How Important is Interior Design?
Above, an ideal arrangement: Kenneth Brown gave a grandmother a lovely and unexpected fresh start with this airy, 750-square-foot Japanese Pole House. The client's children generously built the structure for her on their own property. There's nothing sad or dismal about this place.
Once when I attended a lecture given by Rose Tarlow, a decorator stood up and tried to get Ms. Tarlow to comment on the vital contribution interior designers make to society. Tarlow balked at this, basically saying that designers do what they do simply because they love it.
I agree that decorators should hardly be ranked up there with physicians, teachers, or volunteers for Meals on Wheels. But I do think good design can bring dignity and joy to people. Especially those who spend most of their time in one small space, and have little choice about where they live -- the elderly, kids in foster care, teens in a hospice.
For most, a private little Japanese pole house, like Kenneth Brown's project, is not an option. However, remember Domino's Woodycrest project? There a team of designers brought high style and comfort to an institutional setting. Wouldn't it be phenomenal if more talented decorators could spruce up the digs of people truly in need of cheerier surroundings?
BTW: If you believe in the power of color, visit publicolor.org.