The Two of Us | Juliette Arent + Sarah-Jane Pyke
Juliette Arent and Sarah-Jane Pyke are a creative force to be reckoned with. Since they started their partnership in 2007, they have accomplished more than some designers ever dream about. With some major awards under their belt and a range of stunning interior designed spaces, from residential to commercial - it seems there really is no stopping these clever best friends. So what makes them such a great team?
Hello Sarah-Jane and Juliette, tell me about when you first met? Juliette: Oh hello! Sarah-Jane and I met just over 11 years ago while working at another interior design studio in Sydney. Sarah-Jane had a Karen Walker t-shirt that made a real impression on me! She was also really ballsy which I loved.
How long have you been working together - how did the journey begin? Juliette: The conversation started around this time of year, 10 years ago. By August 2007 we had our first project and set up office in my dining room. It was a lovely apartment/lovely dining room… but we were hungry to get out into our own office and very quickly moved into an office in Potts Point with The Mint Partners (Luxury PR agency) who were also starting out. It was such an exciting time.
What's the best part of working with a close friend? Juliette: I could not imagine having this business without Sarah-Jane. We are able to share in the achievements of the practice together but also share the often difficult times and decisions you are faced with as a business owner.
Sarah-Jane: Being in business certainly throws you some challenges, and I couldn't imagine getting through the last ten years without Juliette. What I love most is celebrating the wins together. Knowing that we share our success and we have built a business that brings joy into both our lives, is a feeing I cherish.
Do you ever disagree on a design decision? Juliette: Well, yes sometimes! However, in our practice we are a team of designers with all slightly varying views on design and aesthetics and we encourage the debate and welcome the difference of opinion. I think this is what gives our clients the best possible outcome.
Juliette, what is one unique quality that Sarah-Jane brings to the partnership? Sarah-Jane has a steely determination coupled with a softness that you require working so closely with people in their homes.
Sarah-Jane, what do you admire most about Juliette? Juliette has so much joie de vivre - it'a a part of everything she does. She pursues every project, every day, with so much passion and energy! It's infectious and brings such great energy into our business.
Has your design style evolved in the years you've worked together? Juliette: We have now had A&P for 10 years, so I would say that our style has matured, but our initial desire to inject spirit and personality into peoples homes remains unchanged.
Where do you gather inspiration - is there ever any shortage? Juliette: Travelling and time away from the office is crucial. When you are just a few steps away from the structure of running the business, and projects themselves – it is this time that you are open to new ideas, new ways of working and exciting possibilities.
What's your proudest achievement? Juliette: We have been very lucky to have won a number of awards, but I am really proud of hitting 10 years this year. It also seems rather odd – it feels like just a few years ago first we were setting up shop in my dining room in Darling Point!
What's in store for Arent and Pyke in 2017? Juliette: We are working on some really wonderful projects with some really wonderful people with a really wonderful team – doesn’t get better than that!