An update from our project in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland. The Retrouvius Design studio are doing the interiors of this rare Georgian building that looks out over the southernmost peninsular on the Isle of Harris.
Layla is head of finance at our design studio (alongside her sidekick rescue dog, Miss Mouse - a sassy mix of Chihuahua, princess and Jack Russell… allegedly).
Her favourite stock item is our salvaged iroko laboratory tops. She remembers experiencing them when she walked into Retrouvius 7 years ago as wall cladding in our showroom. It’s not a material she had ever thought about before and responded to its warmth — “a sense of being completely enveloped by it”.
Layla’s journey from the Fine Arts to finance started at a photographic print studio and workshop that she ran in Hackney Wick - way before it became gentrified… moving on to work for an arts charity and in entertainment architecture. Formerly with lots of angry misunderstood young adults who could express their emotions and complexities through art and making and latterly, on huge global stage shows for the likes of Madonna — Rolling Stones — Pink Floyd and Tina Turner, before finding her way to Retrouvius.
Layla’s studious nature stirred nostalgic memories of science lessons, lewd tip ex doodles and blobs of chewing gum found by wandering teenage hands. One particular memory of Mr. Major sprang to mind — a scarlet faced, whiskey sipping grump whose disinterest in a whole classroom of gals inspired rebellious bullying.
Since rediscovering Retrouvius' stock of lab top timber Layla’s school memories have been positively upgraded. She enjoys the versatile and dynamic approach our team have put this salvaged material to re-use — particularly in bathrooms, kitchens and to make table tops.
Layla and all Retrouvians look forward to a time when we can gather around a refectory table of reclaimed iroko and enjoy our team lunch feasts once again.