Suzanne Valvano’s sophisticated yet relaxed sunroom was a highlight of last year’s Oxford Arts Alliance Showhouse fundraiser. The West Chester-based interior designer describes her style as “transitional with a spin.”
Favorite room in her house: My master bathroom. It was just remodeled and has the feel of a sanctuary. Designers who inspire her: I really can’t pick one because I follow so many, so I’ll start with three who come to mind: Kelly Hoppen, Thomas O’Brien and Tobi Fairley. I’d like to blend a mix of these three to create my own design style.
Favorite design advice: A great ear is always key. My initial goal when I first meet a new client is to listen, listen, listen—advice and direction will come later. I not only ask what they like but also what they don’t like. In the end, it’s their home, and they have to love it and live in it. It’s all about finding what aesthetics they’re passionate about, and turning our blended ideas into a living reality.
Color she couldn’t design without: Gray—hands down. It’s the new neutral. One of my favorites is Benjamin Moore’s Revere Pewter HC-172—a chameleon gray that works with most furnishings.”
Element she loves to incorporate into a space: I like to make sure to include something collected or very personal to the homeowner as a signature that this is their personal home.
Favorite rooms to design: I honestly don’t have one. Each room becomes a favorite for me after I’ve completed it.
Her definition of good taste: Less is more. Don’t over-accessorize or clutter your rooms. A few interesting accessories and fresh flowers is all you need.
Three words that sum up her design: Warm, livable, fresh.
Favorite project: My first client’s house. She encouraged me to switch careers and start my own interior design
business because she believed in me and knew I had a knack for it.
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