Inspiration: Riad and Laila

She is working hard to make her business in Scandinavian interior design items a success. Her home is both her sanctuary and showroom: ‘At our place we mix business and pleasure’.

Mumpreneur obsessed with Scandinavian design

Where: Woking, Surrey, UK

Who: Laila (33), Riad (42), Aymen (11), Salman (2)

Type: 3-bedroom semi-detached

Living surface: 100m2

In a nutshell: ‘A cozy Scandinavian interior style.’

Laila and her husband Riad live and breathe Scandinavian design. Laila: ‘Our whole interior is designed in a Scandinavian style. All rooms, also the children’s rooms, feature Scandinavian furniture. We love the simple silhouettes, clean lines, well-made and artisanal products, and the emphasis on natural materials.’

The couple and their two sons live in a newly built three-bedroom semi-detached house, which is quietly situated down a private road in a small village in Surrey. The house is set on two floors with a spacious sitting/dining room leading to the enclosed garden on ground level. The first floor offers three bedrooms and two bathrooms.

Laila is the driving force of all interior changes in the house. ‘I should admit I propose changes and make the decisions according to my taste and seasons or trends. My husband is obviously part of the discussions and his opinion is considered depending on the level of involvement (work) and cost…’

The couple’s interior changed a lot when they became parents: ‘Yes, we made a lot of changes, not only to make our interior safe and functional for a growing family, but also to make it as educational, cozy and enjoyable to live in for our kids, but also for us as parents.

For example, before we had kids, any spare room was used by my husband and I as a guest room with a modular office corner and space for workout. Now, it’s all about the kids. We want them to feel joy when they are at home, so they can find inspiration for their future responsibility as citizens.’

Another driving factor in their interior design choices is the fact that Laila and her husband have a web shop in Scandinavian design furniture and other items, called Story North. They have a selection of high quality Scandi design furniture, toys for children and they ship worldwide. Laila incorporates the items from her shop in her interior, so she can inspire her potential customers whom she reaches via Instagram and other channels.

Laila: ‘All my interior choices are made with this perspective of consistency with my passion for Scandinavian interior design style in mind. I always visualize what I want very clearly, then it’s planning, evaluating the cost, effort, timing and so on before implementing the changes. With other words, I combine “business with pleasure”.’

This leads to an almost flawless interior, although Laila occasionally makes a little faux-pas in her interior: ‘We bought a big table, when we moved in. We thought it was a no-brainer at the time (it was a great bargain and a Scandi design) but now I’ve realized it’s too big and we need to replace it.’

However, it’s just a small hick-up in an otherwise impeccable design that works for both the family and the business. And Laila’s motivation to grow her business is as simple as it is effective: ‘I wish to be an inspiration for my children and other people. I want to show that you can pursue your hobby on a professional level. It gives me a great sense of self achievement to now be a mumpreneur.’

If you are curious about Laila’s web shop Story North, you can visit it here.

All pictures are made by Laila (@storynorth) and she’s given me permission to use them for this blogpost.