Is millennial pink still in? How to reconcile clients (couples) who have different design ideas? Should psychology be taught in design schools? Let the Valentine’s Day celebrations roll in with these four interior designers’ tips.

 

 

Ashley Darryl

“Millennial pink” in or out for 2019?
I have a feeling “millennial pink” is on its way out, but that’s not saying pink is out! I love working with various shades of pink in guest rooms and kids rooms, as they can really make a room feel soft and soothing.

Tell us about the first time you fell in love with a design find you currently own (or used in a project).
A piece that I’m in love with and will always love is my vintage sofa. It’s French 1940s with a single pillow seat in chocolate brown velvet and three back pillows. The sides are wood and the back flips down to turn it into a daybed. It’s a great multi-functional piece, especially for NYC living!

Empire Style Klismos Chairs Mid-20th Century

 

Is there such a thing as eternal design? For example, a style or type of furniture that lasts forever?
Yes, I believe there are. If something is classic, it can be timeless. For example, the Klismos chair, a design developed in Ancient Greece during the 5th century BCE, is still around today. Maybe their shape has been altered to fit a more modern space, but their overall look is always recognizable as a Klismos.

How do you manage clients (couples) who don’t see eye to eye when it comes to design choices?
We either help them find middle ground, or they take turns choosing each piece in their home!

 

Jessica Lagrange

Tell us about the first time you fell in love with a design find you currently own (or used in a project).
Of all the pieces I’ve ever bought for my own home, my favorite has been a Christian Astuguevieille table I saw at Holly Hunt, when she first started carrying his work. It was love at first sight. I had just started out in the design business, and it was a major purchase. So I had to save up for it. It was worth every cent. I still love it decades later, proof that great design is timeless.

Christian Astuguevieille table

 

Is there such a thing as eternal design? For example, a style or type of furniture that lasts forever?
Of course; look at my Astuguevieille table!  Well-designed, beautifully crafted pieces are timeless, regardless of period or provenance. Astuguevieille’s work is modern, but based on ancient forms that are also timeless. Or look at the Klismos chair, which has been made in different iterations and virtually every period since the Ancient Greeks made the very first ones. Every great design is reiterated time and time again in new materials and with references to its current period, whatever that may be.

How do you manage clients (couples) who don’t see eye to eye when it comes to design choices?
Psychology should be a required class in design schools. It’s a tremendous challenge and you have to be strategic, careful, and caring – but still keep the couple’s backgrounds, needs, and lifestyle in mind. Then you break down the issues in small steps and go for minor victories. For example, instead of worrying about the whole home at once, break it down into rooms, or even parts of a room, and negotiate one issue at a time.

 

Kim Radovich

What are the best types of lighting one can use to adjust mood in an interior? (Please pick one item from Sotheby’s Home.)
Dimmers are essential for overhead lighting, and will of course change the atmosphere in a space when lowered or lifted; but using ambient lighting cleverly is the trick to creating mood in a room. Ambient lighting is light that comes from all directions in a uniform, unfocused, indirect manner. The Bella Figura Beehive, with light reflecting onto the glass lamp base and above the shade in tandem with The Bella Figura Paradise Lamp, where the light lives within the lamp body itself, would certainly be a dramatic duo.

 

Bella Figura Lamps

 

What kind of design advice would you give to someone who has fallen out of love with his/her home décor, but doesn’t want to go through a total makeover?
Wall covering is always my go-to when I want an instant makeover. A textured grass cloth or a fabulous Chinoiserie and – voilà – instant makeover. Then it’s all about accessorizing…with pillows, throws, and art (and yes, that includes those ambient light fixtures). Simply rearranging existing furnishings can also really make a difference.

What are some turnkey types of accessories one can add to bring more romance to a room? (whether pink/red color décor or natural elements like flowers)
Candles!!!!! Flickering light and a beautiful scent can change the mood in a moment.

 

Juan Carretero

 Is “millennial pink” in or out for 2019?
The pink fever will continue, but I do certainly hope we are over the peak of the curve. Other shades of pink will be very much in vogue as the color permeates further into the mass market. From the more gender-neutral beige-blush to the ever-awesome Barragan pink to the peachy-salmon hybrids, pink is a symptom of our rosier Instagram-filtered lives.

Tell us about the first time you fell in love with a design find you currently own (or used in a project).
I have always liked using bust sculptures and antique portraits in juxtaposition with more modern pieces for my projects. Visiting the wonderfully fantastic world of Sir John Soane’s Museum in London while backpacking through Europe in my twenties might have had something to do with this. I remember thinking it was the most wonderful place I had ever been. The eccentricity, the passionate collecting, the beautifully displayed ornaments, and the plethora of antique architectural details definitely left a mark.

The Soane Museum in London

 

Is there such a thing as eternal design? For example, a style or type of furniture that lasts forever?
Absolutely. The very test of good design depends on whether it stands the test of time. Inevitably, every piece, will enjoy – or not – different degrees of popularity throughout its history. But, if it’s beautiful, well-made, and functional, it will always remain relevant. The material in which a piece is made plays a big role in determining its life span; natural materials tend to age better. Any of the pieces by Jean-Michel Frank or Xavier Lalanne, to name only a couple of  examples, have become so iconic and so important to our era that they’ve been promoted to the status of artwork. Absolutely nothing is more timeless than art.

How do you manage clients (couples) who don’t see eye to eye when it comes to design choices?
Ah! The million dollar question. And, the reason why sometimes I feel more like a therapist than a designer. Couples clashing over budgets, styles, schedules, finishes, and pretty much everything else, is far too common. Creating a home for two can be a minefield road when both parties have strong opinions and a love for personal items. A house is a personal reflection of who we are, and some couples have different personalities or different priorities. You first have to gage which battles you really want to fight. Then, you need to sit everyone down to discuss the real issue behind every argument. Quite likely, you will forced to read between the lines and second-guess, but you’ll always need to be tactful, diplomatic, and very respectful to everyone’s opinion. Oftentimes, it’s not about grandma’s clock, it’s about power. What is important is to listen, absorb, and then politely show your cards with convincing arguments without hurting anyone’s feelings and without taking anyone’s side. In the end, only one thing is for sure: everyone is going to have to compromise, including me.

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