PLS Design Studio: Tailors of Space

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PLS DESIGN STUDIO: TAILORS OF SPACE

 

By Courtney Mras
Photo courtesy of Rosaria Parretti


Spring 2016 Broadcasting New Media students recently met with Lino Losanno and Lorenzo Perini, the founders of PLS Design. This encounter was an opportunity for FUA students to interact with a leading architecture and interior design firm from a local and international perspective thanks to PLS’ Florentine location and involvement in projects worldwide. For Prof. Rosaria Parretti, the visit was also a “chance to conduct a real interview while practicing the professional skills that this significant aspect of broadcast journalism requires.”

If you were asked how you would define someone whose job description is a "tailor," it's likely that you would take a minute to mull over the meaning of this word and come up with some personal variation or version of it: "A person whose occupation is making fitted clothes for their customers." And while you may be right, this term is potentially much broader. After visiting PLS Design studio and having the opportunity to sit down and talk to Lino Losanno and Lorenzo Perini, the two architects who established PLS in 2002, I learned an entirely new meaning of what it is to be a "tailor" and why this is a key term the duo uses in describing what they do.

Losanno and Perini first met in 1996 while working as colleagues at Nardi Associates where they were dually responsible for the architectural firm’s retail sector, which included many high-end fashion clients such as Dolce & Gabbana, Valentino, Ferré, Malo, Nannini, and Iceberg. From 1996 to 2002, the two built up Nardi client relationships and gathered experience in the world of architecture. But in 2002, they decided it was time for them to build their own venture in Florence. Together, Losanno and Perini opened PLS Studio, which would expand beyond their experience in architectural design with a newly refined focus on interior design as well.

With two architectural degrees and half a decade of experience in the industry, I couldn't help but ask the gentlemen what inspired them to move towards interior design when founding PLS. Losanno explained that architecture and design are two entities that shouldn't be divided. He described how they "Try to combine both [architecture and interior design], getting inspiration from architecture into interiors and the reverse." He also touched on the fact that in the world there are so few places to really build from the ground up. In much of the world, the architecture is already there, so his education and experience was naturally converted into interiors because it was an immediate area of necessity and application.  

Leaving behind their comfortable careers at Nardi in order to build their own firm was a big challenge for Losanno and Perini. But with great risk comes great reward, and in recent years it is clear that this leap of faith has paid off.  Since opening the studio, they have been involved internationally in many different projects in both home and retail environments for brands including Gucci, Tom Ford, Moncler and many more.

Each project undertaken at PLS is specifically tailored. From designing a home for a family in India, creating the interior spaces of a children's boutique, or redesigning the concept of the Gucci museum, each project and each client has something different to offer. Losanno shared that working for a smaller boutique or brand where you have more creative freedom is very different from adapting to the needs of big brands. At companies such as Tom Ford or Gucci, there are multiple opinions and industry figures such as directors for visuals, style, art, etc. to collaborate with. He described how the challenge at PLS is to balance the many ideas into the concrete reality of the retail space in order to meet each client’s specific needs. Losanno explained in comparison to the design world, "We are not designers, we are more similar to tailors who create a space that fits you and that you can be comfortable in."

Everyday at PLS, clients come to Losanno and Perini with their requests for spaces both big and small. The two then enter into these spaces and work with their clients' ideas, bringing them to life in a physical form. Losanno described a seemingly obvious but resonating truth: "If you are in a space you like, you simply feel better. You live better, and you are happier." Delivering this happiness to their clients is what they described as the ultimate reward in their profession.

Want to know more? Listen to the Blending Radio podcast featuring PLS Design and visit the studio's website.


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