About two years ago, we noticed a minimalist storefront along a pokey strip of Bloor Street, just west of Lansdowne. The stencilling simply read “Fohr Design Studio”. We investigated: it turns out that an interior design studio with architecture chops had moved in and the caliber of work intrigued us. The focus of Fohr is mainly residential – with hospitality design services offered, too – with looks ranging from transitional to urban chic to modern, according to the client’s needs. Where do you fit along this spectrum and how can Fohr help you? Let’s get to the know Fohr a little better by hearing from founders Heather Lewis and Rania Ismail Cherry.
Designlines: Where did the principals previously study and work? When and why did you start your own studio?
Lewis and Cherry: We both have Bachelor Degrees in Interior Design from Ryerson University; right afterwards we both worked for respective high end interior designers in Toronto and New York. We started Fohr Design Studio in 2012 in order to have more creative control over projects. It began as a collaboration between four interior designers and has evolved since.
Designlines: Is the studio architecture or interior design-based? What accreditations do the principals have?
Lewis and Cherry: Our studio is Interior Design–based; Heather is NCIDQ-certified and a member of ARIDO and IDC.
Designlines: What is the studio’s focus? Why this sector, and what do the clients come to you for?
Lewis and Cherry: Our focus has been on residential spaces with some hospitality. The projects range in scale – from new build houses, home additions and renovations to furniture and decor selection and creation.
Clients come to us for a customized design that is reflective of their individual style. While we do have our own aesthetic, the clients also help drive the end result of a project through a collaborative effort.
Designlines: What are some of the studio’s key strengths?
Lewis and Cherry: We create high-end spaces that also incorporate economical solutions by mixing both luxurious and affordable pieces.
We design purposeful and functional spaces that also have a beautiful aesthetic. We understand that our clients are busy with their day to day lives and it is important for us to give them a space that works for their individual needs or those of their family.
Designlines: Who are some of your key collaborators?
Lewis and Cherry: Our favourite builders/contractors are Rossini Custom Homes, Sexton Works, and Jomar Carpentry. For custom fabrication, we prefer Apex. For flooring and surfacing we go to Stone Tile. Y&Co. and Threadcount is where we head for rugs and textiles. For upholstery and custom furniture, it’s Décor Studio, and Speciality House for drapery.
Designlines: What sort of projects do you have on the go now?
Lewis and Cherry: We have so much on the go right now, including a home renovation in the Beaches and a cottage reno in Muskoka. There is a new build home underway midtown Toronto and, in Prince Edward County, we are merging two homes and doing a complete renovation.
If you are a proof-is-in-the-pudding sort of person, click below to see more of Fohr’s work: