Residence in Preston Hollow - Living Room.
"Waste not, want not." You heard this phrase as a child, most likely from your mother as she admonished you to finish you broccoli or put you in hand-me-downs. (My apologies if you like broccoli or vintage clothes.) We also heard, "It's sweet to share." Most of us endured the utterance of these adult catch phrases well into our teen years and may even have asserted that we would never use them with our own children. These and another dozen or so sayings that got under the skin became verboten and were simply stricken from our lexicon until we had a home of our own and wasteful use (or non-use) of food and space or anything else meant a strained budget or worse. So we learned to economize and to share.
In our mature years we often began to look at space differently. And what better way to illustrate space as a completely indispensable daily commodity in our lives than by presenting the work of two pacesetters of taste and space, Susan Smith and Vicki J. Crew, who together comprise the design team that is Urban Interiors.
Residence in Preston Hollow - Entry.
Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Crew each has her own style which, when combined, reveals their dedication to creating smart and contemporary urban dwellings. Having recently finished homes in Santa Fe and Vail, Tahoe and Sun Valley, their range of style and their ability to create space where none is seemingly available has helped them hit the Dallas design radar as well. These two ladies are poised to make a unique and memorable statement. If you like the images they shared with me for this blog, you will find the rest of the images from their photo shoot available on the Urban Interiors website very soon. The residence is in Preston Hollow, Dallas. The high-rise apartment is at The Azure.
Residence in Preston Hollow - Living Room.
Residence in Preston Hollow - Conversation Area.
Our lives are filled with things we have to do, like it or not. However, being at home is one thing that should be a joy. Clean lines, complex elements of color and consistent equity of application make their projects a joy to behold and, I can only imagine, a true pleasure to inhabit. "We encourage a thorough edit of nonessential items before we move forward with the job," said Mrs. Smith.
Residence in Preston Hollow - Entry Vestibule.
From the 12,000-square-foot Preston Hollow residence to a luxurious executive high-rise retreat, the mantra is the same. "We make every inch count, even if it is negative space used for effect," Mrs. Crew stated. The entry of the Preston Hollow home above is a perfect example of that attitude.
Executive Residence in The Azure - Living Room.
If negative space heightens the drama within a larger residence, what then may be used to create the sense of the neutral expanse in a smaller high-rise or flat? The clever use of a custom-designed sofa allows the living room area to flow seamlessly into the dining room; this provides generous room for entertaining, a benefit which not every high-rise floorplan will allow. Again, each detailed addition must adhere to the same code. In effect, each piece must earn its keep!
Executive Residence in The Azure - Dining Room.
Vicki and Susan depend on color and "the perfect fabric or furniture from favored lines to give the impression of increased space," explains Susan. The living spaces above and the bedroom below are both excellent illustrations of this. Furniture and textiles have been chosen with pinpoint accuracy to complete a look specific to the client and savvy regarding issues of space conservation.
Executive Residence in The Azure - Master Bedroom.
There is so much in design that may seem strained or predictably overcomplicated. This is not the case where Susan and Vicki's projects are concerned. To that point, the bedroom that Vicky and Susan have designed for their client at The Azure is an executive retreat within a retreat. Taking advantage of the large glass windows, the bright colors shown in the bedroom above increase the perception of livable, wide-open space. What a joy indeed to wake up to the view offered from this room on a bright Sunday morning. Possibilities and hopes abound when the environmental setting is in harmony with our own personal needs and taste.
Executive Residence in The Azure - Kitchen.
Nowhere does economy of space and a focused use of material count more than in a kitchen. When I mentioned that it must be very painstaking, roaming the design areas and Dallas at large to find just the right items, Vicki's eyes lit up. "I've got something here that will help demonstrate how we feel about what we do." She then fished in her appointment book for a moment and retrieved a very small card bearing this quote:
"A man who works with his hands is a laborer; a man who works with his hands and his brain is a craftsman; but a man who works with his hands and his brain and his heart is an artist.” Louis Nizer (1902-1994)
Executive Residence in The Azure - Powder Bath.
The powder bath at The Azure residence is a study in spacial equity and material obsession. These designing women have mastered something most people will never even comprehend: when to say "Stop, we're done."
When asked what their greatest design fantasy would be, they surprised me with a very quick answer. "We would love to spend the night in the Allan Knight showroom," Susan said. I told them that they would more than likely have to share their beds with one errant showroom cat named Burma as she has, of late, learned to sneak out of her office to sleep wherever she likes.
"That's all right; we don't mind sharing." Their proven formula for success continues to be that, even in their everyday life.
And it is, indeed, "sweet to share."
Thanks to the the ladies of Urban Interiors for their professional images and access to the projects.
Susan Smith: Co-owner and Pricipal Designer
Vicki J. Crew: Co-owner and Principal Designer
Professional photography by Michael Hunter for Urban Interiors. All rights reserved.
For more information on Urban Interiors, please visit: http://urbanint.com/
article by: Cearan Henley
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