This website uses cookies to improve your experience navigating our site. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

OK, I understand

Avoiding Archi-Speak With CM Studio

Studio Visit

Creating warm, simple spaces is at the heart of Sydney-based cm studio’s approach. In under six years, this young architecture and design firm has already gained a rep for understated reinvention.

Today we chat to close friends Chris Glanville and Megan Burns at their Rushcutters Bay studio – refreshingly, sans archi-speak!

12th February, 2018

Close friends and creative partners Megan Burns and Chris Glanville of architecture and design firm cm studio. Photo – Jacqui Turk for The Design Files.

Bright and airy Cranbrook project kitchen. Photo – courtesy of cm studio.

The exterior of the Oatley project, by cm studio. Photo – courtesy of cm studio.

The bathroom of their Cranbrook project. Photo – courtesy of cm studio.

And the Cranbrook project bedroom. Photo – courtesy of cm studio.

‘By the end of the design stage with all our jobs there needs to be this moment of, “I want to move into this place,”‘ says Megan. Photo – Jacqui Turk for The Design Files.

Interiors of cm studio’s Hargrave project. Photo – courtesy of cm studio.

Freya Latona
Monday 12th February 2018

‘By the end of the design stage, there needs to be this moment of, “I want to move into this place!”‘ – Megan Burns.

Chris Glanville and Megan Burns met as undergrads at Sydney University while studying architecture. Working together in small groups, they knew straight away that they had a similar approach to design, and a laidback attitude which respected, yet didn’t pedestal, their craft.

The pair both worked briefly for other architecture and design firms, before starting their own in 2012. Megan had been offered her first project (the Manly penthouse apartment of her boyfriend’s parents) and immediately brought Chris on to help, and cm studio was born!

In 2014, they won the Interior Design Excellence Award (IDEA) in the emerging designer category, having only the one project to their name. The duo didn’t even buy tickets to the event until the last minute, when they got a call from an organiser, gently suggesting they might want to be there. ‘We weren’t making money at that early stage, and were thinking, two hundred bucks for a ticket? Bugger that!’ laughs Chris.

Since then, cm studio has gained a strong following through social media and word-of-mouth. They have also attracted clients by hosting open home events that allow the public to experience their spaces in the flesh, a visual and tactile experience that doesn’t always translate in photos.

Chris and Megan aim to create ‘simple, minimalist spaces’, prioritising their natural instincts when it comes to reinventing a space. The result is a design approach which responds respectfully to the existing context of a home’s heritage and location; marrying a sense of ‘softness’ with the linearity of the modern. ‘By the end of the design stage with all our jobs there needs to be this moment of, ‘I want to move into this place,’ says Megan. ‘If we’re not convinced, then the client isn’t going to be,’ adds Chris.

Stay tuned for cm studio’s second collaboration with Project 82, released later this year.

View Comments

Similar Stories

Dream Job

Dominique Brammah · Senior Designer, Arent&Pyke

The pragmatic interior designer talks train make-up-ing, Big Sky Dreaming, and falling off the 'textbook' path.
Elle Murrell

Interiors

A Nod To The Australian Aesthetic In South Korea

Melbourne's Flack Studio brings some serious colour to sensational Seoul eatery, Caravan Hapejong.

Creative People

Introducing Design Stables

A collective of eight Perth design studios come together with a common belief in the power of collaboration. 

This Week

Roundup

Just Announced – The 2019 Australian Interior Design Awards Shortlist

Our highlights reel of the lust-worthy residential interiors in the running for the prestigious Australian Interior Design Awards.

Tiny Homes

Get Off-Grid With CABN

Escape the world in these sleek, contemporary tiny cabins, situated in secret locations, each within 1.5 hours of a major city.

Photography

A Solo Pilot's Breathtaking Photographic Project

Andrew Vukosav's current exhibition, 'Longitude, Latitude, Solitude', has taken the accomplished commercial photographer and his Cessna 182R...
Elle Murrell

News

Another Blockbuster Year For The Auckland Art Fair

The major annual event is back for another year, showcasing leading local and international contemporary art!

News

Tired Of Intellectualising Everything? This Photographer Is

Kate Ballis’ new series ‘Spectrums of The Galapagos’ challenges us to connect and feel, rather than dissect.
Elle Murrell
  2 hours ago

News

TarraWarra Museum Of Art Opens Its Doors This Weekend

Enjoy free access to this celebrated Victorian museum and creative events at the TWMA Open Weekend!
Sally Tabart
  22 hours ago

Small Business

How To Get That Side Project Started

Groupon, Unsplash, WeWork, Craigslist and even Twitter were created initially as side hustles – maybe it's time to get your idea off t...
Fiona Killackey

Architecture

The Long And Lean Sub-Tropical Dream!

Painted white brick and intriguing forms create a real eye-catcher, in this Shaun Lockyer designed home in Chandler, Queensland.
Miriam McGarry

Art

A Celebrated Abstract Artist Shares Her ‘Rhythm Sequence’

Gemma Smith takes us inside a new exhibition, charting her experiments on canvas over the past 17 years.
Elle Murrell

Interiors

2019 Dulux Colour Award Finalists Revealed!

Celebrating colour through this year's most eye-catching architectural and interior design projects.
Sally Tabart
  21 hours ago

Travel

7 Incredible Tiny Eco Getaways

Swap WiFi for star-gazing, in these dreamy eco retreats.

Architecture

A Playful And Reorienting Renovation

Austin Maynard Architects joyfully reconfigure the Grant House in Fitzroy, Melbourne.
Lucy Feagins
  24 hours ago

Studio Visit

The Reinvention Of A Beloved Brisbane Artist

A chance meeting with a potter abroad inspired Rose Jensen-Holm to turn to the wheel, with a new exhibition opening this Friday.
Jo Hoban
  8 hours ago

News

A History Of Melbourne, Told Through Train Tickets

Contemporary artist Peter Atkins reflects train ticket designs in Victoria to tell a forgotten history of Melbourne in The Passengers. 
45:53

Podcast

TDF Talks With Landscape Designer Paul Bangay

One of Australia’s most celebrated green thumbs reflect on his career, the mentors who have inspired him and his brand new book!

Similar Stories

Dream Job

Dominique Brammah · Senior Designer, Arent&Pyke

The pragmatic interior designer talks train make-up-ing, Big Sky Dreaming, and falling off the 'textbook' path.
Elle Murrell

Interiors

A Nod To The Australian Aesthetic In South Korea

Melbourne's Flack Studio brings some serious colour to sensational Seoul eatery, Caravan Hapejong.

Creative People

Introducing Design Stables

A collective of eight Perth design studios come together with a common belief in the power of collaboration.