Sam Wood is studio manager at Material Lab, a design resource studio and materials library in London.
It was created by the UK’s leading tile manufacturer Johnson Tiles in 2006, and is a place where inspiration and creativity go hand-in-hand; where the A&D community can become immersed in surface coverings of every kind, no matter what they're made from.
Responsible for running the day-to-day operations at the Great Titchfield Street studio, Sam is the main port of call for architects, designers and material partners, including Dulux Trade, VADO & EGGER.
What inspired you to work in the design industry?
I see some sort of design imperfection around me every day. One of the reasons I wanted to get into the design industry is, in its purest sense, to help design interiors and develop products that improve people’s lives. If you don't divert too far away from the premise of creating to make people smile and feel comfortable then you can't go far wrong, in my opinion.
If they were to make a toy action figure of you, what would your accessory be?
A bottle of aftershave and a case of Beavertown lager.
To what degree have you controlled the course your life within the design world?
None whatsoever, and I think that's what makes me so free in this role. My nonchalant disregard for any convention gives me the freedom to think creatively and design based on needs as opposed to tradition.
What would be your dream interior project?
I was absolutely devastated to see the Notre Dame Cathedral suffer the horrific accident in April this year. My dream interior project would be to work on the reconstruction and restoration.
Tell us something you know you do differently than most people
I endlessly seek constructive criticism and am action-oriented in all aspects of the design and creative process. Most people are not as open and proactive as I tend to be.
If you could go back in time and speak to your adolescent self, what advice would you give them about the design world?
The majority of people in the industry are, to some extent, winging it, so keep true to yourself, your ethos and philosophy, and design interiors and products that make people smile and feel comfortable.