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Home » News » FSU Interior Design Graduate Melanie Murata Launches Karu

FSU Interior Design Graduate Melanie Murata Launches Karu

Published May 30, 2019


Melanie Murata Headshot

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Melanie Murata‘s passion for design started at a young age. She graduated from Florida State University in 2014 with a Masters in Interior Design. While at FSU, Murata was a very involved student. She participated in the Architecture Study Abroad Program in Florence, Italy, was Interior Design Student Organization President, ASID Student Chapter President, and played lacrosse. She was also the recipient of many interior design program awards, including the NEWH-Fr One International Scholarship recipient while studying for her Masters.

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Upon completion of her degree, she moved to Southern California to launch her career by accepting a position with Gensler, a world-renowned architecture and planning firm, as a Project Designer. In this time, Murata has built an impressive portfolio of fortune 500 companies and independent brands. Her clients have included Doubletree Hotels by Hilton, San Diego; Too Faced Cosmetics, Irvine, CA; SFO Airport Restaurant Concepts, San Francisco, CA; and Sheraton Hotels, Los Angeles, CA.


In her newest venture, Karu, Melanie strives to encapsulate her design experiences so her vision and work process fully serves her clients. Melanie says,

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Karu creates spaces for people who live, work and travel so richly that their environments serve as a beautiful backdrop to complement their lives. We believe in intentional living and understand our spaces deeply influence us — we only source materials and carefully curate pieces from sustainable and ethical brands.

This multidisciplinary interior architecture firm strives to be a visual-thought leader for its forward-thinking clients. Karu is here to help you fill the needs you didn’t know you had by being detail oriented.

We strive to position retail, hospitality, boutique workplace and branded environments as innovative spaces of the future. Our design process is intimate, nuanced and follows a unique methodology inspired by our clients and the context of each project.

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The Karu Vision

The clarity to discern what objects, ideas, and values best serve us, and the boldness to rid ourselves of what doesn’t. Less striving for perfection, more acceptance of who we are right now. This thought: the greatest components of life are not the things we own, only the depth of the experiences and memories we create.

Inspired By Heritage


The concept for the Karu brand is inspired by rich cultural experiences and celebrates heritage. Melanie spent a part of her childhood in Huancayo, a small village in the Peruvian Andes. Karu is inspired by Melanie’s cultural heritage and Incan ancestry. Karu means far away in Quechua, the native language of the Incas.

The brand is a continual journey of understanding the depth of humankind by traveling to faraway lands.

To learn more about:


Melanie Murata

Melanie Murata’s collection of work

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Working with Karu