Milc Isn’t Just For Coffee
A bit of background
Milc is an award-winning interior design studio that has been established for over 14 years now. Based in London, it was founded in 2004 by two innovative interior designers and best friends – Polly Haley and Heidi Clark.
Having both previously worked for one of London’s top estate agents, they became aware of an increasing demand for quality interior design and styling in the competitive London property industry. During this time, they gained invaluable knowledge of the property market and decided to set up a company focused on achieving quality and excellence. I have now taken Milc on – leading a team of experienced interior designers, stylists and installation specialists to deliver eye-catching, innovative interiors.
My background is somewhat different. I started out in luxury health & fitness before my career spun off into luxury property development in 2004 – building large private residences on the Surrey-based Crown estates, and the well-known Wentworth and St George’s Hill private golf estates. I then moved into the luxury furnishing and interior design industry in 2010, helping to develop a fledgling design house into an established player with a c£9m turnover in just four years.
I was invited to join Milc by David Phillips Group when they acquired the company in 2015. Milc has been carefully integrated into the group to offer a high-end interior design and furniture package service to existing Milc and David Phillips clientele. Even though we’re part of the group, Milc operate independently to David Phillips and have our own design studio based in London. We have a phenomenal team comprising of eight stylists and architecturally qualified interior designers, all working together to develop the most wonderful and exciting interiors in London and beyond.
The interiors barista
As they say: Milc isn’t just for coffee. We offer a seamless luxury show home rental service, right through to bespoke interior architecture and design. We can facilitate everything from the FF&E (furniture, fittings and equipment); soft fit-out covering bespoke furniture, window treatments, soft furnishings and lighting; through to hard fit-out including flooring, kitchens & bathrooms, wall treatments and decorating.
Shake things up with our bespoke furniture packages
Milc’s bespoke furniture packages cover all furnishings from the upholstery & accessorising, to art work & window treatments. If you imagine turning a property upside down and shaking it, everything we put in would fall out. This service can be tailored to both owner occupiers and investors alike. We also commission one-off bespoke pieces that you cannot source through standard retail suppliers.
Rental service for those who like to keep their options open
The bulk of our rental furniture demand is creating show homes for London and Surrey’s high-end developers. We complete all of the research for the developer to help them create a look that appeals to the target demographic and facilitates sales. We are flexible with our rental offer, so the furniture can be purchased with the property if the buyer wishes to keep it. Our rental service has also proven popular with a lot of our HNW and celebrity clients who either don’t want to incur the upfront cost of purchasing the furniture, or prefer the flexibility of being able to change, replenish or remove items as they desire.
Full interior architecture and design transforming shells into homes
We then have the offer of full interior architecture and design, where we space plan and design everything from ‘the shell, to the champagne in the fridge’. We can also create detailed CGI’s to show the client different design options and how the space can work. We can come on board as early or late in a build programme as the client requires, working directly with their contractors and consultants if preferred.
Rather than multi-unit designs, we specialise in niche one-off creations, whether that’s helping a private client to create their dream home, or a developer wanting to deliver an exceptional penthouse in a larger development. We’re currently designing a full interiors scheme for a c£11m penthouse at St George’s One Blackfriars development. The client purchased it as a shell and hired Milc to complete everything from all of the joinery pieces, wall treatments and flooring to the kitchens and bathrooms. Many of our private clients are international and we have foreign language speakers as part of our business development team who hand-hold the client through the entire design process. We’ve also designed full marketing suites and communal areas, whether that’s a residents’ lounge or something more specialist such as cinema rooms and gymnasiums.
Award-winning design studio with a growing reputation
Our reputation has grown in recent years, not just through our private client work, but also through our work with leading developers such as St George, fellow Berkeley Group brand St Edward, and Ballymore Group. We recently won ‘Best London Show Home’ and ‘Best UK Show Home’ for St George’s Fulham Reach development at the UK Property Awards – and the same award in 2017 for Ballymore’s Royal Wharf development in Canary Wharf. In 2018, we were also shortlisted for ‘Best Luxury Living Space’ at the International Design & Architecture Awards for a beautiful private residence that we renovated on Cadogan Square.
Richard Chaplin is the Managing Director of Milc.