Atticus & Milo

8 years ago
4 minutes

Maximising light and function within your apartment is the key to any well balanced and happy apartment.

Caecilia Potter, the founder of renowned interior designers, Atticus & Milo, spoke to about how much fun decorating an apartment is and should be, and how important it is to understand both function and form.
Where did Atticus and Milo begin, it is a really interesting name?

Caecilia Potter:
The name actually means two things, both of which are very important to me. Firstly, because they are the names of my sons, but importantly to the business, it represents the balance between form and function. It comes from the Roman period, to which Atticus was a Roman, who went to Athens, and loved all the bricks, it was after this that became renowned as a promoter of brick design, thus he represents the Greek form. Whereas Milo, a Roman painter, was an admirer and forward-thinker of the Roman function, as seen in the aqueducts. I have a really strong passion for architecture and interior spaces that are inviting, with a wonderful feeling of experience as you engage with the space - ultimately well designed spaces make a happier occupier.

So function (Atticus) and form (Milo) need to work together in order to be succesful?


When you are designing, whatever you are designing, be it an interior landscape, a chair or a building, it is important to consider both how it looks, but also how it works. If you make something really beautiful, but it is impractical, then the space isn’t going to be that much fun to live in - we aren’t trying to make art galleries, but actual liveable spaces. If it is too dark, due to lack of light, or too messy because storage hasn't been adequately thought-out, then the space isn’t successful, so it is really important to consider all the facets of design, not just how it looks. Whether you approach spaces emotionally, like myself, or logically, like some other designers, understanding function is equally important as understanding form.

Trends seem to dominate a lot of interior content, do you follow them, or do you create your own?

I suppose what I believe in, in terms of brief and context, is that I am not really interested in trends. Architecture and interior design should flow and resonate with the original idea proposed when you are briefed to create the space. If the designs you create feel right in the context, and feel positive, then that usually means something deeper than following a trend. We should look at a product and say ‘this is a great product, but does it suit our design protocol?’ It all needs to follow a story - we love the exploration of the story, as well as the history of the client, and these things influence our choices when creating the space.


Are trends seasonal? Or do they operate ignore the environment outside of the apartment?

Definitely. And I think all beautiful homes, in most cases, have a fantastic relationship with light. Even in its most basic way, all good architecture is responding to light at all times. However, in every home there will be aspects that are not ideal - and this is where we, as designers, have to look at manipulating a space so that it is not a nuisance or interrupting light. If its well designed with the sun, in the sense that there is a relationship with the garden or balcony, then all that is needed throughout the differing seasons, from say Winter to Autumn, is to just make some small temporary changes that will enhance the light.


What does designing an apartment bring that other spaces don’t?

We love designing apartments. It’s interesting because I think since we have so much experience dealing with high-end residential spaces, that going to an apartment, with its compressed living, is just so much fun! We are currently doing an apartment that is around 50sqm, but despite the chance in space, we have applied the lessons we have learnt over the years about living, and how people want to live. We have still managed to get a really beautiful study nook that is flooded with light in the apartment, despite a smaller space. I love the way it is more of a design challenge, as you really have to make every square foot  or meter of the apartment work - you effectively have to triple the potential of the space.