There’s a sudden feeling of joie de vivre that washes over me as I step into interior designer Sameera Ameer’s apartment in Dubai. Bathed in natural sunlight and colourful at every turn, there isn’t a corner that is dull—and this was just the intention. “To spark joy wherever possible, and to evoke a sense of calm as well as to inspire those who enter it was my goal,” says Sameera with a smile, walking me through the airy abode across newly renovated wooden flooring. “I find design is a great way to bring an element of fantasy and whimsy into our lives. Life can be quite demanding and strenuous at times and so I have always used colourful and playful elements in my designs and interiors as a way of injecting fun into a space.” This philosophy spills over into her professional life as well, forming the ethos of her brainchild, Studio Tsubi, previously known as Wild Child Designz.
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There’s a custom-designed, striking pink gallery wall accentuated by a neon artwork in the living room that immediately captures my attention. On it hangs an ethereal photograph of a hybrid woman surrounded by seagulls; a photograph of colourful townhouses; and a digital artwork of melting lipstick, to name a few. The centrepiece is the neon art which depicts two hands reaching out for physical connection, lighting up the entire space. A gift and also one of Sameera’s favourite displays in the space is a framed photograph of a girl with a falcon, often triggering artistic dialogue between guests.
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A few statement pieces include a sofa from Danish powerhouse, BoConcept, a tiger rug from Dubai-based Pardus Consilio, a dining table from The Line Concept, and acrylic dining chairs from Kartell. The mint green base of the bespoke rug, which took eight weeks to design, complements the dining table seamlessly, emanating a calming energy throughout the area. “It is a handmade labour of love.”
The bedroom is Sameera’s personal favourite space to lounge in. “It is like my own studio apartment, my little sanctuary,” she admits. “It is where I unwind, meditate, read, pray, watch TV and most importantly, sleep.” The emerald-hued bed, white bedside tables and dressing table have all been tailor-made by Sameera.
“I am grateful to experience living in Dubai, in one of the most thriving interiors industries in the world,” says the designer, who has been in the city for almost 13 years. “I have a background in interior design, but at the time, I was looking for unique furniture for my children and could not find anything that excited me.” And so in 2014, she launched her own line of children’s furniture, Wild Child Designz, growing the brand for four years until branching out to residential, corporate and commercial interiors in 2020. “When I launched Wild Child Designz, the brand was very much child-centric; the rebranding has been a long time coming.” The transformation was planned over the past eight years. “This year especially, after designing a corporate project, I felt it was the right time and we now have Studio Tsubi, an ode to my mother’s maiden name.”
Sameera has recently finished her inaugural corporate project in the UAE capital, Abu Dhabi, spanning 20,000 square feet of dynamic and interactive design. “I have always enjoyed challenging myself to get outside of my comfort zone, to grow and expand and learn from all the wonderful opportunities that come my way.”
One of the biggest goals of Studio Tsubi is to encourage positive change through mindful design. But what does this mean, really? “When I refer to mindful design, I aim to design with a greater sense of awareness of my client’s needs and goals, not just in a design sense, but in the broader sense of their lives,” explains Sameera. “Having just completed a course in feng shui, I aim to help my clients achieve this by diving deeper into their personality, goals, aspirations and what they wish to manifest into their lives and homes. The very essence of feng shui is the connection between people and their surroundings, helping to bring us into alignment with nature and the universe. There are specific tools, methods and remedies that can be utilised to achieve this. To tap into the unseen energies around us and to enhance my clients’ lives is something I am deeply passionate about.”
It is not surprising, then, that injecting personality into each project is Sameera’s forte. “I truly enjoy adding unique design elements and colours into my clients’ spaces.” Her purpose as a designer is to boost the quality of how a space is used and enjoyed, considering both beauty and usability. “We spend so much time in our homes that it is the most impactful way of elevating the lives of my clients. As for what’s next, I cannot wait to see what the new year brings my way.”
Whimsical, light, harmonious and all the while functional, Sameera’s space cleverly uplifts visitors’ moods through an eternally joyous ambience that spreads from within the designer’s mind and into the whole home—vision accomplished.
Photographed by Fritz Asuro