Words of Wisdom from Michael Graves

“I am inspired by architects who address the entire gamut of design, from buildings to the smallest artifacts they contain. When I was in school, I thought that was what architects did.” -Michael Graves

I was going through some of my old papers that I saved for their inspirational value & came across an amazing interview with Michael Graves from O at Home .

Michael Graves founded his firm in Princeton New Jersey in 1964. You may recognize his name from his line of home items he's been designing at Target since 1999. His firm's projects include the Detroit Institute of Arts, Disney's corporate Burbank campus, US Courthouse in Nashville, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas in Houston, Rice University South Campus Master Plan, check out Wikipedia for his entire list of impressive projects. He's arguably one of the most influential American Architects in history. He's amazing at incorporating architecture with Interior Design & furniture & product design.

He has some good things to say...{his thoughts are quoted, the rest is just me blabbering on}

1. "Form must never trump function." I follow this mantra daily. If you first figure out exactly how something has to perform you can then make it look super cool.

2. "Views are overrated; it's light that counts." I don't necessarily agree with this, but natural light is uber important to any design.

3. "Over-matching is always a major faux pas." I have a discussion similar to this with someone nearly every week. Think about your room like you think about an outfit. It doesn't have to "match", coordinating is the better route to take. Just relax & have fun with your space.

4. "Architecture only does part of the work." The rest of the work is done by how the interior functions with furniture. "Every room has a foreground and a background. But you also need a middle ground- like a table- to go between."

5. "Sisal is an easy solution to a bare floor." I love adding a sisal rug to any style room. The texture works well in any space, plus it adds the same sound dampening as a wool rug.

6. "Playfullness has universal appeal." Interior design shouldn't be taken too seriously. None of it is permanent, relax & experiment a little.

7. "It's more important to make yourself happy than to be like your neighbor." Amen to that, I couldn't have said it better myself. Your neighbor doesn't have to live in your home. You do. Figure out who you are & what you like & your home will fall into place.

8. "Well-chosen paint conveys richness without costing a lot." This is said a lot. Paint is the most inexpensive way to create a big impact in your room. I've been into high-gloss paints lately.

9. "How you arrange furniture affects interaction." I heard this saying before I went to design school, "pay attention to how your guests rearrange your furniture during a party, that's how you should have placed it in the first place." I don't know where I heard it or if I'm even quoting it word for word, but it's stuck with me & it's what I think about when I'm laying out a furniture plan.

10. "Good design should be available to everyone- and I do mean everyone." Michael Graves has always believed in this, but he's even more passionate about making it a reality since a virus left him a paraplegic years ago. Good design is important, it improves lives. That's why I started this business, all people deserve good design in every aspect of their lives.
{pictures found on google images, Michael Graves website & Architectural Digest}

I'm loving that it's summer here! Not that it ever gets too cold in Houston. What are your big plans for the week? I have some big goals to get through. Here's to getting through it & making it fun! Happy Monday!