Rina Cohen has been in the interior design fraternity since 1987 and has been a certified kitchen designer for 15 years.
Australia’s premier specialist Kitchen and Bathroom Designers’ Institute of Australia (KBDi) recently awarded Cohen the KBDi Certified Designer of the Year 2023.
“It is the equivalent of winning the Gold Logie,” Cohen said. “I have had my eye on this prize for 15 years.”
The application process is rigorous. The designer needs to deliver a high-quality detailed brief that documents how to overcome the challenges involved in the plan.
It’s supported with documentation and drawings that cover elevation sections, colour schemes, how the project is presented to the client, colour boards with the materials to be used and photographs.
Cohen said, “You’re judged on not only how it all looked, but how good your documentation was in terms of supporting your design and how you went about convincing your client that this is the right design, and you know how it will look.”
She entered her design into the Best Kitchens Plus (large kitchens with a butler’s pantry) state awards category, where it took out first prize for Victoria. From there it was submitted for consideration as the KBDi Certified Designer of the Year 2023.
“I don’t know how many people applied but I was up against a short list of four designers.”
The judges describe her winning entry as “a perfect example of the high standard expected of a KBDi-accredited designer. The designer demonstrated meticulous attention to detail from the brief to the specifications, and the stunning material selections were the icing on the cake … the panel commended the entrant on a perfectly executed project.”
Her winning design was part of a newly built house in Caulfield North. When asked if the owner knew they were buying a house with an award-winning kitchen Cohen replied, “They know now.”