Where do I begin? Perhaps I should start by expressing my long standing desire to design fabric. At Parsons, I took a wonderful class in which we designed prints, and that experience gave me the itch to explore the world of textile design. Now, after having the opportunity to give it a try (in real life), I must confess: it is NOT as easy as it looks! The road was difficult and anxiety ridden, but ultimately, incredibly gratifying.
So how did we get here? Last fall, the great textile designer, Peter Fasano, asked me to participate in a collaboration with 4 other interior designers: Christos Prevezanos, Jamie Bush, and the duo of Todd Nickey & Amy Kehoe. I was insanely excited to get started, and immediately said “Yes!” I thought I would sketch out some ideas, hand them over to Peter’s team and magically, wonderful fabric would appear. Well, I was wrong. Peter was a great help and always there to shepherd us throughout the process, but it was a rigorous one.
I began the process by designing for myself, which was probably my greatest handicap. I spent days and weeks anxiety ridden, afraid of embarrassing myself or not creating something I would be proud to put my name on. And then one day it dawned on me that I had to remove myself from the equation and design this for a client. I immediately knew the client and the space I wanted to design for. Within a client’s gorgeous Dutch home in the heart of Rancho Santa Fe, is a breakfast room, clad with light that streams in from the surrounding garden through the walls of French doors. This client is daring with pattern and color, so I knew I could have some fun.
Like a caged bird set free, I sprang to my studio, blasted music, and began to paint. What started as nothing but puddles of water colors blending together slowly found rhythm and became a succession of repeated of lines. Over and over, the idea became more clear as we send images and ideas back and forth to Peter. Ultimately, I brought the watercolors into Photoshop, creating collections of stripes in different shades and scales. I then printed them, cut them out, and began arranging them into a sort of Franken-collage. Tweak by tweak, the collage became a concept, and ultimately a fabric: Bower.
We had the great opportunity to debut our fabric collaborations at my favorite event, “Legends”, put on by the La Cienega Design Quarter. Each designer created a full installation of our fabric, and then we were asked to talk about the process on a panel discussion with Peter. For my installation, I chose to build a tent. This is one of those moments where you wish you knew then what you know now. A tent seemed like a wonderful and fun endeavor… ha! While I’m at it, why not make a skirt, as well! In the end I could not be more proud of the outcome. It was an amazing experience that really challenged me, and I believe, helped me to grow as a designer.
There were so many special moments and to cap it all off, the editor in chief of Luxe Magazine, Pam Jaccarino, painted this incredible watercolor.
Bower is available through Hollywood At Home in Los Angeles.