Meet the Designer: Jojo Barr
Jun 16, 2023
Back in 2014, Jojo Barr founded House Nine Design, a London-based architectural design practice with authentic, timeless design at its heart. Seven years later, it’s clear to see that what she started has really struck a chord with clients, who now approach Jojo and her expert team asking specifically for the ‘House Nine look’. We sat down with Jojo to find out more about the company – and why our tiles have been a great fit in more than one project…
Full name: Jojo Barr
Occupation: Creative Director at House Nine
Please tell us a little about House Nine Design..
I started House Nine in 2014 and have been working with an incredible team and suppliers ever since – many have been with me for the past 15 years.
What do you aim to provide your clients?
I strongly believe in authentic, timeless design where warmth, honesty and informality are the basis for my practice and feed through into everything we do.
We’re confident in our expertise at House Nine, from architecture and design to furnishings – always selecting the sustainable option where possible. Each element is essential to creating one cohesive look that is both considered and uncomplicated. We want to help our clients feel proud of their homes, each room at a time.
Can you describe the overall House Nine aesthetic?
Please can you give us an overview of the projects you’ve used Bert & May products in?
I’ve used them in my own home. We have also used them in the bathroom and cloakroom at our Fulham project and throughout our Gara Rock project.
I used the Raw & White Mosaic Zellige tiles in my ensuite, the Black Alalpardo tile in the bathroom and the Black Pradena in the cloakroom. We used so many products at Gara Rock including Encaustic Cement Hexagonal tile, Inverse Black Salon tile, White Metro tile, Black Otura tile and many more!
What do you think they added to the spaces?
It depends on the project. In some of the rooms, the tiles brought whimsy yet elegance to the space. In other rooms, the earthy tones brought warmth and softness, completely transforming the space itself.
What first led you to use Bert & May?
The exceptional range of colours, designs and, of course, the quality. Bert & May is a supplier we can strongly rely on for incredibly knowledgeable and helpful service. While tiles are carefully sourced throughout the world, it is also a British company with a focus on craftsmanship, something we align with ourselves.
How did you get started in interior design? Have you always had a passion for interiors?
Word of mouth. I worked my way up in the industry for about seven years before setting up my own company and was very lucky to have built good relationships with previous clients, developers and suppliers I knew. I feel like creativity and design have always lived within me, and I’m extremely fortunate to have found a career that lets me express this.
Does your personal interior style align with what you do for clients? Do you take the same approach to your own personal spaces as you do your clients’?
Absolutely. Being able to design with my own taste is such a blessing. It does take a while to establish your design style, but we have hit that sweet spot where clients come to us asking for the ‘House Nine look’. You need to believe in yourself and trust the process. Look outside for inspiration but ultimately, follow your intuition. I always say designing against the grain is like stroking your dog the wrong way. Doesn’t feel good for you, or the dog.
What’s your advice for creating a space that feels timeless?
Timeless design means not following fads or trends. There are of course things you can do to bring character to your home – for example, panelling your walls, beefing up your architraves and changing paint colours from room to room. But ultimately, we always focus on comfort and quality – your home needs to be somewhere you want to live in with furniture you can use. It needs to feel like you.
What’s coming up for House Nine Design in 2023 (and beyond!)?
We have some incredibly exciting full-scale projects lined up and already in progress. Our e-design services have also expanded into architectural e-designs, where our in-house architect provides technical advice on the practical elements of projects. Our product range is also growing, we are listening to what our clients would like from us and are very excited to bring out our quality homeware range to our online store very soon. As with all our products, this line has sustainability at its forefront.
Image credit: House Nine Photographer: Robin Quarrelle