How to Upgrade Your Living Space, According to Design Expert Ito Kish

Ditch the dog-eared posters and moldy mattresses.
IMAGE Robinsons Department Store

Men, especially those who live independently, should put more thought into curating their living spaces. And by that, we mean ditching the dog-eared posters and moldy mattresses of your college dorm days, and designing your space like a grown-up. After all, what you put in your home says a lot about you.

This is the same philosophy renowned designer Ito Kish swears by in his collection with Robinsons Department Store. The designer has put together two classic and functional lines—Icelandic, a Scandinavian-themed collection that follows the Nordic tradition of hygge, and Cool Life, a collection that features Asian-inspired aesthetics, particularly water and shades of blue—that will fit very well into any home. 



When it comes to designing personal spaces, he values three things: comfort, practicality, and personality. “In designing Cool Life, what reflected my design philosophy the most was the understated feel of the collection and that the items can all be mixed, as well,” he says.

Here, more tips from the design expert on giving your living space that much-needed upgrade. 

1| Inspect the pieces

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A well-designed space should do wonders to your mood and well-being. It is possible to strike a balance between cozy and exquisite when it comes to purchasing furniture. According to Ito, you should take note of the materials used to build a piece and how it was made. “Material is important because it gives a sense of feel. Construction will be another thing that’s important. They go hand in hand.” 


2| Remember to organize

The designer observes that organization is a quality men tend to overlook the most in their living spaces. Clutter takes away from the beauty of the space; you want to show off your personality through your things, not through the visible mess. Look into shelves, containers, and other interesting storage ideas to keep things tidy. 


3| Mind the bed


Ito's favorite pieces are the the bed and bath pieces from Cool Life. “A lot of us take for granted how important it is for us to style our beds,” he says. “Considering we spend more than half of the day in bed, we need to feel good with the beddings we use.” 


4| Be on the lookout for quality

Stay away from cheap, gimmicky trinkets and keep your eyes peeled for quality items. This means going for pieces that are well-made, and those that serve practical purposes. From the collection, take note of a shower curtain that comes with a PVC liner, which keep it free of molds and grime, and 12 hooks for easy use.  


5| Add personal touches


The quickest way to inject your personality into your space, says Ito, is by adding things that you like. The designer recommends pieces “that have sentimental value to you. Add a dash of your favorite color, toys you love, the books you like, and other things that can make the space throughly a reflection of who you are.”  

Robinsons Department Stores

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Sam Beltran
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