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Student Spotlight

Marisa Soligo - Styling Essentials 101

Why did you choose the Coco Republic Design School to do an online Styling course?

When I considered embarking on an interior design course I was looking for a school that was aligned with a well-respected brand and also provided an accreditation from TAFE. For many years Coco Republic had been synonymous for design, style and sophistication, for me it just seemed like a no brainer.   

Why did you choose an online course instead of on campus? 

When I finally made up my mind to pursue some sort of study, a must have was flexibility of time to complete the course. At the time I commenced study, I was building my dream home, and had family responsibilities caring for terminally ill parents. Having an online course that provided 12 months to complete seemed ideal.

Were you well supported by your online tutor Tanya?

Tanya was wonderful. I found Tanya was accessible either via email or via a virtual conference call when needed. I never felt that I was alone in my learning. There was no question too silly or too many. Her feedback was invaluable and she always reassured me I was on the right track when I found myself over thinking things.

What did you get out of the Styling Essentials 101 course, what did you enjoy the most? 

While I was building my home, I penned a quote “It’s all about the detail!”  

Little did I know that there was a science behind arriving at that detail. For me the course provided clarity and the stepping-stones one requires in achieving the optimum outcome for a project. It’s not just a matter of picking things we like, but really drilling down into what your style is and translating that into a space to be enjoyed by many. I loved the design process and the importance of visualizing.

Would you recommend the Styling online course to others?

Absolutely!!!  Regardless if you are looking for a career in Interior Design or just want to learn the tricks of the trade, the skills you gain are invaluable.  

Tell us a little about you?

I would have to say my greatest passions are art and travelling. Travelling has allowed me to broaden my horizons; it has opened my eyes to different styles, tastes and ways of life. I have a love of beautiful things and finding ways to incorporate them into my surroundings.   

My love of art goes back to my childhood; it is not unusual for me to become lost within a painting. I still pick up a brush or pencil from time to time and have only just framed one of my own artworks for my home.

Tell us a bit about your background, how did you get into the design industry?

My background is predominately in administration with almost 20 years as an IT Procurement Manager in the banking in finance sector. After being made redundant I knew I wanted to do something different, return to my roots and explore avenues that allowed me to express my artistic side. In addition, as I was building a new home I was hoping to gain skills that would turn my home into something special and potentially building the stepping-stones to a new career and/or hobby

What do you currently do for work?

Currently work part time within the family business

What inspires/ excites you in the industry? 

I have always been drawn the creative elements, be it a painting, colour or harmony within objects. I have realized that design is only really limited by your imagination. I love how the industry is continually evolving.  

How would you describe your personal style?

I have always been drawn to traditional American architecture

My personal style would most certainly be a modern traditional style meets Hamptons. I love the elegance and warmth of a traditional style provides mixing it up with some modern elements and lots of light.

What are your latest projects?

My new home has been a work in progress with the build taking almost three and half years. I am currently focusing on styling living areas utilizing the skills I have newly found.

What’s next? 

I would like to continue my study in the interior design area. Given the opportunity would like to work with other professionals in the industry.

We are never too old to learn a new trade.

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