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In conversation with the man behind ETQAAN

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Luxurymena sits with Ehab Mokhtar, Founder of Iwan Designs, to discuss his brand ETQAAN and the work of an interior designer.

Could you please present your brand and explain it in your own words for our readers?
Our brand ETQAAN represents a blend of luxury, precision and perfection. We try to impose those three pillars in our designs and products.

Were you always interested in design?
Design has been my hobby since I was a kid. I was determined to join a school of architecture; I wanted to be a designer and I guess I fulfilled my dream.

How would you define your style?
I always define my style as the human style. I’m always concerned about humans and their needs and what makes them happy; style in terms of ornaments and looks comes second and I find this answer in the Arabic style – it’s human style, handmade and its detailing is fascinating.

Where do you get your inspiration from?
Life is my main domain of inspiration. I try to travel a lot and meet people, listen to stories and read books. My inspiration might come from a myth or an old drawing on a wall, between book pages or under a rock… I’m always in the mood to catch the moment with my camera or my notebook.

What is the most challenging part of your job?
The most challenging part is to not repeat myself. I want to surprise my clients every time and this is very difficult to achieve. [It] needs a fresh mind and [the ability] to always accept changes.

Is sourcing pieces an issue?
Sourcing is always an issue. We use only the best and genuine materials, and this takes a lot of effort, as we don’t accept second-category materials. And, in sourcing ideas as well – we need to find new ideas in each project, so we need to look for new sources of inspiration.

What are the major differences between an interior designer and an interior decorator?
I think the interior designer will always be concerned about the design of space and the integration between spaces, while the interior decorator will have the task of upgrading spaces in terms of colours, accessories and details. I guess they complete each other and, when someone has both the hats, he produces great designs.

 

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