Design Talks with Judy R Clark

03 Dec 2017
3 min read
FOUR speaks to acclaimed Scottish designer, Judy R Clark, about creating bespoke, unique & timeless designs for Edinburgh’s latest boutique hotel, G&V Royal Mile Hotel.

How did you get into your line of work?

I had a keen eye for fine art and design from a very young age and chose to go into fashion design when I was 17. I received a scholarship from my University and graduated with a first class honours. Moving back to the highlands for a while I was applying for internships and was offered one from the late Alexander McQueen. On returning to Scotland I was nominated young designer of the year and created a new collection that launched my label. Since then I have won various awards for my innovative approach to fashion anddesign.


How would you describe G&V Royal Mile Hotel’s designto those who have never visited it?

The hotel has a very unique style and the service is exceptional.The newly refurbished rooms are relaxing and really showcaseamodern twist of Scottishtextiles and print. The six luxury suites are all very individual and showcase each designers individualatheistic from painterly paradises to studio suites with roof top views to hand painted illustrations on the walls. The views form top floors areabsolutely spectacular!


What is your own personal experience of the hotel and what makes it so special?

For me service is always number one whenvisitinghotels and the G&V haveit bythe bucket load; the staff are sofriendlywhich makes your stay so much moreenjoyable.


Can you tell me a bit more about the project and yourdesignsat the hotel, do you have a favourite?

My two suites are inspired by fashion collections, from my trips to Morocco and India so have quite an electric feel. They mix 16th century hand painted ceilings with wooden beams with sumptuous velvet textiles. My favourite is the Nomad Suite;rich indigo walls, teal stopped back furniture, colourfulMoroccan lamps, an old writing desk with red leather insert create all add to the oldworldly feel. My twin sister Christine Clark,who is an artist, also designed one of the suites so it was a great opportunity to collaborate on the project with her too.


What was your initial brief for the hotel?

We were given thefreedomto becreative as weliked and really put our own stamp on the rooms. I created mood boards andconcept drawings to show theplanning team, they were super excited by all thedesigner suites and helpedcoordinate fixtures and fittings. After workingwiththe hotel toredesign their uniforms they had a good idea of my signaturestyleand invited me to create two suites for them.


What inspired thedesignof its interiors?

Iwould say Edinburgh’s landscape andarchitecture, with the textiles beinginspired by our rugged landscapes.Thecontemporaryfurnishing and slick lines create a truly 5*aesthetic. I have seen the CAD drawings for the new barrenovation and it’s going to bestunning, Ican’t wait to have a drink at the new bar.


Do you have a signaturedesignstyle that is apparent in all of your interiors?

I amusuallydrawn tohistoric pieces offashion anddesign and reinvent them to give them amodern twist. My signature style can be quite dramatic andhasa touch of British eccentricity.


Where and how did you source the products, materials and craftsmen for the project?

I sourced pieces from antique shops mostly and also a few localhomeward stores in Edinburgh that stockbeautifulinteriors.Homeron HoweStreet has such abeautiful collection. The owners travel all over to pick up one of pieces. I also took a short trip toMorocco to pick up some lamps for thesuites; they are sobeautifuland really make the rooms glow.


How important is it to you that you support local craftsmen in your interiordesignprojects?

Supporting thecreative industries in Scotland is a must. The projectwas a greatopportunity to look for those who could help transform thefurniture. Iworked with Eve from Native Folk and Anna from Halliday designs; they strippedback the old Victorian pieces in the studio andreupholsterthem into the mostgorgeous velvets. Both womenhave their ownbusinesses creating bespoke pieces for clients and were a dream to work with.


Favourite hotel, bar or interior that you wish you haddesigned?

I wouldlike to buy the old church at the end of the Grassmarket and create a champagne andcoffee barwith an art gallery.



Find out more about G&V Royal Mile Hotel, Edinburgh here | To find out more about Judy R Clark click here….