Architect, entrepreneur, Komal Rustagi was inspired to pursue architecture from an early age

Komal Rustagi professional architect

Indians are now becoming more aware about designs thereby giving architects the scope to be creative,” says Komal Rustagi, AIT-SAP alumna 

By Arijit Roy: Komal Rustagi is a professional architect. With over 10 years of experience in the field of Architecture and Interior Design, Komal is successfully managing her two architecture firms, Madhuri Design Studio and Storey Tellers Design Studios, at present. 

The architect completed her Bachelor of Architecture from Apeejay Institute of technology-School of Architecture and Planning (AIT-SAP) in 2008.

After which, she went on to pursue her post-graduation in Interior and Living Design from Domus Academy in Milan.

The AIT-SAP alumna has also worked with Andy Martin Architecture, an award winning London-based, full service Architectural and Design practice firm and finally, returned to India to apply the knowledge acquired with a touch of her creative vision over here. 

In an exclusive interview, Komal reveals what all goes behind planning an interior design project, the differences she observed between Indian and European architecture and how AIT-SAP shaped her as a budding architect with on-site projects. Edited excerpts:

What does a day at the office look like?

We do a lot of work in terms of design, ideating, coming up with new concepts, space planning – basically anything relating to interior architecture.

We are constantly focused on getting to know new material in our domain, speaking to a lot of vendors, coordinating with contractors and finally, handling the client meetings.

A day at the office is a hotspot of a lot of discussions. And lastly, the most important task is checking the quality and construction details of what we have designed. 

How did you know that architecture was your calling?

I was always fascinated by construction and design details. Very early in my life, I think when I was in class 8, it became very clear to me that I would take science and pursue architecture. So, that solved the case! 

What are your best memories from the AITSAP campus?

We did a lot of workshops where we made structures from actual brick and mortar. It was a great experience. Then we also created models of existing structures. Creating something is always a very exciting process.

At AIT-SAP, we got a lot of exposure. It stimulated our minds and helped foster creative thinking as well as gave us insights about the practical aspect of architecture. It prepared me for what was to come in the actual architecture industry. 

What difference did you note between the Indian architecture landscape and that in Europe?

In Europe, they are very particular about a lot of things. They give every aspect a lot of attention and are very organised, extremely professional.

They have all the latest softwares and structures in the technology side of things. There is a total professionalism of how one works in the office, it’s inbuilt in me now, and I practice the same with my staff here.

Two changes you would suggest in Indian architecture?

Firstly, we need to educate our clients a lot more in terms of what architecture is actually about. It is a highly unorganised market.

Everybody has made a house at some point in their lives and they think they can do it by themselves. But there are things that have to be done properly and professionally.

Secondly, this aspect is gradually changing for the better – earlier creativity and design were not appreciated.

But now people have travelled a lot more, they can differentiate a good design from the bad one. This change needs more progression. It has started as a process, thankfully.

What are your future targets?

I want to do more projects and better projects, pan India ones. I want to gradually get into more genres of architecture.


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