Back when the architects working on Tiffany Riggle’s own house asked her to show the project to other clients, it took her by surprise. Up until then, she deemed her deft hand with interiors an occupational hazard, a language acquired through years as a retail buyer who just cultivated a personal passion. To trained eyes, though, her work asserted “professional caliber.” With encouragement from her husband, comedian Rob Riggle, Tiffany started to sign clients of her own, and a career was launched.
Missed last night’s FYI premiere? Catch Tiffany’s episode again on Saturday, May 25, at 9:00AM on A&E.
Today, as a practicing designer, learning spaces and translating their possibilities are Tiffany’s expertise. In this episode of Working The Room, she turned a would-be, slapdash man cave into a multipurpose space with a Moroccan influence that mirrors fellow Tiffany and Chase’s existing flow—and evolves it, with selections from Sotheby’s Home.
“My biggest design secret is knowing a client’s aesthetic and designing most of the home in that style…then incorporating a different style in 15-20% of the design. For example, using contemporary light fixtures in a traditional design updates the space while adding a dynamic that keeps it from looking stagnant.”
For homeowner Tiffany, part of the struggle was prying the erstwhile garage from her husband, Chase, who’d christened it “The Chase Lounge”—placard and all. Neither he nor his 9-foot pool table would be easily evicted, no matter how much Rob, the project’s designated “assistant,” lobbied for them. Thanks to designer Tiffany’s eye for marrying form and function, a combination pool/dining table delivered the play factor.
“When I was just starting out and living in New York City, my first apartment was a 350-square-foot studio. I earned a Ph.D. in creative, hidden storage. Rooms designed without storage incorporated into them is the most common mistake I encounter.”
“Many ‘unsightlies’ are part of living…chargers, TV components, paperback books, etc. A closed cabinet instead of open shelving, a storage ottoman in lieu of a coffee table, or replacing an open console with a sideboard will go a long way to preserve the integrity of a beautiful room.”
To integrate the couple’s North African-inspired aesthetic, designer Tiffany opted for strategic decorative touches as a nod to their interiors.
“Sotheby’s Home is a terrific source for one-of-a-kind items,” Tiffany shared, “and placing each carefully selected item in a newly designed room is always my favorite part.”
The pièce de résistance, however, was replacing the rolling garage door with a moving wall of insulated glass. “Oh my god, I see a bright, happy room!” were the first words homeowner Tiffany spoke upon the big reveal. What was once a gloomy, cramped outbuilding was transformed into an expanse of both light and square footage, opening up the furniture options to outfit and bring it further to life.
“The time frame in which we were able to complete everything was quite surprising,” designer Tiffany remarked. The key to turning it around efficiently? An emphasis on due diligence. “Having a full grasp of a client’s intent is paramount. I start working on the floor plan right away, especially in a room they’re asking to be multifunctional.”
To fulfill Chase’s desire for a tangible lounge feel, Tiffany opted for seating “with good bones and solid wood frames. Sturdy and won’t wobble when pushed.”
“This is much nicer than what I had,” admitted Chase. “Brilliant.”
Finally, a touch of the outdoors for the new outdoor abode. “Bringing in nature adds texture, life, and a bit of essential asymmetry. Incorporating organic items such as agate slices, geodes, live-edge and root furniture, plants, etc., grounds any design and gives it warmth.”
The result? A clean, invigorated space that melds Chase’s wish for an area to relax with his wife Tiffany’s dream of an updated, secondary room.
About the show: Working The Room is an innovative new home makeover series, that follows highly regarded interior designers, as they come to the rescue of overwhelmed clients to make over a room in desperate need of transformation. Featuring the unique talents of Nathan Turner, Mat Sanders, and Tiffany Riggle, Working The Room brings to life each designer’s creative process, including how they choose items to help anchor each reimagined space from Sotheby’s Home
Stay up to date on all things Working The Room by following along on FYI and A&E, and by checking out exclusive behind-the-scenes coverage on Sotheby’s Home’s YouTube, Instagram, and Working The Room online hub.