Spooky, dark and bold

Interior design briefs come in all forms – here, key guiding words from the homeowner put others off, while they allowed this designer to shine

Designed by Leah Atkins Interiors

From the interior designer:

This owner had actually met with several designers that had turned down her project simply because of her design style. 

She used the words spooky, dark, and bold to describe her aesthetic. 

While this is certainly different than what we are used to hearing from homeowners, I was thrilled to take on the project and viewed it as an exciting challenge.

The house is located in Lawrenceville, Georgia, and is 2230m², with four bedrooms and four bathrooms.

Intellectually provocative and abstract

There are elements to this home that really separate it from other projects – its personality is intellectually provocative and abstract. There’s an inspiringly creative energy there. 

I wanted the home to evoke a sense of wonder while at the same time intertwining the feelings of inquisition and being welcomed home. 

We wanted original art on the walls that would invite conversation and depict black people in non-African environments. 

The owner wanted to be sure that her children had people that represented them on the walls of their own home. 

As a white person, I didn't realise how difficult of a request this would be. 

Almost all art (especially non-original art) featuring black people shows them wearing African clothing. 

Confronting privilege

It definitely gave me a quick gut punch regarding my privilege again. 

I love that this project not only allowed me to look outwards as all interior design projects do, but it also pushed me to look inwards at my privilege. 

I hope that every white person that walks into this home feels that same push.

The statues

I actually spotted these statues on Facebook marketplace and immediately sent a picture to the owner! 

We didn't even have a place in mind for them, but we knew she had to have them. 

They were originally made for a book tour and followed the author around the country. 

I love how strikingly beautiful they are as well as the statement they make. 

Especially during this time, when we are past the civil rights movement but black people are still having to fight for their rights in this country every single day, they hold such powerful meaning and evoke strong emotions.

Statement piece

The formal living room is without a doubt my favourite room in this home. 

I love when I'm able to paint a room black, and this was the perfect opportunity to do so. 

The original painting hung above the sofa is one of my favourite statement pieces in the home, as well as the chandelier. 

The bold colours in this space mixed with the luxe velvets definitely give off the spooky vibe the owner requested. 

And advice for your own/the reader's project

Don't be afraid to be different! Whatever your style is, it can be done in a chic way that feels put together. 

Designed by: Leah Atkins Interiors

Story by: Trendsideas

26 Feb, 2023

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