This Architecture and Design Studio Serves Us Dreamy Designs with Every Project

At THE PLUS, we are intrigued by architecture and design, and the people behind the projects that catch our eye; we discovered Proctor and Shaw for this very reason. Proctor and Shaw is an award winning architecture and design studio, located in London. John Proctor and his business partner, Mike Shaw, specialise in residential work.

Proctor explained to us that Proctor and Shaw has no set style or aesthetic, rather, each project he and Mike work on is treated differently. However, they are often rooted in a modern aesthetic with a particular focus on lighting:

“We are naturally modernist designers and therefore clean lines, materiality and light are at the forefront of our thinking.”
- John Proctor

Pod-House

Pod-House

Pod House

Pod House

We spoke to John Proctor himself to learn a bit more about this award winning studio.

THE PLUS: First of all- Hi John! We’d love to get to know you and more about Proctor and Shaw! Can you tell us a bit about yourself and how Proctor and Shaw began? When did you develop an eye for design / architecture?
John Proctor:
Mike and I have been collaborating for over 15 years now, having met at a previous firm. I started a practice on my return from working abroad in 2014 and joined forces with Mike in 2017 after he had completed work on the Design Museum with John Pawson. We are an emerging practice with a growing reputation for high quality residential work.

TP: Where do you and Mike Shaw pull your inspiration from for Proctor and Shaw?
JP:
We have no set style or aesthetic and we treat each project on its own merits. Inspiration comes from our ambition to elevate each project beyond the expectations of our clients. We explore materiality, form and craft through conversation and exchange until a design with integrity, interest and authenticity emerges.

Hackney Extension

Hackney Extension

TP: The project, Tile House, is particularly impressive. Have you worked with 3D and 2D materials in other projects? Or was this more experimental?
JP:
Both Mike and I have a background in large scale cultural projects which take a huge amount of time and energy to implement. One of the joys of residential work is the opportunity to experiment, at a small scale, in collaboration with enlightened clients. Tile House was one such project where innovative ideas about 3D texture emerged.

TP: From the looks of it, Tile House and the Marylebone Apartment project seem to have similar colour palettes. Do you prefer to work with lighter colours when it comes to design?
JP:
Not necessarily… I would say we are more interested in contrast that enhances the architecture. Both of those projects have rooms (the snug space in Tile House and the shower rooms in the Marylebone apartment) that are treated with darker colours or materiality to create a ‘cocoon-like’ atmosphere.

Tile House

Tile House

Tile House

Tile House

Tile House

Tile House

TP: Natural light seems to be at the centre of most of Proctor and Shaw’s projects. Could you tell us more about lighting, and/or what elements you like to focus on when designing?
JP:
We are naturally modernist designers and therefore clean lines, materiality and light are at the forefront of our thinking. Natural light is of paramount importance and without doubt forms a central role in the design process. We consider: How is light let in? What material might it touch? How might texture and shadow be introduced? These types of questions are important to our practice.

TP: Of all the projects you’ve done, do you have a favourite?
JP:
Ha! Difficult question… I think the craftsmanship that was required to create the timber-battened wall at the Marylebone Apartment is at a level rarely seen in domestic work. Allied with sophisticated materiality, it is a very calming space that delivers both emotionally and functionally. The clients were also a joy to work with!

Marylebone Apartment

Marylebone Apartment

Marylebone Apartment

Marylebone Apartment

Marylebone Apartment

Marylebone Apartment

Marylebone Apartment

Marylebone Apartment

Marylebone Apartment

Marylebone Apartment

TP: Are there any upcoming projects that you’re working on? Or anything else you’d like to tell us about?
JP:
We have just finished a beautiful black linear brick extension to a large house in South London. We also have several projects on site; a pre-cast concrete panel elevation, flush lime pointed brickwork with a heavily brushed lime mortar surface, and shou-sugi-ban timber cladding, are all elements being explored on different projects due for completion soon.

Battersea House

Battersea House

Battersea House

Battersea House

Folded House

Folded House

Folded House

Folded House