4HwlmTkV
Nina Provan Talent: thetalentburo.com.au/models/nina-provan/portfolio