Posts Tagged: interior designers

Aug 15

Q&A: Bradley Stephens designs a Hamptons oasis

As long-time fans of Bradley Stephens of Stephens Design Group, we were thrilled that he recently chose to use several of our latest rugs for a new project in the Hamptons. Born in Texas and living in New York City, Bradley’s personal style is quintessentially all American. He has a keen appreciation for artisan finishes and high-end craftsmanship, and is not afraid to mix high and low. Because of a personal, collaborative approach to working with each client he is well versed in a variety of design aesthetics and time periods. Bradley’s talent, versatility, and energetic personality have lead to rave reviews and high profile clients.

The perfect summertime getaway with the style of a Manhattan townhouse, the Harbor’s Edge penthouse is an eclectic blend of refined and relaxed. Bradley gave us the scoop on his daily inspirations and how he translated his experience to this Hamptons getaway.

Where did you start when designing for Harbor’s Edge?

My process typically starts with an extensive dialogue with the client. Floor plans are put aside so they don’t instinctively start making assumptions about what’s possible. With open minds, we talk through their requirements and goals room-by-room, cataloging the client’s history, lifestyle and preferences along the way. The resulting trove of information forms the foundation of our design for the client, and allows us to tailor the project to their personality and aspirations. This level of engagement allows my clients to co-author the design, and inevitably leads to a successful, rewarding collaborative working experience.

At Harbor’s Edge, we decorated the Penthouse as if someone truly lived there, and curated the space with a mixture of furniture and accessories that could have been collected through years of travel.  We based the design on the standards set by many of our Manhattan-based clients.  The Hamptons homes that I design are a clear reflection of my clients’ personas. They are elegant, sophisticated and meticulously planned.  But I get to translate their taste for urban refinement into a beach-chic vocabulary.


Describe the type of client you could see falling in love with this space.

I’m guessing the sweeping water views and gorgeous sunsets at Harbor’s Edge have a broad demographic. But I also like to think that attention to details and an invitingly eclectic design approach to the Penthouse will have a strong universal appeal. It has the potential of being the perfect fit for a client that is looking for a home with urban sophistication, but nestled into the relaxed atmosphere of Sag Harbor.


Master bedroom, featuring a Coil tufted wool rug in Marshmallow.

Entry, featuring Avant sisal rugs woven with UltraFiber, in Straw.

Bedroom, featuring a Slater wool flatweave in Colonial Blue, from the Tailormade collection.

What kind of a role did our rugs play in your design process?

The crucial quality for a successful Hamptons home is a feeling of effortlessness. The best design deftly balances curated furnishings and blue-chip artwork with the easy comfort of flip-flops and ice cream. Merida is a natural fit because the refinement of their rugs adds an unmistakable foundation of quality and craftsmanship to my designs. I indulge my clients with rustic-luxe textiles paired with French-polished Deco furniture and sculptural modern lighting usually reserved for Park Avenue duplexes. I love pairing these elegant pieces with easy-going counterpoints like natural fiber rugs, sumptuous tufted wool, and tailored flat weaves. Timelessness is a cornerstone of my design approach, and Merida’s exquisite collections deftly transcend eras, styles, and locales.


featuring a Pinstripe tufted wool rug in Ice Fog.

Was there a particular vignette that you felt was especially effective?

The material palette of the living room fireplace and custom built-in cabinetry is one of my favorite moments in the Penthouse. The bookshelves and paneling create a backdrop of cerused European oak and recessed panels of natural willow-screen, framing a sleek, modern fireplace bordered by a slab of marble. The shelves are curated from my accessories collection, Evermore Shop, to echo the color and texture of jewel-toned sunsets, blossoming flowers, and shimmering water. All of this was inspired by the unique location and mesmerizing views over the harbor.


What is your first creative design memory?

My childhood was spent creating. I was obsessed with building structures and interiors to the last detail with whatever I could find in the house or garage. If I imagined a five-star restaurant, every pot and dish had to be in place – care of my Mother’s kitchen. My poor parents! I have always been fanatical about planning and executing what I set my mind to. I’m lucky to have a career devoted to dreaming and building on an epic scale.


Who or what is inspiring you right now?

I’m fortunate to have an international clientele, and relish the opportunity to shop European auction houses and flea markets. I am inspired by romantic, historic cities that buzz with modernity. There is nothing I love more than exploring the endless design resources of Paris and London, and discovering unique furniture, artwork and accessories for my new online home furnishings collection,


What is one thing you can’t live without?

While I love the excitement of New York City and the allure of the Hamptons, I simply cannot live without weekend escapes with my partner and our English Bulldog to Rockwater, our country home in rural Litchfield County, CT.

