A UCLan interior design student currently has her work on display in IKEA

A University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) student has had her interior designs brought to life as they are now on show in IKEA Warrington.

By Aimee Seddon
Saturday, 26th March 2022, 12:30 pm

Roxana Zamfir, 27, caught the eyes of the IKEA interior design team after designing a self-contained flat encompassing seven rooms, including a kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, lounge and office, using products stocked in the popular Swedish store.

All of UCLan’s final year BA Interior Design students had been tasked with creating a home of the future for the popular company, with Roxana’s metaverse and Dubai inspired skyscraper property being selected as the winner.

On receiving the once in a lifetime prize, Roxana, a part-time lighting designer for Lumenata, in Preston said: “When I found out I’d won I cried so much because I was so happy! It means so much to me that hundreds of thousands of people are seeing my creations as soon as they’ve started walking through the store. It’s just amazing.”

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Speaking about how she was inspired by images of Dubai, Roxana said: "I loved the clouds around the high-rise buildings and really liked the shades of pink, blue and yellow. This led me to use the shades of colour from the golden hour, which is the hour before sunset, and the blue hour, the hour before sunrise.” Pictured is the balcony.

Roxana, who was born in Romania but raised in Italy, says her love of design, drawing and photography was integral to her buying a one-way ticket from Rome to Manchester. and then making her move to Preston.

The former Vatican City tour organiser said: “I've always loved everything related to art, but my life had taken a different turn. Since all big dreams need a big change, I decided to leave and start over.

“My brother was the first person to believe in me, he hosted me in Lancaster for a year while I chose the university. Initially I looked at product design courses, but when I came across the interior design I knew it was for me because it encompassed all my passions.”

Roxana’s work has impressed IKEA bosses so much that she will start as a trainee interior designer when she completes her degree in mid-May.

Pictured are Roxana's designs for a bedroom and hallway, she also designed an office.

She added: “Winning this competition has exceeded all my expectations! When I was younger, I used to think I’d like to work as a salesperson in IKEA but to now have my work on display in IKEA and to be offered a job is mind blowing.”

Roxana’s work went on show in the living room department at the start of March and will be up until April 1.

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Karen Miller, Interior Designer at IKEA, said: “We were really impressed with the projects from the UCLan students. Many of the designs could have been a great addition to the IKEA showroom. Roxy’s project really stood out however as one which took us somewhere different. I had no idea what the Metaverse was until she jump-started my learning journey! We were looking for something we’ve never done before, and Roxy really delivered.”