Duos: Vasiliki Kyriopoulou & Brooke Radtke on Brent Cross Town.

Vasiliki and Brooke.

Brooke Radtke and Vasiliki Kyriopoulou sit back-to-back in Woods Bagot’s London studio. Interior Designer Brooke joined almost three years ago (she was also a valued employee in 2012), while Vasiliki – who studied architecture – has been at Woods Bagot for the past six years. Known for her talkative and approachable manner, Brooke is often found sketching concepts by hand or calmly problem solving with a client, while Vasiliki – who is known throughout the office for her ‘magic lists’ of helpful tips, tricks and contacts – can be found working out complex technical solutions or at the coffee machine perfecting her barista skills.

Vasiliki and Brooke worked together on Brent Cross Town – a major regeneration scheme in North London that was formed through a joint venture partnership led by Barnet Council and Argent Related. In 2019, Woods Bagot won the appointment to deliver all of the interiors for the project’s first two market sale residential buildings. Working closely with Argent Related’s team, Vasiliki and Brooke were instrumental in completing these designs – which included all 300 homes and amenities areas, as well as the temporary Visitor Pavilion including its café.

Vasiliki and Brooke on site at Brent Cross Town – The Visitor’s Pavilion

What is your favorite aspect of Brent Cross Town?

Brooke: Definitely the team. Collaborating with Argent has been a pleasure throughout, with a friendly and close-knit vibe from day one. Combine that with the level of talent of each member and it’s been a dream.

Vasiliki: It’s hard to choose but I’d have to echo Brooke’s sentiments on how great the people have been. Brent Cross Town was my first purely interior focused project at Woods Bagot and the team – who come from different professional backgrounds and varying levels of experience – were very impressive in terms of keeping a clear outcome in mind. Working with Brooke has also been a highlight, we’re birds of a feather when it comes to details and commitment to getting things right!

What is something you would only know about this project if you were working on it?

Vasiliki: It’s complexity. The time, the attention to detail and the process of communicating back and forth between us and our client makes this project as intricate as it is rewarding. Each design has been poured over closely – undergoing a long critique process that has formulated interesting and beautiful solutions. We hope the final result will feel very logical and seamless, almost so that it’s easy to forget how complex the design process really is!

Brooke: The scope. The project’s scale meant that the team was required to always keep the ‘big picture’ in mind in order to ensure that every element fitted with its wider setting. The Woods Bagot team was responsible for the interior design of the apartments and amenities areas, as well as the temporary Visitor Pavilion and café. To ensure that these worked well with the rest of the design, we needed to consider details like how the joinery in the visitor centre would fit with the pavilion, how the materials used in the apartments would reference the area’s gardens and artistic histories, and more – making the scope broader than someone who didn’t work on the project might expect.

The Brent Cross Town Visitor’s Pavilion

The plant store and cafe at The Visitor’s Pavilion, Brent Cross Town.

What was the first thing you did when you visited Brent Cross Town after the Visitor’s Pavilion completed?

Vasiliki: We went straight to the visitor centre for lunch and bought some plants for our homes (mine is still thriving in my living room). After that, we walked through the finished product checking (and double-checking) every detail.

Brooke: The best part about the visit was that I got there before Vasiliki so I got to see how excited she was when she arrived – it was like a kid at a fun park! Seeing her happy face really reinforced how proud I am of the work we’ve done with the team.

Brooke Radtke.

What has working on this project taught you?

Vasiliki: Working on Brent Cross Town has taught me so much about interior design. More than choosing pretty materials, furniture and finishes, working with interiors is about function. Down to the smallest detail, interior designers must consider how a space will be used – taking every moment and possible purpose into account. The year and a half I spent as the project’s technical delivery lead designing the front of house spaces and amenities has taught me that designing the flow of a space requires a level of detail and sensitivity to human behavior that separates it from the bigger, broader strokes of working at a more architectural scale.

Brooke: For me, Brent Cross Town reinforced the value of a clear design narrative. Empowered by a new cross rail station that allows residents to reach the bustle of London in 12 minutes, the garden filled project offers the best parts of city and country. During the initial concept phases for the interiors scope, we looked closely at how to harness North London’s association with the Art Deco and Arts and Crafts movements, as well as urban planning’s Garden City Movement – which fittingly aims to capture the benefits of the countryside and the city while avoiding the disadvantages of both. The result was a modern interior design approach to traditional design principals that prioritised crafted personal touches, attention to detail, pattern and colour. Given the length and scale of the project, having a clear concept in place that could be reinforced and referenced over the projects’ lifetime was time well spent – it certainly made my role as deign lead for the front of house spaces, café and show suite apartment interiors more streamlined in terms of keeping a clear vision in mind for the team.

Vasiliki Kyriopoulou.