How did you start in interiors?
“When I was younger, my family decided to leave Holland for warmer climate as my father was a fruit broker. So, I grew up in South Africa in the 80s when luxury interior design was pretty much undiscovered. When I realised it was a possible career, I was amazed. I thought 'could something that is so creative and so much fun be a real job?' It seemed it was, and I was delighted!”
Did you need any qualifications?
“Yes, I did a qualification in South Africa, and soon after graduating I started work on my own designs as well as gaining invaluable experience with other designers. Once I got to a certain level of experience, I decided the best place to come to for the next step of my career, would be the UK. So I moved here in 1999.”
Continue reading René Dekker – His Work and How He Got Here
When René Dekker moved to the UK from South Africa (originally from The Netherlands), he was thrilled with his career choice in interior design and the considerable experience he had already gained as an interior architect. “Although I had a two-year higher diploma, I had made some wonderful contacts in the industry. At the time, I would have said that this tenacity would get you everywhere, but that was 20 years ago. Now a qualification is paramount,” he says. “There are a limited number of jobs with far too many people applying, so the more qualified you are the better.”
As René started to climb up the industry ladder, it soon became clear that his skills and ambition were going to need a large arena in which to grow. “I had been employed as Head of Residential Interior Design for several years at a large architectural practice, and although the role was challenging and the environment was great, I wanted to own my own future. My business partner, the Financial Director, had suggested a few times that I go solo but I resisted. Eventually I faced up to the fact that the move would be for the better.”
Continue reading René Dekker — The Success Story