Story by Natasha Simpson.  Photos compliments of Stephanie Barnes Interior Design Studio.

Stephanie Barnes is arguably one of the most highly regarded and in demand Interior Designers in Barbados. A West Coast Canadian, Stephanie was born in Vancouver and raised in nearby White Rock, British Columbia but she kept her Caribbean heritage alive with annual family visits to Barbados. Her Grandfather Therold Barnes was best friends with Frank Collymore and highly involved in the Arts as well. He was a Designer/Architect by trade and designed the Caribee Hotel, Hastings as well as residential homes, mainly for the family.  He was also the set and costume designer at the Empire theatre so it’s quite natural that creativity is in her genes. 

Stephanie Barnes Interior Design Studio was born after she met her husband on one of her “Bajan vacations”, married and settled on the Island eventually. The studio is a full service interior design firm specializing in private residences, commercial projects and hospitality projects, both in Barbados and Canada. Her designs and ideas have received both local and International recognition and her design studio was awarded the prestigious International Virgin Atlantic Caribbean Property Award at five star status, the highest level achievable. As Principal of the design firm, Stephanie’s attention to detail is apparent in all of her jobs. She seamlessly blends the client’s personal style with her distinct design vision resulting in spaces that are chic, classic and unique. 

A successful soccer player for British Columbia who earned an athletic scholarship to the USA, Stephanie spent almost 20 years following her athletic passions. After concluding her sports career she focused her discipline, drive and talent on her dream of becoming an Interior Designer.  Graduating uppermost in her class, with an Associates Interior Design Degree from the Art Institute of Vancouver, was just the beginning of a life-long passion and appreciation for design, architectural preservation and the environment.

Her love for design, though focused most of the time on her work, encompasses an array of other interests, some less apparent than others. Her interest in fashion came as little surprise as evidenced by her trendy but classic style, quite similar to her interiors. Stephanie is not only a lover of fashion but an avid sports fan and, naturally as a Canadian, a hockey lover!

Perhaps less obvious, but equally relevant, are some of her other interests. She works in Barbados to help the Animal Welfare Society, and along with her husband, rescues mistreated dogs and strays nurturing them until they are healthy and then finding them homes.From an early age volunteer work has always been important to Stephanie and still is. At the age of twenty she coached a Men’s Special Olympic team in British Columbia; in Nashville she worked with the Drug and Homeless Society and throughout her years in the US, she was a part of women’s homeless abuse programs. Upon learning more about Stephanie it is apparent that not only do her interiors have many layers, but she too is multi faceted.

The Stephanie Barnes Interior Design Studio operates both in Barbados and the West Coast of Canada. The studio is a full service interior design firm specialising in private residences, and commercial spaces including restaurants, lounges, condos, malls and hotels. The studio’s services are not limited to interiors and extend to full lighting, electrical designs, door and window schedules and designs as well as exterior consultations and designs such as gates, driveway concepts and more. The Studio is made up of a talented, diverse and highly qualified team with Stephanie at the helm. Lori Ridley is the associate architect and Tanya Foster, design associate and custom painter/artist. Stephanie’s expertise, attention to detail and design philosophy, paired with her team’s strengths, guarantees projects that are not only timeless, but flawless as well. 

Stephanie is perhaps best known in Barbados for her design at Cin Cin by the Sea restaurant, for which she was awarded the prestigious International Virgin Atlantic Caribbean Property Award at five stars, the highest award presented. The International Property Awards are open to residential and commercial property professionals from around the globe and they celebrate the highest levels of achievement by companies operating in all sectors of the property and real estate industry.  A world-renowned mark of excellence, which Stephanie’s design at Cin Cin was so deserving of. She has recently been nominated again for this year with the project to be announced.

Cin Cin’s décor embodies everything that is chic with a refreshing contemporary and elegant design. Other varied commercial projects include the food court at The Sheraton Centre Mall and The Mews Restaurant, Holetown. The difference between these three projects alone is a testament to her versatility. She is currently working on the renovation of Pisces restaurant in St. Lawrence Gap which will be completed this year.

Stephanie’s residential projects are equally impressive with a portfolio that boasts quality projects with variations in size, budget and style. Some of these include a luxurious villa in Sandy Lane which the Stephanie Barnes Interior Design Studio custom designed everything from bespoke iron – work doors and staircase to bathrooms and exterior design. A Cape Cod inspired home in British Columbia, completed with a conscious budget proving that high style can be both stylish and affordable. Then a historic Barbadian plantation home she masterfully restored, bringing fresh life to original rooms and enhancing what was already a architecturally relevant home. A contemporary residence at Apes Hill Club showcased high-end finishes and custom designed fixtures not to mention a museum worthy collection of contemporary furnishings and artwork juxtaposed with thoughtful accents.   

In addition to designing commercial and residential spaces, the Studio has also been responsible for some of the most alluring cocktail parties and charity events on the island, including the highly successful Charity Chicks ‘Tickled Pink’ parties in 2010 and 2012 on the roof top at Limegrove Lifestyle Centre. Stephanie Barnes Design Studio is poised for a continued and highly successful career and we will be watching out for her elevated and inspirational designs for years to come.

 

Q.  Who are some of your design influences?

A.  Some of my design influences are architects and designers who are strongly influenced by nature and incorporate the inside with the outside elements such as Frank Lloyd Wright. Also Iris Apfel a famous fashion icon and interior designer born in the 20’s whose work is still current to this day. Great design is always timeless.

 

Q.  You seamlessly blend contemporary and traditional pieces with ease, which can often be quite difficult to do successfully. Are there any rules to follow when doing this?

A.  You need to find the right balance. A mid century item mixed with a modern piece may work nicely but certain eras do not always harmonize as well. Keep in mind the era of the piece, the lines, the purpose and where it is to be used as that plays a large factor. Combining materials from traditional and contemporary sources can create interesting spaces but attention should be paid to ensure they scale out appropriately.

 

Q.  When not working what are some of your interests?

A.  That does not happen very often :) but, spending time with family, friends and my husband are on the top of my list. I love fashion so I check out the latest styles and as a former athlete I try to stay connected to the sports world. Traveling is also very important to me, and definitely my dogs, which are my children.

 

Contact Stephanie on (246) 271-0447 or (246) 826-1749

Email her at: studio@stephaniebarnesdesign.com

To view more of her work visit www.stephaniebarnesdesign.com

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