Interview: Lindsey Coral Harper
Designer Lindsey Coral Harper has worked with some big names in design and in various cities, including Ralph Lauren in London and Richard Keith Langham, Inc. in Manhattan, but her southern roots still influence her style. The April 2014 issue of Maison & Demeure, House Home’s French sister publication, features a Montreal makeover by Lindsey and shows off the bold palettes and pattern choices that have become her signature. Beyond designing for international clients, Lindsey is the co-founder of Lamshop, a furniture, upholstery and accessories shop that sells made-to-order pieces. We talked with her about her use of bright colours and how she approaches reworking a historic home.
House & Home: How would you describe your style?
Lindsey Coral Harper: I would say I’m traditional with a twist. I like colour, and I love pattern and texture. I like an unexpected colour palette and I love to layer.
H&H: You clearly are not afraid of colour or patterns! How do you select your vibrant palettes and do you have any that are your go-to’s?
LCH: I start by shopping. For every new project, I shop and see what I gravitate towards for that specific job, house and/or client. I shop and edit, shop and edit, until I have built up several different schemes for the project. Then I meet with the client and see what they gravitate towards and what they fall in love with. Then it just continues to build itself.
H&H: The Westmount home featured in Maison & Demeure is a historic house; are there special challenges when working with older places? How do you approach the design differently then you would for a newer space?
LCH: I’m from the South, Georgia specifically. I grew up in very old houses, so for me it’s second nature. I embrace the small spaces, the interesting and/or odd room. I believe there is so much history in older homes they already have character; they sort of tell you what they want to be. In a newer space, you sometimes have to work a little harder to make them interesting and/or cozy. Whether new or old, they are all blank canvases to me, and that is always the interesting part of my job, creating something from nothing.
H&H: You’ve said that you like to use local products in your designs; how do you find contractors when you’re working in different cities and who are some of your favourite artists?
LCH: I love to travel and like to learn about new resources and find local craftsmen, shops and trades people. I ask around, read magazines and typically find reputable vendors through other vendors. I am partial to my decorative painter who lives in NYC and Milan, Jay Lohmann. We have known each other for years. He is a true talent and dear friend, a dynamo to be around and he is willing to pack his paintbrushes and passport and hop on a plane with me. He is always up for the challenge and keeps me in stitches!
H&H: What/Who are some of your current inspirations?
LCH: It was recently fashion week… so I’ve been watching the shows, seeing what is happening on the runways in New York and Paris. I also have the luxury of living in New York City and I walk to work… there is inspiration all around me.
1. Lindsey Coral Harper headshot, Kelly Stuart
2. All rooms, Ngoc Minh Ngo