Do You Want to Become a Famous Interior Designer? Find Out the Story of Influential Interior Designers in the World
posted on January 15, 2021
These interior designers are famous for their celebrity clients, best-selling product lines, and popular TV shows.
Overnight success is rare in the design industry. The most famous interior designers have spent years working with clients, developing product lines and building their brands. Today's most famous designers have taken various avenues to reach the top, but are now often seen gracing magazine covers with attractive earnings and clients, or appearing in regular shows on TV.
Once successful, they find ways to capitalize on their success and expand their reach around the world. While they each have specific specialities and styles, these designers and architects have certainly left their mark on the industry, and continue to influence the way people live and decorate. Who are these interior designers? Will it be your inspiration for a career in the interior design industry?
In just six years, Joanna Gaines, with help from her contractor husband, Chip - has created a design 'empire'. Since Fixer Upper premiered on HGTV in 2013, the designer and TV star has launched collaborations with big brands like Target and Anthropologie, started magazines, published books, and created shiplap designs and house styles country everywhere.
The couple has also turned the city of Waco, Texas, into a tourist destination with Magnolia Market in Silos, a 4.9-hectare shopping and dining complex that attracts about 30,000 people per week. While the Fixer Upper ended operations in 2018, Gaineses continued on their path to design dominance. Next are hotels in downtown Waco and their own television channels.
In 2002, Nate Berkus made his debut on The Oprah Winfrey Show, and he quickly became one of America's favourite design talents, TV shows, book offerings, and collaborations galore. His eponymous company, which he founded in 1995 at the age of 24, attracted a wide range of well-known clients, including Ricky Martin, and Berkus has partnered in product lines with Target, Kravet, Shade Store, and Framebridge. She and husband Jeremiah Brent star in TLC's Nate & Jeremiah by Design and the couple recently launched their latest collection for Living Spaces.
In 2009, The New Yorker declared Kelly Wearstler the "grande dame of West Coast interior design leader," and since then her reach and influence has expanded far beyond California. The trendsetter has shaped the hospitality industry with designs for Viceroy Hotels and Residences, Four Seasons Anguilla, and, most recently, Proper Hotels in San Francisco, Los Angeles and Austin. On the housing side, his client list includes Cameron Diaz, Ben Stiller, and Gwen Stefani, and he designs lines for Ann Sacks, Lee Jofa, Georg Jensen and Visual Comfort, as well as a collection of furniture and accessories.
Martyn Lawrence Bullard
There is a celebrity interior designer, then there is Martyn Lawrence Bullard, the mainstay decorator for superstars like Elton John, Cher, Kylie Jenner, and Khloé and Kourtney Kardashian. He's also a favourite collaborator for the brand and has designed dozens of licensed designs that include tiles for Ann Sacks, mattresses for Custom Comfort, and a silver crown for Christofle. When he's not designing for the stars, Bullard is making his mark on the hospitality scene with interiors for Casa Laguna in Laguna Beach and the upcoming The Prospect in Los Angeles.
The last two years have been extraordinary for Bobby Berk, a native of Missouri. In 2018, she made her debut as the Queer Eye design expert and quickly became a fan favourite for her impactful home makeovers. The industry veteran launched its retail business in 2006 and its eponymous design firm in 2015, but Queer Eye has brought its modern and livable style to many (as evidenced by its 2.6 million Instagram followers). In October, Berk launched a furniture collection with ART Furniture at the High Point Market featuring 44 pieces, some of which quickly sold out.
Favourite fashion architect is Peter Marino. Design legend, who founded his company in 1978 after working for Skidmore, Owings & Merrill; George Nelson; and IM Pei / Cossutta & Ponte, have designed stores for those with luxury fashion and jewellery brands including Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Bulgari, Hublot, Dior, Fendi, and Graff. Her boutique, like her residential project, is known for its luxurious materials and impressive art exhibitions. He recently released a new textile line for Rubelli and launched Louis Vuitton stores in London and Seoul.
Leading French interior designer Jacques Grange has been creating unforgettable spaces since the 1970s. Over the years he has designed a wide variety of powerful influencers including Yves Saint Laurent, Valentino, Princess Caroline of Monaco, and François Pinault. On the commercial side, he made elegant interiors of hotels such as Mark in New York, Palazzo Margherita of Francis Ford Coppola in southern Italy, Hotel Mamá in Majorca, and, most recently, Cheval Blanc in St. Barts.
Designer Emily Henderson makes American-style games and helps transform bookshelves, cocktail tables and coats across the country. His big break was winning the fifth season of HGTV Design Star, and the network's next show, Secrets From a Stylist, ran for two seasons. She shares her design knowledge with dedicated fans on her popular blog and her Instagram feed, where she has more than 835,000 followers. Her 2015 book, Styled: Secrets for Arranging Rooms, From Tabletops to Bookshelves, is a New York Times bestseller. In addition to practising his interior design and content operations, Henderson has also worked as a home style expert at Target.
Since pottery made its debut at Barneys in 1993, Jonathan Adler has infused colour and interiors into homes. He quickly expanded his business beyond ceramics, designing everything from cushions and furniture to lighting and rugs. Design studio Adler has created the interiors of Parker Palm Springs and Eau Palm Beach, as well as private residences and model apartments. He has many line licenses, including his Now House brand on Amazon; Marijuana lifestyle company's High Standard collection; and partnerships with Kravet, H&M Home and the Shade Store.
While founding his design studio and shop, Aero, in 1992, Thomas O'Brien helped bring warmth to the real modern styles of the era. The shop, which moved from its old SoHo home to the New York Design Center in 2016, is a favourite of tasteful buyers, including fellow designers.
In 2005, he debuted the Modern Vintage line for Target, which brought his classic name and style to large audiences. Author of three books, O'Brien is a prolific product designer with collections in Century Furniture, Waterworks, Visual Comfort, Patterson Flynn Martin, Reed and Barton, and Groundworks.
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This article is adapted from The 20 Most Famous Interior Designers Working Today