From the hallowed halls of the Ivy League to the foyers of Houston, Beverly Vosko is using her smarts and design insight to create livable, flowing designs.
Thanks for joining us, Beverly. Tell us a little bit about how you got started in interior design.
I am an overeducated Interior Designer who hails from Manhattan. I went to University of Pennsylvania and Harvard University, and was in the middle of getting my MBA at NYU Stern when I got married, immediately moved to London and fell in love with both English and French antiques and English and French decoration. So I studied at Sotheby’s and the Inchbald School of Design and soon people began asking me to help them design their homes.
Texas is consumed with the idea of being the biggest. How do you try to incorporate the Texas lifestyle into your designs? How do you try and limit it?
Texans loves “big” and many homes in Texas are big, so I try to incorporate furniture that looks great in those homes, such as large sofas and large case furniture pieces. But furniture that is too large for a space makes that space look crowded and cramped, so I make sure the décor complements the space I am doing.
Describe some of your most challenging spaces? Would a unique layout always benefit the designer by expanding their ability to be creative? Or could it limit your options?
A long narrow space is challenging because if you are not careful, it can look like a tunnel. Using color and trompe l’oil judiciously, you can fool the eye into thinking the space is squarer. Very angular spaces can be tricky, but again you can fool the eye in numerous ways, into making the space look less angular. Unique layouts can be challenging but that is when we get to be creative and shine.
Open floor plans are more popular than ever and many clients are consumed with the idea of flow. How are your designs patterned to help the occupant feel that the space is stress-free?
I am a remodeler as well as a designer and I am often hired to remove walls and make the spaces more open so that they flow better, especially between kitchens and family rooms. And today everyone wants their homes to be havens of refuge from the outside world. Spaces that are more open look larger and more inviting, and using cool colors such as blues and greens mixed with whites or soft grays create interiors that are calming and stress reducing. I just finished decorating a home in the Heights in Houston where we used a palate of mainly white with green punches to create a fresh, lively yet very soothing space.
Area rugs, our specialty, are versatile. Texas homes and businesses have open spaces with traditional hardwood floors. Explain how you tend to incorporate the rugs into your design.
I am a Continuing Education Provider for Interior Designers and Architects as well as an Interior Designer and I have written classes and webinars on Oriental rugs and area rugs – so I am often asked to purchase them for clients as part of our overall design schemes. Wood floors are very popular today in both residential and commercial settings. Several years ago, I replaced many living room, dining room and family room carpets with wood flooring. Now people are asking me to remove the carpets throughout their homes, especially in their bedrooms and in their entire upstairs if they have 2 floors, and replace them with wood flooring. I just redecorated an accountant’s office and replaced the carpet with wood flooring as well. Then in order to soften those spaces both visually and acoustically, and make them warm and cozy, I purchased area rugs for those spaces. Area rugs also have the benefit of being comfortable and soft to warm on, especially when barefoot. Either the area rug should be the 1st major purchase that we make and we design the room around the rug, or we purchase all the fabrics and furniture and then purchase the rug in when the space is nearly done.
Do you have a type of area rug that you lean on most? Or is it a case-by-case basis?
Oriental rugs have long been popular rugs, but today less pattern is more… so I use primarily wool and silk Tibetan rugs in soft grays and Oushaks in soft beiges which are easy to live with and complement any color scheme.
Are there price limits when it comes to rugs?
In today’s economy there are price limits for everything, but purchasing a good quality area rug can really define a room.
Do you have any final words of design advice?
My advice to client’s who want to decorate a space, is to hire a designer! Hiring a designer will save them money because they will avoid major pitfalls and won’t make expensive mistakes. I was just flown to Santa Barbara by my friends and clients, so I could see the new home they had just purchased there, and help them decorate it. They had told me that they wanted to purchase a small 72” sofa/loveseat and some large comfy chairs, but they had never measured the space and when I saw the home, I realized that they needed a larger sofa because it was going to sit on an 18’ wall beneath a 10’ window! And I saw that they had 2 tall, huge recliners blocking the egress into their main living space which looked terrible, and they wanted to purchase new similar sized chairs, when in actually they needed smaller, lower chairs! When I asked them why they had the chairs virtually sitting in the entryway, they said it was so they could watch the TV on the opposite wall. Since they have a magnificent view of the water and the mountains which was the reason they purchased this home in the first place, I suggested that they get swivel chairs which they place opposite the sofa, so they can see their breathtaking view all the time, and then swivel the chairs to watch the TV. When I explained my reasoning, they were thrilled and so glad that they had flown me to Santa Barbara to see their home and help them make the correct purchases, rather than making the mistake of purchasing all the wrong furniture themselves.
Where can readers see your work, or make an appointment for consultation?
I live in West University Place in Houston TX. My company name is Beverly Vosko Interiors and I have a wonderful website… www.vosko.com and on that website, there is a gallery with many photos of rooms that I have done. I design for my clients and believe in giving them exactly what they want and making their dreams come true. I have been in business for over 25 years and can design in any style, be it transitional, contemporary or traditional, and as I mentioned above, do both design and remodeling. You can also reach me at 713 464-0055 or firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to schedule an appointment and discuss how to make your dreams come true.