Photos: Stephens Design Group and @Bradley__Stephens on Instagram

Shop Tailormade flat-woven wool rugs

Shop Avant sisal woven with UltraFiber

Shop tufted wool rugs

Jun 15

3 Featured Spring Retreats

As we say goodbye to spring and officially embrace the summer season, we want to share a few of our favorite spring projects published in top shelter magazines over the past few months. Designers Beth Webb, Megan Winters, and Susan Bohlert Smith created stunning interiors that make elegant use of light and build excitement for the changing seasons. Presenting three inspiring spring retreats with sun and soul, from Chicago to Costa Rica.

Veranda May 2015 – ‘Light Touch’
Designer: Beth Webb

Beth Webb designed an airy, calming retreat in a Costa Rican paradise. The perfect lead-in to summer, this home is both dramatic and at-ease—a mix of awe-inspiring grandeur and casual elegance. With the goal of keeping the mood both relaxed and fresh, Webb used a neutral palette with regional influences and pops of color.

(click to enlarge) A gorgeous living room with tropical sun and breezes. With a Bora Bora jute rug. Veranda / Laura Resen

Rug featured: Boardwalk Braid Sunrise jute.


Elle Decor May 2015 – ‘Going for the Gold’
Designer: Megan Winters

Megan Winters’ own Lake Forest home was featured in last month’s Elle Decor. High contrast black and whites serves as a base for her to add accents of gold and pink. While pink is her favorite color, she challenged herself to all but leave it out of this first floor. Winters’ architectural interior design style of straight lines and sharp contrasts provides a counterpoint to the organic natural elements of the outdoors.

Megan winters living room with Merida Mayon Abaca rug

The living room, with a Mayon abaca rug. Elle Decor / William Abranowicz

Megan Winters living room with a Merida Mayon abaca rug

A second view of the living room. Elle Decor / William Abranowicz

Megan Winters dining room with merida mayon abaca rug

The dining room, with another Mayon abaca rug. Elle Decor / William Abranowicz

A niece's bedroom, with Grand Tournai wool & sisal. Elle Decor / William Abranowicz

Rugs featured: Mayon abacaGrand Tournai wool & sisal.


Traditional Home June 2015 – ‘Legal Ease’
Designer: Susan Bohlert Smith – Bohlert Massey Interiors

On Florida’s beautiful Golf Coast, Susan Bohlert Smith set out to create spaces that allow attention to shift to the spectacular ocean and dunes of the natural environment. She chose earthy neutrals for a softer interior that compliments the views while maintaining textural and stylistic interest. Bohlert Smith mixed casual and formal elements to create a space that is both relaxing and grand.

The living room, with a Bora Bora jute rug. Traditional Home / Colleen Duffley

The sitting room, with a Broadway Glacier sisal rug. Traditional Home / Colleen Duffley

The bedroom, with a Madagascar sisal rug. Traditional Home / Colleen Duffley

Rugs featured: Bora Bora Sunrise juteBoardwalk Glacier sisalMadagascar Glacier sisal.


Mar 15

CLOTH & KIND creates a serene speakeasy with a new Shriva jute rug

With a little inspired collaboration the “bonus room” in the 2014 Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles Home for the Holidays Showhouse became a can’t-miss, soulful retreat. The lovely and talented duo of CLOTH & KIND, Krista Nye Schwartz and Tami Ramsay transformed the bonus room and vestibule into a stunning speakeasy using our new Shriva jute rug. We caught up with Kirsta and Tami to find out more about their partnership and the philosophy behind their Showhouse room.

What energizes you?

Creating homes for our clients which embody our personal design belief that each space should be brimming with history and heart, with story and substance.

Where did you grow up and how do you think that has influenced your style?

Krista // I grew up in Chicago, but spent a most transformative year of my life living in India with my family as a young child. It’s clear to me that a seed was planted deep inside of me that year and it’s been glorious to watch its deep-rooted influence on my sense of interior style blossom and evolve over the years. I tend to have a bend towards a global aesthetic, but made more sophisticated and current with modern and luxurious touches.

Tami //  I grew up in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina in a sprawling beach house nestled in the sand dunes. This early experience with the natural world has greatly influenced my design aesthetic. I am forever inspired by the layers of textures, hues, and relics of the world around me.

Who or what is inspiring you right now?

We’re totally obsessed at the moment with reinterpreting and modernizing traditional styles of window treatments (think Victorian) by using neoteric textiles & trimmings, Southern California fashion & jewelry designer Kendall Conrad, Melissa Sutton of Plum Collective & brutalist chandeliers.

Where is your favorite place to travel for leisure?

Anywhere that is steeped in history and chock-full with treasure troves of interesting architecture & textiles. Preferably somewhere international… and warm!

What is your favorite quote?

Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony. – Mahatma Gandhi

Where did you start when designing this room?

