Meet Elizabeth Cooper, bi-coastal interior designer (elizabethcooperinteriordesign.com), art aficionado and prolific furniture revitaleur. We've collaborated with Elizabeth on numerous projects and admire her fresh, sophisticated style. Read on to learn about this designer's thoughtful approach to interiors, furniture revitalization and some of our recent collaborations.
You started your design career as an art advisor. What have you brought into your interior design work from your time as an art advisor?
Art really completes and personalizes a home in a very different way than furnishings - there is not the same need to heed to functionality or practicality, it’s a purely creative acquisition. I love collaborating with clients to build a cohesive collection over time - whether it’s photography, abstract painting, landscapes or art acquired on their travels, we work together to thoughtfully blend art into their home.
How would you sum up your design style?
My style as an interior designer is not fixed, rather the spaces I design are reflections of the people who live there. My goal is to create inviting and unique spaces. That being said, I always incorporate comfortable seating along with several one-of-a-kind pieces to add an extra element of character and richness. As for my personal style, I’d describe it as a combination of classic East Coast Coastal and California/British Bohemian.
What do you take into consideration when deciding to revitalize a client’s existing pieces versus buying new?
Incorporating repurposed pieces into my designs has always been a focus. There are so many reasons to work revitalized pieces into a room - sentimental connection, personal stories, character, uniqueness, ecological/environmental benefits, the list goes on. When considering revitalization for a client’s existing furnishings, I assess how well the piece physically fits into the space, the quality of the piece, and most importantly, the personal significance of the piece to the client. When sourcing vintage or antique furniture for clients, I’m drawn to beautiful wood finishes and pieces that have solid, well-constructed frames with unique lines or interesting details. And I definitely avoid pieces that are ubiquitous or “on trend” in terms of style.
When working with a client who has never had a piece revitalized, do you face hurdles getting them on board?
No, not really. Most clients appreciate the value of repurposing and revitalizing existing pieces and enjoy the process of transformation that occurs when a piece they've owned for years suddenly looks completely different and amazing!
Do you have a favorite era or furniture designer? What draws you to this particular style/designer?
Charlotte Perriand is a furniture designer I admire – her designs are organic, warm and timeless. She was an incredibly accomplished and respected woman in furniture design at a time when men dominated the field. She took a holistic view of design, believing in the importance of creating something each day whether it was a drawing, a piece of furniture, a garden, or simply a thoughtfully prepared meal.
Any advice for people who would like to revitalize a piece and are not working with a designer?
If you have a connection to a piece - whether it’s a family heirloom or simply a piece with a great personal story - it is worthwhile to revitalize it. Don’t be afraid to transform the piece; you’re honoring its history by using it in your home so pick a fabric or a finish that is a reflection of your personal style. Get inspiration on Revitaliste, Pinterest and shelter magazines…and then trust your design “gut”. And of course Revitaliste is an amazing resource to help guide you to design a piece that is uniquely yours.
Have a sentimental attachment to furniture that needs revitalizing? Try our design consultation service here.
A few more beautifully revitalized pieces by Elizabeth Cooper Interior Design.