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Make Room: Modern Design Meets Craft in St. Paul

Greg Walsh room. Photo: Steve Henke, stevehenke.com
Donna D’Aquino, Metal Sculpture; donnadaquino.com
Carol Sobieniak, Rug, flyingcarpetstudio.com
Greg Walsh room. Photo: Steve Henke, stevehenke.com
Photo gallery (29 images)

What happens when modern design and fine craft come together? Well, read on!

To celebrate our fabulous 2013 show season, we invited regional interior designers, architects, and stylists to create 10-by-10-foot room settings — all inspired by fine craft made by our show artists.

Take a peek at the following pages to meet our Twin Cities professionals and see a few of the finished settings. Coming to our show in St. Paul? All of the vignettes will be set up on the show floor just for you.

So if you’re searching for something special to adorn your home, start here for some great ideas.


St. Paul American Craft Council Show
St. Paul RiverCentre
April 19-21
Click here for tickets, show info, and artist listings.


Designer: Greg Walsh, Allied ASID
Design firm: Walsh Design Group
Inspiration: Donna D’Aquino, metal sculpture; Scott McGlasson, wood furniture; Carol Sobieniak, rug
Design style: Our firm captures and exploits nuances of space through architectural detailing, materials, and furnishings. We believe every interior can capture an emotional response from our clients, regardless of style.
Vision: Pure, simple, organic, and modern aesthetics brought the three artists’ pieces into harmony. Paired with simple, modern Ligne Roset furniture, the sculptural, delineated lines of Donna D’Aquino’s pieces dance gracefully with Scott McGlasson’s solid, elegant furniture. All are grounded by the geometric, organic elements of Carol Sobieniak’s rug. The space is a modern yet approachable balance of materials and lines.


Designer: Lucy T. Penfield, Allied ASID
Design firm: Lucy Interior Design
Inspiration: Louise Harris, recycled metal wall hanging
Design style: I’m known for the lavish use of color and positive energy within a room. I like to blend traditional and modern elements with a sense of surprise and whimsy.
Vision: I wanted to highlight the high contrast and playful use of geometric forms in the relief circles of the piece designed by Louise Harris. Playing off the artist’s use of shape and form, I created an evocative space with an emphasis on geometric forms, positive and negative space, and dramatic color.


Designer: Kate Regan
Design firm: The Sitting Room
Inspiration: Eileen Goldenberg, mixed-media wall hanging
Design style: The design style of the Sitting Room is updated traditional. Our look tends to be layered and filled with character, mixing the fine with the find.
Vision: Eileen Goldenberg’s work incorporates contemporary elements with fluid lines and soft colors. This juxtaposition is representative of the mix of elements I like to use to create personal and meaningful spaces. 


Designer: Robb Whittlef
Design firm: Historic Studio
Inspiration: Hideaki Miyamura, ceramic vessels
Design style: Personality is the foundation of each room. Stylistically, our firm’s projects run the gamut from urban modern to mountain lodge. Each project is as unique as its owners.
Vision: Hideaki Miyamura’s work is paired with 1960s flooring tiles from Liberace’s last house. A large photograph of the Mojave Desert, framed in white, creates an ethereal, calm setting. I wanted a perfect balance of the past and the present for our high-concept client.


Designers: David Sunderland, Lisa Klick
Design firm: Andrew Martin International, Edina showroom
[email protected]
Inspiration: Valerie Bunnell, mixed-media sculpture
Design style: We’re inspired by a mix of cultures, nostalgia, and decades. Our firm’s style is multilayered and easy living, with touches of the unexpected that you just wouldn’t think go together but somehow do.
Vision: Inspired by the androgyny of form soaring through time and space, we chose Valerie Bunnell’s Rolling sculpture. The art reflects the timeless design of our fusion interiors. It’s as if the figure has shattered an antique timepiece and time and movement have been suspended for a millisecond. The results are a blend of quiet, Eastern stillness and industrial motion.


Designer: Lisa Ball, Allied ASID
Design firm: Design By Lisa
Inspiration: Kelly Marshall, handwoven rug
Design style: My style is classic – whether traditional, modern, or contemporary. I strive to balance color, proportion, and materials so they create a space that lives well.
Vision: I was drawn to Kelly Marshall’s rugs because they are a great combination of beauty and function. From a distance, I was drawn to the beautiful colors and the classic patterns, but  when I looked closely, I could see and appreciate the precision and detail that go into each of her weavings.


Designer: Andrew Flesher
Design firm: Andrew Flesher Interiors
Inspiration: Joe Graci, wood bowl; Lee and Daniel Ross, ceramic sculpture; Jean-Pierre Hsu, wall hanging
Design style: My hallmark is my ability to mix vintage, modern, and classic elements. I blend new pieces with old and design with purpose and restraint. Quality and craftsmanship are key in my designs.
Vision: Inspired by the sophisticated, well-traveled, and educated collector, this room features classic design that bridges decades. I have created a quiet and restful refuge to contemplate beauty, be it an architectural metal wall sculpture, a free-form bowl, an antique chair, or the Mies Barcelona daybed. They all coexist in harmony.


Designer: Sally Wheaton Hushcha
Design firm: Wheaton Hushcha Design
Inspiration: Jennifer McCurdy, porcelain vessels; Anne Vincent, hand-dyed throw
Design style: My design style is classic eclectic. I am energized by ancient classicism, as well as the unique aesthetics of every culture. I am inspired by random and geometric patterns found in nature. I enjoy the energy created when old meets new and when structure collides with freedom of form.
Vision: Jennifer McCurdy’s black and white sculptures convey a sense of flow, like waves, within a classic vase form. My goal was to create a room design that has the same sense of freedom and boundaries. I appreciate how Anne Vincent’s felted shawl warms McCurdy’s porcelain pieces.


Designer: Mike Smith
Design firm: Forage Modern Workshop
Inspiration: W. John Jameson III, handwoven throw
Design style: I believe all design is like a time capsule: It captures our values and is an expression of the way we view the world. My goal is to create meaningful, honest spaces that complement my clients’ character. It’s really about people as much as it is about shapes, color, and textures.
Vision: When I saw John Jameson’s throw – a new product – it immediately felt familiar. This is because Jameson’s pieces are loom-woven and made with natural fibers. He’s taken an ancient technique and made it relevant. His work combines quality, simplicity, and comfort.


Design team: Mark Ostrom, CID, LEED AP; Melissa Jancourt, CID, LEED AP; Mike Haug, AIGA, SEGD; Allison Bedore, Associate AIA, LEED AP; Chris Weidenhamer; Claire Gillis
Design firm: RSP Architects
Inspiration: Lynda Ladwig, ceramic sake set
Design style: RSP Architects is an international architecture and interior design firm that crafts unique, customer-centric solutions for a diverse range of commercial clients. RSP excels at finding efficiencies through design to create inviting, sustainable, productive environments for clients locally and nationwide.
Vision: Our space reflects ancient traditions brought into contemporary culture. Using artist Lynda Ladwig’s sake set as a springboard, we highlight the ritual of craft and the human desire to create and make an environment special.

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