Given the tucked away location of the vestibule and bonus room, we were inspired to turn the adjoining spaces into an alluring destination in the home – a seductive and modern day speakeasy. A cheeky nod to the blind tiger, as speakeasies were often referred to during the prohibition era, we swathed the walls of the vestibule in ZAK+FOX’s luxurious Khaden tiger print fabric. Dark and sultry trim, ceilings and walls in Sydney Harbour Paint’s Jaguar sets the mood and creates the ideal backdrop upon which a myriad of geometric shapes are echoed throughout the bonus room in watery shades of cream, blue & indigo, plum, blush pink and neutral.

How would you characterize the room?

The ultimate destination. A space that beckons with promises of lounging and frivolity.

How does Shriva work with your aesthetic?

The interlocking jute braids of Merida’s new Shriva rug created the perfect textured, yet neutral foundation for our modern day speakeasy. We layered vintage rugs and several comfortable seating arrangements atop this gorgeous natural fiber floor covering, and Shriva simultaneously added visual interest and complimented the array of textiles and hues we used in the space.

Oh, and we just have to add that one of the primary reasons we adore Merida’s rugs are that their weaving partners are certified by GoodWeave and provide much needed employment to nearly 4000 Indian women. Now THAT works well with any aesthetic.

Warmest wishes of sincere thanks to Merida for partnering with us and embracing our vision for the 2014 Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles Home for the Holidays showhouse.

Krista & Tami

Order Shriva samples >

See more on CLOTH & KIND’s journal >

photos: Sarah Dorio

Feb 15

Katie Leede in the Hampton Designer Showhouse 2014

Nothing is more important for a living space than to be peaceful and energizing for its occupants. Katie Leede brings this spirit to all of her interiors, with a keen eye for reflecting the personality of the client and a globally-inspired and distinctive style. The 2014 Hampton Designer Showhouse was an exciting opportunity for Katie to use her own experiences to shape the design of an airy, idyllic bedroom. We caught up with Katie to find out what makes her tick and to get the scoop on her incredible Showhouse design.

What energizes and inspires you?

I am energized by the light during different hours of the day and the magnificent diversity and creative genius on display in nature. I love traveling to places I have never been before–we are heading to Rajasthan in March!

Rajasthan. Photo by Joe Fox

New York is always inspiring, whether looking at art in Chelsea or getting lost in a button shop on the Upper East Side. There is so much to observe and take in: color, the theater, great performances, walking the streets of Soho, the MET.

I love the idea that we are always changing and shifting, as in the saying,  “You can’t step into the same river twice.”

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC. Wikipedia / cc

Where did you start when designing your room in the Hampton Designer Showhouse?

photo by Phillip Ennis

I knew we were going to be moving out of our old apartment and there wasn’t going to be room for my daughter’s big Jacobean bed so I thought the showhouse would be a good way-station. This gorgeous, hunk of a bed is full of stories, having been my own teenage bed. The question then became how to make it look chic, fun and appropriate for a breezy Hamptons setting.

How would you characterize the room?

photo by Phillip Ennis

I pretended the house was ours and this room belonged to my well-traveled, brainy, artistic daughter Lucia. Attention is paid to creature comforts–good books, plenty of light to read by, soothing colors and inspiring artwork to delight the senses, and a hang out zone for her and her friends on lazy summer afternoons. The room is a success because of the natural color palette of blues and greens with hot flashes of pink throughout, the warm texture of the jute rug and the fresh mix of heavy and light elements (dark bed/ white sheets) and the new and old (tufted leather couch/furry modernist stools). It’s all topped off with fabulous artwork that elevates the space to the truly magical. Art has a way of doing that.

Why did you choose Bora Bora for this space?

photo by Phillip Ennis

I am addicted to the Bora Bora rug because of its bold, stand-alone texture: it’s hunky and strong yet silky and smooth to the touch–cushy even. I am particularly drawn to the Volcano colorway because it casts a silvery hush over a room. The Merida Smooth Linen borders come in the most glorious colors. I like to go 3″ wide on the borders to add more drama. After the showcase closed, I moved the rug to my own new living room and layered it with a vintage Moroccan carpet and every day is a happy day.

Do you have a favorite vignette in the room?

photo by Phillip Ennis

My favorite spot is the corner sofa area mostly because I was so pleased by how well the Kim McCarty artwork sang there. The moody nude seems to capture the existential angst girls feel–or I certainly felt–during those high school and college years when all is before them and they don’t yet feel comfortable with the mystery of how life is going to play out for them. Her feet are too big for her body, she has yet to grow into herself and yet her vulnerability makes her all the more compelling and beautiful. I imagined a safe setting for her, which made me happy to see come together.

View Bora Bora >

Showhouse photography by Phillip Ennis