Rue Magazine comprises one of our favorite go-to places for finding inspiration. The ideas are always perfectly styled and exquisitely photographed, while the tips are simply brilliant. So when founder and editor-in-chief Crystal Palecek agreed to talk design with us, we were thrilled. (Even more so considering that the publication also shares a city with our latest launch — San Francisco!) Read on to find out the backstory behind Rue, Crystal’s favorite San Francisco spots, the designers she’s watching, and everything in between.

Viyet: What inspired you to launch Rue?

Crystal: In a moment in time when I felt a need for the next big thing in my life, the idea for the magazine came to me – we launched in September 2010. It was as if a light turned on in me and there was no stopping from there! The team formed very naturally soon after and Rue Magazine began to quickly take shape. In general terms, the idea was the obvious marriage of two lifelong passions of mine: interior design and publishing. On a more specific level, the magazine world can be so sequestered, and we wanted to bring the all-inclusive mentality of design blogging to an online shelter publication.

Viyet: What’s your design philosophy?

Crystal: The thing I love about design is that it’s so personal. A space that sparks joy for me might not vibe for another person and vice versa. I’m inspired by people who have confidence in what they like and don’t like (even if it’s totally different from my own taste) and are unapologetic about their decorative choice. For a space to feel intentional and thoughtful, I always aim to find my point of view and stick to it.


Viyet: Are there any designers on your radar you’re particularly excited about?

Crystal: I really admire the work Brian Paquette is doing out of Seattle. Brian’s use of textiles and art is incredible. He has such a signature look – I look up to that consistency. I’ve also got Brittany Haines in San Francisco on my radar. She’s a second-generation interior designer and creates spaces that capture that paradoxical feel of California – casual and elegant all at once. Bailey McCarthy in Houston is also a mega talent to be reckoned with. Her spaces are an explosion of color and creativity. I’m so impressed with the business and brand she’s created. 

Viyet: Where are your favorite places in San Francisco to go for inspiration?

Crystal: The shops on Sacramento Street. A visit to Hudson Grace, March, Serena & Lily, St. Frank, and Anyon never fails to inspire me. I also just love taking long runs along the Golden Gate promenade. The colors of the bay, sand, and sky are an ever-changing color palette that gives me a visceral surge of inspiration.

Viyet: What trends do you see for 2016?

Crystal: To be honest, I don’t pay much attention to trends. Instead, I look for good design that speaks to the person meant to live in or use the space. What I’m personally into at the moment is woven furniture, black and white photography, masculine design details, and the Marie Kondo method of decluttering your space. It’s life-changing!

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Viyet: What Instagram accounts are inspiring you lately?

Crystal: Studio McGee’s feed has endlessly beautiful design inspiration. Browsing through the photos always leaves me excited about decorating and eager to get my hands on a design project. Bianca Sotelo also has a gorgeously curated feed. Her styling is impeccable and her eye for design is incredible. I’m also currently loving Tayler Golden’s Instagram. As a new mom, I love her musings on motherhood, which she pairs with beautiful images of her family and home. 

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Viyet: What are your top three favorite pieces on Viyet and why?

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Black Raindrops Painting, Mercer Chair, William IV English Mirror 

Crystal: I prefer my art to be abstract and subdued in color – this Natural Curiosities raindrop print on canvas is a beautiful statement piece that whispers instead of screams. I was instantly drawn to this contemporary chair for its modern silhouette and straightforward design. It’s a functional piece that works like a sculpture. Departing from my typical style, this carved eagle convex mirror is such a fun, stately piece! I’d place this in an entrance, at the end of a staircase, or with a gallery wall. 

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