Patrick Thompson Design (PTD), Detroit
Client’s home office,
I was fortunate to begin with a great space with an incredible view. The client never used the room, so it had become a catchall and wasn’t an enjoyable place. I love the level of customization: the millwork, furniture, and draperies were all custom by PTD. The wall color is Benjamin Moore Dragon’s Breath.
I’ve noticed people using maroon and gray again, which concerns me a bit. Interior design trends often follow fashion, and, with the ’80s and ’90s being such a hit right now in the fashion world, I’m hoping interior design doesn’t follow.
Pay attention to scale. Just because something looks good in a showroom or store, doesn’t mean it will work in your space.
Look for color inspiration all around you. If you see an ad or a picture you like, figure out why and pay attention to the colors. My go-to white is Benjamin Moore’s Decorators White. When used properly, color can really make the space. Painting creates impact on a tight budget.
When embracing trends, keep the furniture and architecture simple and classic, and it will never go out of style.
Tutto Interiors, Northville
I met my clients in the home’s drywall stage. I love getting in early so that, with the client, I can plan every detail before appointing the furniture.
This formal living room is a bit glamorous, but you
still feel you can curl up on the sofa. While it’s very grand in scale, it’s not imposing.
Interior design is a layering process for me. That first layer in a room or home takes on a personality once you bring in flooring materials and furnishings. Then, I like to evaluate the home again and bring in just the right finishing touches. It’s like fashion: A dress is just a dress until you find the right shoe.
Trend changes as fast as you can say the color blue. I
always guide my clients into a classic timeless look.
You can put anything with a great standard taupe on a wall. I especially like the Farrow & Ball palette; even
the boldest of colors are still soothing to the eye.
I tell my clients to do what they love and it will stand the test of time.
Serba Interiors, Birmingham
The designer’s own Ann Arbor living room
Although the living room is the room most people don’t use, we use ours often. It’s a comfortable space for building a fire and reading or entertaining. The soft blue-green is a great background for the art collection, which is from trips I’ve taken throughout Europe.
I like to mix antique and contemporary art with furniture that has clean lines.
Comfort and classical style are very important to me. I tend to avoid trendy things, and my clients thank me for it a few years down the road.
If you don’t want to tire of things, stay away from strong color or pattern. There are always exceptions, such as cottages or kids’ rooms. Stay with soft tones. I usually recommend neutrals for a background but will occasionally do a room with a deeper accent tone or color.
Liking something doesn’t always mean it will work for your space. Consider scale. Remember: You can always change pillows and rugs, but large furniture and backgrounds, such as tile, can be more costly to change.
Walter Herz Interiors, Bloomfield Hills
Designer’s own Bloomfield Hills living room
Taste is timeless. I designed this room in 1970 and I love it as much today as when I did it. Old does not mean throw it out. The only items in this room that have been updated are the draperies, the skirted table, the four French bergère chairs, and the Korean chest. The aubergine walls, two Mies van der Rohe Barcelona chairs, petit-point carpeting, cocktail tables, game table, and chairs are original pieces. The sofas have been recovered and the arms altered to look softer. When I walk into this room, it makes me smile remembering the parties and friends who’ve shared important moments with me.
Never believe in trends. They’re made up by marketing people, so consumers feel they must buy the new look. Classic design is always in style and will always hold up over time. Logic has a lot to do with design. Does the furniture layout work? Is it easy to navigate around? Does the room function for the family?
My trademark is sophistication, but livable and comfortable. I want all the rooms to not feel threatening, that you could put your feet up on the table.