I have been doing residential interior design for about 15 years and I get asked the same question over and over “what is your style?” I have come up with many different answers for this question over the years. But, there really is no answer. It is like asking a person what kind of music they like. The answer is, “it depends.”
For home design, it depends on the client, the house, the location, the room and most importantly the inspiration. Inspiration is the thing that drives us every day to do things we love. Inspiration pushes us in the directions where we want to go. The thing about people who are creative in their lives are that they are inspired. Some people are more inspired than others. Great designers, artists, musicians often say their inspiration comes to them in some divine intervention. But, for most of us, we have to go out and find it. This is the critical component to creating an environment for yourself that is special and personal.
Ever since I was a little girl I would look around me and find things that were beautiful and try and use them in a new way. I still do it all the time. The color of an Oscar de la Renta dress, could become my new lipstick shade, the smell of the night blooming jasmine is my hand soap, a gate on a villa in Tuscany became the inspiration for a headboard I had made for a client.
There is a shop on Ventura Boulevard called Stacy Todd Home, which is adjacent to Stacey Todd, a beautiful clothing store. The home store is eclectic and stylish with a vibe that leans toward Cannes with a slight detour to Southhampton Long Island. The soaps, lotions, perfumes all smell so magnificent in the small space, you can literally smell the shop before you even enter it. The books and seashells are abundant and there is a little wink to Mick Jagger here and there with some peices that are undeniably “Rock and Roll.” Stacey is incredibly inspired. She finds a way to mix the old and new, the cool and the lovely. I can tell she is always looking around, picking up ideas to incorporate in her shop. I simply love going in, even if it’s just to poke around and see what has inspired her.
I encourage all my clients to never copy exactly someone else’s design. Look around, find things you love and then think of ways to bring those things home. Get inspired.
Stacey Todd Home 13025 Ventura Blvd., Studio City, CA 91604 (818) 906-7596
Catherine Monroe is an interior designer who has worked for several high end residential design firms including Ralph Lauren, Robert A.M. Stern and Michael Smith. She was born and raised in New York and received her degree from Parsons School of Design. Previously, a Studio City resident, she is currently living in Brentwood, CA, where she runs her own company. For product information included in her articles and interior design consultation, contact her directly at www.catherinemonroe.com