2LG Studio reveal their top films for design inspiration
If you’re an interior design enthusiast, you’ll know 2LG. The interior design duo with a penchant for colour and curves with a hint of deco have gathered quite a following since they opened their doors five years ago. After bumping into founders Russell Whitehead and Jordan Cluroe at both The Design Museum and the Amara Interior Blog Awards, Film and Furniture founder and editor Paula Benson was fascinated to discover that this married couple have backgrounds in the worlds of stage and screen. She asked them to divulge their favourite films for design inspiration.
Whitehead and Cluroe, aka 2LG Studio run their interior design practise from South East London. If you’re on Instagram or read the design pages of broadsheets and magazines you’ll know their dynamic house like the back of your hand! They met as actors after Whitehead trained on the prestigious Musical Theatre course at the Royal Academy of Music and Cluroe on the acting course at the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts. They were both working in London as actors (Russell in West End theatre and Jordan in television) when they discovered a mutual love of design which became a creative outlet outside of their acting careers, so it’s no surprise that their interiors have a certain theatrical feel.
After acting for ten years and then renovating their home together whilst designing and making their own screen-printed home accessories, they made a big decision to focus on their design business. “We quickly realised we didn’t want to be ‘makers’ and that we enjoyed the variety of full interior projects, so we slowly built up a portfolio of residential projects and then launched our own business, 2LG Studio” Whitehead told Film and Furniture.
F&F: How would you define your interior design style and approach?
2LG: “We love to work with people, we are interested in stories and character and drama. All down to our training as actors perhaps. Theatre and film are so collaborative.”
A sense of drama is something that 2LG have naturally brought into their design work, often working with new designers and established brands on bespoke items, collaborations and new collections. “Colour is key to our work and we love to bring strong design to the domestic setting. Function and architecture are really important to our approach but above all there is a playfulness to our work. We enjoy taking risks and creating brave schemes that enhance the experience of living in a space.” they told Film and Furniture.
F&F: Who are your clients?
2LG: “Our clients are amazing, they never cease to amaze us with their bravery and creativity. Each of them is so different and we embrace that. It keeps our work so interesting and we are so inspired by our clients.”
F&F: Do you watch movies regularly? If so at home, or at the cinema?
2LG: “We love nothing more than watching films and going to the theatre. Movies are our escape and our relaxation. Sundays are for horror films in particular. A guilty pleasure. We used to go to the cinema often but watch a lot at home now because we have a dog, so we love to cuddle up with him on the sofa after a long week and watch a film. But we do go to the cinema occasionally too.”
F&F: Talk us through your favourite films for interior design and furniture inspiration.
Batman Returns (Director: Tim Burton)
2LG: “We love Batman Returns, particularly the Catwoman transformation scene. Oh the drama! Oh the pink! Oh Michelle Pfieffer! Heaven. Love the neon sign (so big right now in homes and the wild disruption of the cutesy pink set with the strong black line of a graffiti spray can.
“We love to disrupt an interior scheme with so unexpected elements to create this drama and fun. We had a bespoke version of Catwomans neon sign made for our living room and it even flickers between Hello There and Hell Here (as Michele Pfieffer smashes two of the letters in the scene).”
I Am Love (Director: Luca Guadagnino)
2LG: “Starring the ultimate Tilda Swinton and set in the incredible Villa Necchi in Milan, I am Love was a major inspiration at the beginning of our design careers. We went on a pilgrimage to Milan five years ago when we first launched to visit Villa Necchi and soak it up. It was an incredible experience that transformed us and opened our minds.
“The Italian deco revival has been a major influence on the interior scene for a while now. We were so inspired by this film that we designed a collection of furniture based on some of the shapes and colours we had seen at Villa Necchi.
“We named our sofa design after Tilda Swinton and the bed design after the film’s director, Luca Guadagnino. The 2LG Collection is now available to order from Love Your Home.”
2001: A Space Odyssey (Director: Stanley Kubrick)
2LG: “Kubrick was an incredible visual artist and he used soundtracks and sets to create such tension and atmosphere. There is a theatricality to it that we love. In particular the scene in 2001: A Space Odyssey where the otherworldly classic bedroom set is disrupted but the stark white lit floor, like a sci-fi heaven. It is such an iconic visual.
“We are not suggesting that everyone goes and puts an illuminated floor into their home (although we did look into this once and it was astronomically expensive) but the concept of playing with different elements in a room to alter the perception and create tension between polarised ideas is something we constantly think about In our design work.
“Our new capsule lighting collection for Cameron Design House was a nod to this. Taking the idea of the strip light and bringing it into the context of our victorian home.”
Suspiria (Director: Dario Argento)
2LG: “Horror is something we love and no horror is more visually stimulating than the cult classic, Suspiria. The colours are so grotesquely vibrant and rich, it is wonderful.
“Recently we designed a bathroom inspired by this movie for CP Hart in their Waterloo flagship showroom. It is still open to view now and is all red and pink with curves and windows. There is something satisfyingly terrifying about it as the colour is engulfing and the curved windows give it a voyeuristic vibe.”
Film sets and production design can inspire the design of our homes in so many ways and 2LG managed to cite some of our own Top Ten films here! Their other films for design inspiration include Sex and the City (for SJP), Jim Henson’s Labyrinth, Tom Ford’s A Single Man and Mannequin (for those 80s vibes!).