Twins Alisa and Lysandra Fraser became household names after appearing on not one but two series of The Block! Winning one of them, and being crowned the kitchen and bathroom queens, the former police officers now run their own online homewares store, A & L Collections, as well design consultancy, A & L Interiors.
While their experiences on The Block were a vital step in encouraging them to take the leap into design, they also mark their time as students at IIHS as a pivotal part.
Here’s what they had to say about IIHS:
How would you describe the IIHS course to someone who hadn’t heard of us?
The course teaches people how to style a property for sale and to give it the most appeal and most profit come sale time. It teaches you the basics of styling and it explains the core principals of design. Whether you want to start your own home staging business, do your house up for sale, or start a career in interior design this course will give you the knowledge you need to make it happen.
What are two things you learned about styling that you did not know before?
- Your styling can create its own story, such as creating vignettes from pieces of your past. It can also be done very inexpensively.
- When styling a space make your eyes dance around the room. Playing around with objects’ weights, scale and proportions will help you achieve this.
What surprised you about the IIHS courses and how they worked?
All the course material was very simple to understand and was put in layman’s terms not complicated designer terms.The flexibility of the course makes the learning process so much easier as it can fit in with your lifestyle. I think this is so important as life is just getting more hectic these days.
Who would you recommend the course to?
We’d recommend it to anyone who has an interest in styling homes for sale, someone who is looking at getting into flipping houses or anyone that has an interest in design. It doesn’t have to be for people who want to make a career out of design; it can be for the average person who would like to know the basic principals to decorate their own home. However if you want to pursue a career in the industry doing this course will also help you achieve that goal.
What can you do now that you couldn’t do before?
I definitely think that after doing this course we have a much greater understanding of the importance of scale, proportion, size and balance. We are now able to put these principals into use when designing rooms for our clients.
What is next for you two, and how has IIHS helped make this happen?
We are full steam ahead with A & L Interiors and have been very busy working with some awesome clients. We are working full time now and are learning so much and creating much better spaces thanks to IIHS. Doing this course has given us the confidence we needed to feel like we could stand on our own two feet in this industry.
How would this knowledge have helped you on The Block?
This is one thing we always discuss and reflect on. We look back and wish we had been armed with the knowledge that we have now. We would have been able to create much better rooms. Although some of our rooms hit the nail on the head, reflecting back on some of our other rooms, we totally missed the mark. It’s only now that we have done this course with IIHS we can see where we went wrong.
What’s one tip that you learned at IIHS that you wish you knew before?
To look at the space you have to work with and then – using the key principals of design – create your room around that. Don’t create your design and try and make it work within a space just because you like your design. I mean if you have a 2.5×2.5 metre room you’re never going to want to put a king size bed in the space, as the proportions would be out. However, if you use a single bed you’ve worked with your assigned space and created a well-proportioned room.