Trays Christmas 1
Behind the scenes /

Federico&Magdalena: “Only together we can make something really good”

Federico Violato works at D/DOCK for 7 years now. He’s a senior interior designer and besides his job, he recently started his own company together with his girlfriend. This company made from circular material the Christmas gifts for D/DOCK’s closest relations.

“I love to follow the project from A to Z, from concept to the final delivery. Especially the last part for me, is the most exciting: I love to be in the construction site and see my ideas coming to life. I think there is no better reward than see your thoughts coming alive and to see the people using what you created. It’s priceless. Along these 7 years, I’ve done projects on very different scales: from a 50 sqm bar to 600 rooms-hotels, all the time with the same enthusiasm and attention to the details, which is what interests me the most.”

Why did you two start your own company?
“My interest in details is what brought me to start my own company together with my partner in life: Magdalena. I’ve always felt a great potential and a great affinity with her and it was a bit for fun that we started to think about our own studio. Sometimes, in big projects you don’t have the time and the control to all the small details, and that’s what we were both missing a lot. That’s why we decided to create our own company, starting from product design and now slowly also approaching the interior design world.”

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What is the name MAI based on?
“The name Studio MAI comes from the Italian word mai that means “never”. It started as a joke, like you often say “never say never” or “we would like to do something for ourselves but we will NEVER do it anyway” etc. Then when we really started to shape the idea, we added meanings to the word MAI. Now the word MAI is full of meaning to us, like Never compromise (we are not a mass production studio and we will never be). We are craftsmen and we want to produce beautiful things trying to reduce our impact on nature. That’s why, for example, we only work with leftovers from other productions. Also, for us MAI means never give up. We personally had difficult times in our lives and we understood what is important in life, and we would like to bring this message also in the things we do. Everything we do we do it with our joined hearts, as one, because we believe that only like that we can make something good.”

What exactly is it that drives you working on Studio MAI?
“First of all, the possibility of doing something with the person I love. I think it’s something that not everybody has the luck to do it, but I’ve been lucky to meet her (at D/DOCK 🙂) and I couldn’t miss the chance. It also felt like a completely natural process. Also, Studio MAI, gives me the chance to experiment on different subjects, topics and situations that otherwise I will not have the chance to do. And seeing the result of something that you thought together with your partner is something priceless.”

Why is it a good combination with your D/DOCK work?
“I think for me it’s the perfect situation: it’s the perfect integration between two similar but very different disciplines. I have the feeling of being more and more complete everyday more thanks to this two realities I’ve been working on since beginning of the year.”

Nuvole Mirror 1
Mie Wood 3

For our closest relations, Studio MAI made the Christmas gift. What do you hope our D/DOCK relations will think of the gift?
“I remember I approached Coen (CEO D/DOCK) last September, presenting him Studio MAI and showing him the trays. My idea was just at first to show something I was doing outside of my work. I ended up that chat with proposing him to use Studio MAI for the xmas gift because I thought about showing the multidisciplinary soul of the D/DOCKers. I know it’s a topic for DB55 and I thought “there you go, here is a perfect example of multidisciplinarity in the studio. Of course we would also like to have a bit of visibility and we think D/DOCK is the right partner to achieve that, but mainly we thought that our example could be beneficial also for D/DOCK (to appear under a different light) and, hopefully, to push other people to take a stand and believe in what they want to do!”

Follow Studio MAI here:


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Interior 8 Copy
Mie Wood
Lato Cabinet 2