Inspiration: Pasadena Showcase House for The Arts 2012

2012 Pasadena Showcase House for The Arts

Although a coastal fog was blanketing Southern California, no CAPID members’ spirits were dampened.

Photo by Elizabeth Ribons, CAPID

As we arrived at the 2012 Pasadena Showcase House for The Arts location, it was beginning to rain, but it didn’t matter.  The house grandly stood on well appointed grounds, bright with a light plaster exterior, tile roof and details that noted its early Spanish design.  This beautiful home was our host and luxurious shelter for a much anticipated tour.

We gathered together, entered the home through a gorgeous original wood door and began our tour.  Known as ‘Casa de las Puertas’ (House of Doors) –  we noticed more lovely doors and details that make a design home unique.   Much effort was given to respecting the original plan of the home – with smaller rooms and cozy spaces – typical to the era the house was designed.

At the Showcase there is always something unusual and new to discover.  This year, what stood out for me were Wall Design Tattoos.  A medallion above a pendant fixture appeared to be an actual rosette.  Upon further examination, I realized that it was a painting, but not like any I have seen.

The Showhouse docent explained the process of a printed paper being applied to the ceiling, then covered with a special solvent. The paper was removed and the design remains on the wall or ceiling.  It was unique and I made sure I noted it in my little book.

The overall color scheme was evident throughout the home – a deep palette of spice colors with the occasional touches of bright blues.

A lot of attention was given to details of the home, but as a designer I seek the “ultimate surprise” the unusual, unexpected treatment or idea.

While there were a few new ideas here and there, I found myself breezing through the spaces a little more rapidly than some of the others around me…..then, I noticed something. These strangers around me were not designers.  I started hearing their comments about what they found to be interesting, alluring and beautiful.  It reminded me to keep my eyes and ears tuned into their voices – the viewer, the customer, the client.

As professional designers, our job is to keep our book of innovative ideas and inspiration close, ready to surprise with something unexpected and unique: a touch of color, swath of fabric, or treatment a client had not envisioned, but loves.  To create a beautiful space for day-to-day living in is a special honor entrusted to designers …….and why I love what I do.

Contributed by Elizabeth Ribons, CAPID