Interior designer Erica Reitman has a definite design point of view — how can you tell? The tagline of her website (VintageDesign.Me) says it all: “I Will Kick Your House’s Ass.” And that, she does very well. Erica strives to help homeowners make their homes look “bangin’” and when she’s not working her magic in homes across the country, she’s offering up helpful design tips and advice online. As we’ve done in the past, Design Happens dares to go beyond the interior design photos we’re accustomed to seeing and talks to the designers who actually created some of these stunning rooms. This week, we’re chatting with Erica Reitman.
D-Happ: Tell us about your website.
ER: I created VintageDesign.Me to be a spot online where people can go to get great advice, learn an easy tip, or read about my favorite resources. I really try to stay focused on tangible, real-world value and results, so I don’t do inspiration posts or random mood boards that don’t relate to anything (though I love looking at those things on other people’s sites!). I get how valuable everyone’s time is, so I always want people to come away feeling like: “I’m SO ready to go do this random decorating thing that I’ve never thought about before” after reading one of my posts. I also try to stress that while, of course I’d love for you to hire me to come decorate your home, you really don’t have to because e-v-e-r-y-o-n-e has it in them to put together a great space that makes them smile when they walk through their front door. And yep, I do mean everyone.
D-Happ: How would you describe your aesthetic?
ER: My overall aesthetic is kind of like a mosh pit at a Pearl Jam concert in 1992. I love, love, love the graphic, colorful design of the 60′s and 70′s, and really dig mixing pieces from that era with newer modern pieces. Big, bold pieces of art make me smile, and vintage anything always gets me revved up — especially if it comes from a flea market or a thrift store. I do tend to lean more toward more masculine interiors, and so I especially love working with guys on “dude designing” their spaces. So I guess my aesthetic is eclectic/vintage/arty/masculine/70′s/chic?
D-Happ: Where do you source inspiration?
ER: My favorite source of inspiration is vintage interior design magazines and books. I recently moved to Los Angeles, and the flea markets here are pretty amazing. So I often find great old issues of Architectural Digest, Town & Country and House and Garden magazines that I buy for a buck apiece and then pore over at home.
More of Our Talk
If you peruse HGTV.com, you’ll quickly find that we have thousands of images from designers across the globe. From Modern to English Country, and Eclectic to Traditional — we have all design styles. In the coming months, Design Happens will dare to go beyond the photos and talk to the designers who actually created some of these stunning rooms. This week, we asked Richard Gacek, of the Gacek Design Group, eight fun questions.
D-Happ: How would you describe your overall aesthetic?
RG: It’s a refined sophistication with a relaxed and classic twist — with simple, clean lines and an earthy modern design style. Natural elements and the architectural form play key roles in my work.
D-Happ: Where do you source inspiration?
RG: OMG – everywhere! My travels abroad in both exotic and European locations have been key. For example, a classic historic Parisian building can inspire natural elements, modern furnishings and linen fabrics. Architecture, history and culture — to me — define classic style and inspire comfortable living. Also, I am inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright’s structures that work in harmony with humanity and its environment.
D-Happ: What’s your favorite space/room to decorate in a home?
RG: My favorites are the kitchen and great room (house plans today are open concept). I like to create an experience that addresses the heart of the home — the comfortable place that a family goes to entertain and enjoy each other’s company.
5 More Questions After the Jump
If you’re visiting the Bay Area now through May 27th, you should place the San Francisco Decorator Showcase (at Herbst Manor in Pacific Heights) on your “I gotta see that!” list. This showcase is widely considered to be the West Coast’s premier design show house event, renowned for featuring the work of the region’s top interior and landscape designers.
EXTRA: DECORATOR SHOW HOUSE AT ATLANTA’S TUFFEAU ESTATE >>
Over the weekend, some of our bloggers had the privilege to get inside and check out this home — and, wow. Below are several of our favorite rooms.
Of course there’s something to sleek, modern design — but for me, I can’t get enough of homes where there’s something spectacular in every corner — where your eyes are full of wonder everywhere you look. A warm, rich and welcoming atmosphere just gets me excited. That’s the look I aspire to have in my house, and it’s the look I’m drooling over in this picture made at Designer Scot Meacham Wood’s home.
Scot is one of fifty designers featured in the new book, Designers at Home: Personal Reflections on Stylish Living. The book takes readers on a guided tour through the homes of renowned designers, who share their thoughts on gracious living and how they bring their professional philosophies home.
Gentlemen, do you need help putting together your fall office wardrobe? GQ.com offers an interactive shirt-and-tie tool where you can match up various ties with various shirts, then order the combo you like best. The tool is seriously helpful (and seriously fun).
Tell me guys, are you embracing the return of the skinny tie? Let me know below.
I’ve come to the conclusion that absolutely no bedroom is complete without a headboard. It’s true! Imagine your dream bedroom. I’m certain a gorgeous headboard makes a bold and eye-catching appearance in it. With Valentine’s Day a mere three days away, I’ve been doing some heavy daydreaming about my perfect headboard and bedroom. Tufted? Velvet (oh la la)? Sweet rustic shutters like the one from my DIY headboards post? The possibilities are endless. Here are my top six (yes, six – I couldn’t just stop at five) contenders from HGTV.com’s new guide to all things headboards. What’s your favorite?
5 More After The Jump!
Dan Faires, winner of the Design Star season 5 fan favorite vote, shares a sneak peek of his upcoming online show, DanMade.
I have a super-successful older brother who gets a kick out of discrediting my profession. He has a party trick that starts out with him saying, “Hey, wanna see what my overrated, interior-decorator brother considers a “skill”?” Then he picks up a pillow from his own sofa, moves it three inches to the right, hands someone a faux-invoice and says, “I just placed a pillow….so now I’m a designer! That will be one hundred fifty dollars, please.”
As I visualize clocking him in the face with a Christmas ham, I can’t help but think, “Are decorators really perceived as people who simply shop for pillows and paint walls?”
D Vs. D Showdown Cont’d.
Everybody say hi to our newest blogger, Brian Patrick Flynn from one of our favorite sites, Decor Demon (which he produces, writes and designs all the original content for).
We hope you’ll tune in this week for his fresh take on helping men and women find balance in gender-blended spaces. Then come back every week for Brian’s bloggings about the intersection of lifestyle and design. (Fair warning: His posts are addictive.)
ZicciBea, a luxury linen company created by designers Shoshanah Weinstock and Yali Katz, offers an affordable collection of designer bedding.
This week, one lucky winner will receive their choice of a complete duvet set in any size. For a chance to win, answer this week’s question before 12/11c, Monday, September 20.
This week’s question: Do you prefer your bedding to be perfectly matched or do you mix and match your different sets?
Click for official rules.