One to Watch - Ekho Studio
Showcasing the work of interior design consultancy Ekho Studio
Words By Emily Martin
Ekho Studio is an interior design consultancy shaping how people live, work and play based on the belief that design can transform people’s lives. Rachel Withey and Sarah Dodsworth are founding partners of Ekho Studio and say: ‘We aim to enrich people’s lives through our designs and the spaces that we create, leaving a lasting and positive imprint. Put simply, great design is both our business and our passion. The word “Studio” is about collective creativity and collaboration. It doesn’t limit us to interior design – it’s about coming together to create great design and ensuring the best conditions for it to flourish’.
Launching Ekho Studio in May 2021, the duo met each around 10 years ago and instantly hit it off. ‘We have a lot of shared memories of working, travelling and socialising together over this time,’ they say. ‘We are both mums of two boys of almost identical ages, and have a very distinct and similar sense of humour. We laugh a lot and our famous cackling laughter can be heard well above a packed loud room. In a way we believe that fate brought us to this juncture’. The start of Ekho Studio provided them with an opportunity to re-evaluate their design careers and to define their ambitions, values and creative direction. The duo explain: ‘A big part of our values are hinged around us being hands-on in our work. We’d both come to realise how much we need to be involved in the day-to-day running of projects to feel properly satisfied and creatively stimulated.’ The studio’s first commission was with AstraZeneca UK. ‘During the process of leaving our previous roles and establishing Ekho Studio, we were approached by the client team to discuss and ultimately agree for us to take the project forward wearing our new hats as part of Ekho Studio’.
Globe Point, Leeds:
Image Credit: Tom Bird
A stunning new building in the Holbeck area of Leeds, the first in an exciting new masterplan. Ekho Studio’s design scheme celebrates the contrast between the grainy, hardindustrial heritage of Holbeck and its progressive, digital future. The final scheme tells this story in a fusion of two kinds of materiality; the rustic and highly-sustainable, together with super-smooth and more obviously ‘designed’ elements, allowing the two strands to come together.
Enso, Colchester, Essex:
Enso is a stylish student living project that brings parts of the university experience together in one inspirational environment. Here, student wellbeing comes first, with amenities like an outdoor courtyard gym. By exploring the heritage of Colchester, Ekho has used a palette reflective of the Roman rich terracotta reds, blues and bronze tones while also further incorporating the surrounding landscapes colour hues.
Image Credit: Billy Bolton
AstraZeneca UK’s new commercial head office workspace is spread across two floors of Number 2 Pancras Square, King’s Cross. The overarching ethos was to create a healthier, more comfortable and productive workspace balancing the needs of a supremely functional workplace, whilst creating a sense of aspiration. The design narrative is summarised as being about ‘new beginnings’ and ‘escaping to the office’.