The Total-Solution Interior Design Studio to Know

AOD’s industry-ready interior design programme creates all-rounder professionals for the businesses of interior architecture and property development; Feature on design-to-build studio Chameleon Eyi, led by AOD interior design Grad Ruwean Gunaratne


Since his graduation few years back, young interior designer Ruwean Gunaratne has been steadily making his way in the industry, carving out a special niche for his work. His studio, Chameleon Eyi, named aptly for its flexible, transformational nature in providing a multitude of services, has now gained a name in the trade as one of the very best young studios that specialise in handling the process from design-to-build. This reputation paired with the studio’s signature quality of operating out-of-the-box with its designer lead, has firmly established Chameleon Eyi in its own footing. Ruwean hails from the celebrated interior design education of AOD, which is powered by Northumbria University UK. It was with this education as a solid foundation, and a keen sense of entrepreneurship inherited from his family and further encouraged by AOD, that Ruwean founded Chameleon Eyi Studio.

Ruwean’s speciality comes in with his ability to handle the entire process in creating a built environment. Constructing, or even renovating a space, is a multidimensional process that involves several professional services, meticulous project management and an in-depth knowledge on interior design and associated practices. A qualified designer with a multi-talented team can easily streamline this complicated process, shortening it by several weeks to save valuable time and money for the client. From conceptualization, space planning to structural design to the final construction and finishing, Chameleon Eyi Studio is equipped to undertake the complete process of creating a unique space whether it is residential, corporate, hospitality or retail. Chameleon Eyi Studio occupies this niche position in the interior design business, focusing mainly on small and medium projects.

Ruwean along with his co-designer and AOD Alumni Rumaiza Refai recently completed the Interior Design of a seafood retail store owned by Mr. Chaminda Wijeratne. Speaking of his experience on this latest project he stated that “Interior Design is a way of manipulating space, light and material in order to create the most suitable and aesthetically pleasing effect. The seafood retail store was one of the most unique projects I have worked on as most would think making Design a major part of such a store would be irrelevant. However, the way it was designed made a huge positive impact to the whole process and the outlook of the store making it a novelty in Sri Lanka. We were inspired by the colour tones of fish skin and also focused on the store’s space utilities. The use of wood and special lighting made the space clean, practical and modern.”

For Ruwean, becoming a qualified interior designer with his own studio to further his family business is a childhood dream come true. Ruwean’s dream to form his own company specializing in a more sophisticated design aesthetic and a specialised take on the creative process came true with the launch of Chameleon Eyi in 2014, after he graduated from AOD.

The interior design programme at AOD has been devised to train students to become much more than just designers who are employable by the business world. Instilling confidence in their own skills and leadership traits, while also promoting a strong sense of entrepreneurship, AOD prepares its students to take on leading roles as design entrepreneurs, studio heads, chief creatives etc. These young designers also receive their preliminary hands-on training while still at AOD, through live industry collaboration projects and internships where they gain experience working as professionals, even before they graduate. AOD’s comprehensive interior design curriculum taught in partnership with Northumbria University UK, is an all-encompassing study of space and its construction, taking into consideration function, style, material choices, furnishings, colour, lighting, building systems, health and safety etc. Bringing in knowledge from all over the world, the programme is taught by a multi cultural faculty from Europe, US and Sri Lanka. Meanwhile, through study tours around the country and international educational visits to global architectural hubs like Singapore and Hong Kong plus major design capitals like New York, students are allowed to expand their worldview and derive rich experiences that mould them into truly world-class designers.