Friday, April 25, 2014

Katie Ridder - Rooms To Bloom

This past week I attend the  Charlotte Mint Museum Auxiliary's Room To Bloom Symposium and had the good fortune of hearing the talented New York designer Katie Ridder speak.  Wednesday was a crazy morning for me because I was trying to get work projects settled and pack for a trip I was leaving on later that day, but I thought it would be worth the effort to hear Katie Ridder and I was totally right. 
 If you aren't familiar with Katie Ridder's work the best description is found on her own website:

"Katie Ridder’s extraordinary dexterity with palettes of primary and secondary colors, her playful approach to mixing antiques and modern pieces, and her eye for unusual decorative accents have all established her as a leading, and singular, figure in the world of interior design. "


Room Designed by Katie Ridder

It was refreshing to hear a designer of Katie's statue share her journey and give us a peek into her world with funny and unglamorous stories of client work.  She spoke from the heart and often was self deprecating.   There were so many morsels of wisdom that resonated with me.  Here are some I found most interesting:

1) Colors don't compete with Art, they promote it.  She advises to paint the walls a color even if you have an extensive gallery like collection.  She says often designers pick white because it is easy when a color could be far more interesting.  

2) As a designer, our homes are our laboratories, we use our home to experiment.  We try out your thoughts and processes there.  I had never thought about it that way but it i true.  Our home is often a good example to share with clients.

3) You will never get anywhere by giving up if things don't happen quickly.  Katie started out with craft like items, then moved into making slipcovers and then had wooden printing block made in India, all of which never really amounted to anything but she didn't give up, she kept trying until she got it right.  Those processes taught her so much along the way and are good reminders to her about the path she has traveled to get to a successful place. 

4) Don't expect to start out with the big clients. Katie did not attend design school.  She started out working in House and Garden.  Her first job was filling rolodex cards and from that she worked her way up the ranks to where she is today.  It didn't come easy.  Her success is due to years of hard work and being willing to do what had to be done when often it wasn't glamorous or fun.  

5)   Travel has played a huge role in inspiring her passion and love of design.  She ventured to foreign lands of India, Istanbul and other faraway places with her husband, famed architect, Peter Pennoyer.  Her vast exposure has resulted in threads of exotic lands being woven into her design aesthetic, which often adds a unique and interesting twist in her projects.  It also prompted her to open a shop which she later closed. Many of the pieces of her shop were used to create what she refers to as the "Zam Zam" room in her own home.  It's a place of fun memories where her children entertain friends.  

6. Good designers don't have to go to design school.  I did go to design school but when people ask me if I think they must, I say no.  You either have interior design talent or you don't.  Going to school is certainly great, but you can learn at the hem of a good designer or by working with designers which is what Katie did.  Her discerning eye came from working with designers when she was in the magazine business.


 I have long been a fan of Katie Ridder's and after hearing her speak, my affinity for her has grown even more.  Here are some of my favorite rooms designed by Katie.


Designed by Katie Ridder


 Designed by Katie Ridder


Designed by Katie Ridder


Designed by Katie Ridder

 Designed by Katie Ridder


Katie's work has been featured in all the top shelter magazines.  She has been on the cover of Elle Decor and House Beautiful.  She has appeared on the list of "Top 100 List of Designers" in Elle Decor, House Beautiful and New York Magazine, but Katie is more than that.  She is a artist who uses her talent to paint beautiful interiors for her clients.
She is a weaver of fabulous interiors for families who want to feel like their homes speak to them with style and grace.    




"The Design Process is hard work, but in the end I want my interiors to look inspired and relaxed, not studied" 
- Katie Ridder
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8 comments:

  1. Lisa I so adore Katie's design works and her thoughts on art!

    xoxo
    Karena
    The Arts by Karena

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    1. Me too Karena! Happy Sunday to you! oxox

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  2. Thanks for sharing Katie's work. She is an inspiration !

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    1. You are welcome Patty! Happy Sunday! Thank you for popping in!

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  3. I love her work and featured her designs for the Country Living house in NY a couple of years ago - she did a red room with wallpapered ceiling - it was sublime! Have a great weekend! ;-)

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    1. I remember that room Sarah! She is so talented. Thanks for commenting!

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  4. I simply love the blue dining room. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. i do as well Ann, thank for popping by!

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