30 Under 30: In celebration of design’s future leaders


For its eighth year, Mix’s 30 under 30 festivities arrived in Clerkenwell in September, celebrating our previously announced list of the industry’s greatest design leaders aged under 30. 

As headline sponsor Allermuir and Senator hosted the evening in style at its flagship showroom in London.

Awards were handed out to the year’s chosen recipients for their approach to creativity, commitment to innovation and relentless work ethic – all qualities that their nominating practices felt set them apart from the crowd. Featuring a blend of large and smaller studios, and specialists from across the industry, the future leaders were applauded one-by-one by their respective peers before segueing into a high-octane party, with the lights turned down and the music turned up. 

“Being a part of Mix 30 Under 30 is a really big achievement for me. It’s been a milestone in my career that I’ve wanted to achieve for a while, so to have finally made it is really exciting and I’m very happy.”

Ashton Holmes from Peldon Rose shares

Recognising not only the talent and achievements to date of an extraordinary group of people, the class of 2023 also represents immense potential – with previous recipients rising to extraordinary heights within the design industry.

When asked what the future of design looks like to them, the responses were diverse.

“I’m really excited about the evolution of biomimicry. We’ve seen biophilia come in, but now architecture is starting to develop into these beautiful [natural] designs and [it’s exciting to see] how we can evolve that into interior spaces.”

Holmes adds

Holmes is also enthusiastic about the role technology plays in the industry and how it could shape how designers work, favouring a future of blended realities and VR headsets. 

Looking at the coming years through a more emotive lense, tp bennett’s Nathalia Garcia believes in the increasing need for connectivity across projects, as studios and practices seek new ways to develop relationships with clients, to bring visions to life. “Being connected is my passion in design,” exclaims Garcia, who was partially nominated for her 'role model’ qualities, including her considered approach to support future generations, in particular with regards to sustainability. MoreySmith’s Will Nock continues the eco-conscious thread with pragmatic ideas that blend historical construction techniques with new methods:

“There’s been a lot recently about 3D printing and how we can use it to build using materials locally [sourced].”

Nock is also invested in using artificial intelligence as a tool in design, to collect data and form commercial environments that support multiple personality types and neurodiverse needs. 

“What’s really exciting at the moment is ‘resi-mercial’,”

says Wood Bagot’s Jenny Olver, referencing the crossover of hospitality and residential in the workplace.

Having worked on projects this year such as Convene – the 50,000 sq ft HQ at Bishopsgate in London – Olver describes how the growth of hospitality and residential mixes takes the ‘high end’ comfort of these experiences and translates it for a more traditional workplace setting. Already acknowledged to be beneficial for employees’ wellbeing and productivity levels, this ‘resi-mercial’ blend lends itself to the development of extraordinary future design concepts – continuing the shift in workplace design from uniform and monochrome to personalised and characterful.

Sharing her thoughts on being part of this year’s 30 Under 30 class Olver explains that “it feels really amazing to be in a group of [talented] young people. It's full of companies that have worked on amazing projects and I feel really lucky to be a part of it.

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