Celebrating 10 years in business, Think Contemporary provides clients with a range of interior design services and design solutions. Building Ireland caught up with its co-founders Anthony Buggy and Joanne Kelly to learn all about this award-winning business.
These are busy times for the Dublin-based interior architecture and design practice Think Contemporary as the company gets set to mark a decade in business in 2020.
Operating with six staff from its offices in the Liberties, the company is currently immersed in projects all over the capital as it continues to grow its impressive portfolio.
It had been the vision for Anthony Buggy and Joanne Kelly when they first set-up their business venture in 2010, with the hope of creating a firm with a custom interior design service, professional expertise and access to a high standard of qualified tradespeople.
Building Ireland heard from both co-founders all about the company – from its early days to the state of business at the moment.
“We’re an interior architecture and design company that will be up and running 10 years in 2020,” explained Anthony.
“The both of us are ex-students of DIT, I graduated in 1994 and Joanne graduated in 2006. After working in Australia, I came back to Dublin and when the recession hit in 2008, I was made redundant with a company I had been working for.
“A year later, Joanne followed and I suppose we felt that we had something to offer. Now, 10 years later, we’re still here doing what we love.”
With the economy lopsided and the construction industry reeling, Anthony and Joanne had taken the bold decision in 2010 to start up their own firm.
As Anthony himself pointed out, they were going to be dependent on the residential side of things no matter what way they approached it.
However, they were confident of things taking an upturn eventually, as Joanne explained.
“We didn’t really have a benchmark,” she said. “For us, it couldn’t go downwards with the way things were so the only way was up. That’s the way we looked at it.”
Today, Think Contemporary is a successful design and interior architecture practice that has over 25 years’ experience in the interiors industry through its directorship.
The company provides a range of services from design to project management in order to make a project a success.
They have an experienced team in terms of commercial interior design, as well as residential interior design, and believe that great interior design can make a house a home.
When you work with Think Contemporary, you will work with qualified interior architects and designers to achieve your project goals.
With the Think Contemporary team working on your project – you are getting a team of the top interior designers Ireland has today.
That team draws draw upon a pool of experience, industry know-how and creative resources; allowing the Think Contemporary design practice to bring a high degree of technical, strategic and design expertise to all of their interior design projects.
Think Contemporary operate with a total service approach in mind, ensuring that they can encompass important aspects of the project such as spatial analysis, brand positioning and development, innovation spaces (R&D), lighting plans as well as bespoke furniture and lighting design.
The client is guided through an initial concept design phase, right through to the choice of finishes as well as the installation and fit-out of an interior.
Right now the company has various projects in the pipeline for 2020, as Joanne outlined.
“It has been a bit of an unusual year for us and that’s pretty much down to Brexit,” she said.
“There’s a lot of work in the pipeline though and one of those is a very large hospitality project which is to be opened in December 2020.
“We also had a project for Global Student Accommodation Ireland on North Circular Road that we just finished in December.”
Ready to mark an even decade in business, the people at Think Contemporary are still paying attention to all small details for best results.
As a result, the firm has worked alongside big name clients such as Savills, ESB, Mitchell McDermott and Tourism Ireland since its inception.
So what has been the secret to the continued success of Think Contemporary over these past 10 years?
For Joanne, it’s down to a professional approach taken by an excellent design team in 76 Thomas St.
“I think we’re quite collaborative here,” she said. “We work well as a design team and we’re willing to change our design to suit the client’s budget.
Co-founder Anthony added: “It’s always either Joanne or myself working on the project, so the client always has a direct line of communication to us.”
In November, Think Contemporary was shortlisted in three categories at the 2019 Fit Out Awards.
While the company finished up empty-handed on the night at the Clayton Hotel, Anthony and Joanne recognised the honour of being nominated to begin with, having been successful at the same event five years ago.
“We won Design Practice of the Year in 2014 and that was a nice surprise for us, as we’d only been up and running a few years at that stage,” said Anthony.
“We’ve been shortlisted every year that we’ve entered since and were nominated for three categories this year.
“It’s a great honour to be considered for those awards and the competition for them must be getting stiffer because we entered a couple more projects for this year and they didn’t make it.”
The year ahead will be about more of the same for Think Contemporary, according to its two directors, as they continue to focus on the works that they’re proud of and their clients are satisfied with.
This article was published in Building Ireland Magazine, July/August 2020, Vol 6 No 4