ITALIAN BARK – Interview with Elisabetta Rizzato

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Bojana Bajac

SampleBoard Brand Ambassador


The cradle of design, Italy always has design candies in its pockets, and today we are sharing one of the sweetest ones with you. We have a pleasure to welcome Elisabetta Rizzato, Italian architect, interior designer and a person behind the interior design blog ITALIAN BARK here at SampleBoard blog. Elisabetta has been blogging since 2013, and over the years she has built one of the greatest Italian design blogs, written in both Italian and English. She was so kind to share her piece of mind with our community.

Design interviews on SampleBoard - Italian Bark - Interview with Elisabetta Rizzato

What inspired you to start blogging? Could you ever imagine that your blog would turn to be such a success?

Seriously, I started the blog because I was really bored at the job I had. It was a way for me to feel inspired and to keep myself updated with what I love. I couldn’t imagine it would have become an inspiration for many people out there and I’m really happy for it.

We wrote about the importance of blogging for interior design professionals on our blog lately. What do you think are the most important benefits blogging has brought to you (both professionally and personally)?

There have been so many benefits to both my job and my personal life. First, running a blog is a way to keep myself updated with the latest products, news on design, projects, and this is really helpful for my projects as well. Second, the blog really brought me many new contacts for my work and also new projects. I can say now it truly changed my life!

Design interviews on SampleBoard - Italian Bark - Interview with Elisabetta Rizzato

Mondays on Italian Bark are reserved for Made in Italy. Did this choice help you build connections and distinguish yourself in the cradle of design?

I think it is important to find a niche when you are starting a blog, on the web, there are really millions of websites and you must be specific and focused in what you do to make a blog stand out from the crowd. However, I also want to write about what I like, from different styles and countries, so creating just a regular column about Italian design was the good compromise.

How do you keep the spark alive?

By always looking for new inspirations and sources.

Your blog went through some major changes lately, in both design and content terms. What made you do so many new things at the same time?

For sure, the fact I really love what I do!

You do everything on the blog by yourself? Do you have some formal knowledge of web design or was it all the product of trial and error?

I’ve always been a nerdy one since I was very young. I’ve always loved to learn things concerning computer and software, so I did everything by myself, just by following tutorials and by reading other blogs!

Photo: Aurora Scuderi

You publish blogs five times a week. That is a lot of work. How much time does it usually take?

I use to divide my days half working on the blog/social media and anything concerning the blog, half working on my projects (very general talking but of course it depends on deliveries and ongoing projects!!). Now I have some help with contributors for the articles, but I’m working more on other things for example newsletter and downloadable contents.

How would you describe your own style?

My style is minimalist yet cozy.

What is your opinion on design trends? Do you incorporate them into your work and if so, which ones are your most and least favorite?

Even though on the blog I love to write about trends, I think that for a project trends can be a good source of inspirations, but you first have to follow your taste and what you really like. I love the mix of Scandinavian and Japanese design, bright and light spaces, so I’m not so much into the moody and dark trend.

Visual concepts are the best way to communicate design ideas and mood boards you publish on Italian Bark are a story for themselves. Color boards stand out as most simple and yet most effective and are always very popular across social media. Is there a secret design process behind your boards or do you just follow your intuition?

I’m just following my intuition. Also, I know where to find inspiration and sources for images for the blog!

Design interviews on SampleBoard - Italian Bark - Interview with Elisabetta Rizzato

Not only did you “renovate” your online home, but you recently restyled your real house too. You documented everything and shared with Italian Bark readers. Mood boards and floor layout you created explain your design choices beautifully! Was it more challenging to do (and share) a project like this in your personal space or would it be easier if it was done for a client?

Thank you! It was easier because if you renovate your home you can follow your own taste and you are free to share things online. In the past, I had clients who didn’t want their home to be shared on the blog!

Design interviews on SampleBoard - Italian Bark - Interview with Elisabetta Rizzato
Design interviews on SampleBoard - Italian Bark - Interview with Elisabetta Rizzato
Design interviews on SampleBoard - Italian Bark - Interview with Elisabetta Rizzato

What do you think is the most important part of the design process?

I think the most important part is the really first one when you ask and listen to client’s needs. Moodboards are part of the whole project life: as a way to put together ideas at the beginning, as a guideline to create a project, but can also be useful at the end when incorporating changes and new things.

What do you enjoy more – blogging or designing interiors for clients?

Half and half! Also, I get bored very easily so doing both is great for me :)

Design interviews on SampleBoard - Italian Bark - Interview with Elisabetta Rizzato

What is your biggest source of inspiration?

Travelling and visiting design fairs and events.

Which other designers and bloggers do you admire?

I follow many Scandinavian blogs, some UK ones, Australian and Americans mainly. But on my list, there are of course some Italian blogs and other from very different countries.

What would you say to yourself from four years ago if you had this knowledge? What would you do differently?

Good question!! Probably a lot, but also nothing. My blog is the result of passion, trials, mistakes, nothing was planned at the beginning, and I really did not know anything about blogging as a job. Turning back time, I would have studied SEO at the beginning, for example. However, maybe if I would have done things differently, the results would also not have been the same.

What would be your advice to fellow designers dreaming about a similar career to yours?

The quote I love: Dream big, work hard, stay focused and surround yourself with good people. :)

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