Alix Lawson was born in London to English and Australian parents and grew up in sub-tropical Queensland, Australia.
The big skies, ocean, vast spaces and indoor/outdoor lifestyle of those years greatly influenced Alix’s strong eye for clean lines, simplicity, texture and timeless design.
Surrounded by Australia’s leading Architects and Interior Designers, a passion for interiors and style was ignited that would lead Alix back to London where she would go on to graduate from the Inchbald School of Design.
At the age of 23 she founded Lawson Robb and ran the award-winning Interior Architecture and Interior Design practice until 2018. Alix’s work has been published in numerous design magazines including the FT How to Spend it, the Sunday Times, Vogue and GQ and she has been on the judging panel for the World Interior News Awards and the A and D Trophy Awards in Asia.
Alix has worked globally on projects for prominent families and developers in London, Europe and the Middle East.
In 2018 she established a new Interiors Lifestyle brand Alix Lawson.
Tell us a bit about yourself, background and your current role
I was born in London but grew up in Queensland, Australia so I have always had somewhat of a dual identity. After moving back to London and studying at Inchbald I founded my first interior design & architecture practice at the age of 23 and ran the award-winning company until 2018. I’ve always been entrepreneurial and unable to sit still, so soon after this I founded a new Interiors Lifestyle Brand Alix Lawson & the boutique studio of five is currently working both globally and in Prime Central London. I love my new role and having a smaller team enables me to reconnect with my creativity and why I love interiors, which I think had become lost in the business of a bigger company.
Did you ever sit down and plan your career?
I knew from and early age that I wanted to have a design or architectural practice that was based in London so on the one hand yes, but equally I believe in just getting started as you learn so many lessons along the way and there is a lot that you can never plan for.
Have you faced any challenges along the way?
Yes, establishing a business without any network having just come from Australia was a huge challenge, particularly at such a young age. However, learning how to make connections and establish a network are really invaluable lessons so I am glad that I learned them. The crash of 2008 was also a huge learning curve business-wise for me (and I’m sure many others) and it taught me how to do things differently next time around. Our business was able to survive where many other design and architectural firms did not.
What has been your biggest achievement to date?
I have always been really proud of how my career came into existence; I put myself through design school and built an award winning interior design studio from scratch after arriving back in London knowing almost no one.
What one thing do you believe has been a major factor in you achieving success?
Relentless optimism is sometimes looked down-upon in business but when backed with a powerful work ethic I think it is a true asset. A hard-working attitude and the belief that anything is possible was instilled early on as my parents were always incredibly encouraging of me to go and pursue my dreams and work hard until they were achieved.
How do you feel about mentoring? Have you mentored anyone or are you someone’s mentee?
I think mentoring is fantastic and a huge asset in business (and particularly entrepreneurship) but there aren’t enough opportunities out there for women, which definitely needs to change. I haven’t been mentored before but would love to mentor someone if given the opportunity.
If you could change one thing to accelerate the pace of change for Gender Parity, what would it be?
It’s finding ways that men and women can compliment each other and not compete with each other as we both have different strengths.
If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self what would it be?
Try not to get bogged down in the minutiae, which is something that I think diminishes with age, confidence and experience but a really important lesson to learn nonetheless.
What is your next challenge and what are you hoping to achieve in the future?
Having spent the majority of my career solely in the service industry we are now looking to expand into product. My main hope with this expansion is to bring high end quality and the wisdom of industry experience to consumers at an affordable price point.