Elle Decor, in conjunction with the Junior League of San Francisco, recently selected 11 designers to decorate a newly renovated 4500 square foot mansion in the St. Francis Wood neighborhood of San Francisco. Last weekend the doors of the first ever Elle Decor Showhouse were opened up to the public. The task of designing a child's room was given to Grant K. Gibson, named by Domino as one of "10 designers to watch" in 2009 and one of "5 designers to watch" by Elle Decor in 2010. With lofty credentials like that, we were absolutely thrilled that Grant made time in his busy schedule to share some photos and chat with us.
Tell us about that amazing wallpaper! The wallpaper is by de Gournay. It is a custom color that I picked from a Benjamin Moore color (strawberry sorbet- 2087-50). It is all hand painted in panels. It took about 3 months to create and tweak all of the details and flowers and birds.
Are the headboards custom? The headboards ARE custom. I was very influenced by Dorothy Draper and Sister Parish with picking something like this in the bold fabric choice. It was a rather bold move to go with something so graphic against a rather graphic wallpaper. After searching at the design center for days for the "perfect zebra fabric"- I was actually in Target and came across king sized sheets that I used to make the headboards and the bedskirts. $69 for a set of sheets.
Will you share some of your sources with us? The pillows and duvets with the bright pink and apple green details are from Serena and Lily as well as the blue pouf. I wanted to then tie in the lamp in teal as well from Christopher Spitzmiller. The Yellow X benches are old Jonathan Adler benches that I had recovered in the bright yellow. I also really wanted to balance the room out with all of it's color with the white curtains and black grosgrain ribbon trim. My work room is Madina Aryeh Custom Sewing.
What was it like working on this project? Overall, working on showcase houses are great. This is my 4th house that I have designed in. It can be a bit of a challenge in a way, as you are creating a space for a fictional person. You don't really have a client to give feedback on what they like and don't like. You are sort of your own client in a way. The creative freedom is a wonderful thing, but in a way overwhelming. There are so many more directions and possibilities. You also have the pressure of this being featured in Elle Decor magazine in the spring as well as thousands of visitors seeing the space live in person (which you don't really get so much when you are designing with a typical client).
I was honored to be apart of this first showcase that Elle Decor has put on. In June of this year- I was named one of the "5 designers to watch" by Elle Decor. So no added pressure at all!
I was really looking forward to designing this room and expanding my comfort zones. I don't typically work in such bright and bold colors. I wasn't given the "teenage" aged group as a direction. I came up on that on my own. Again, she is fictional, but she has very mature taste. I worked with clients children as well. You will notice art on the walls. This is from art that they created for me for the space. Really trying to get into a teenage girls head was sure a new thing for me. I filled the space with all kinds of added details- from an ipad, music playing from Katie Perry and Lady Gaga, Glee, Gossip Girl, pink converse, Twilight books, framed photos of Robert Patterson from Twilight. Bowls of candy, the beds not made, clothing on the floor and a bowl of popcorn with Teen Vogue and Seventeen being read.
I really wanted to create a space that you would walk into and think that a teenage girl lived in the space.
Thank you so much, Grant! Check out the links below for more information.
(Images: Grant K. Gibson Interior Design)