“Color, Pattern, Culture”. This is the slogan that expertly defines Atelier Interior Design, an award-winning interior design firm based in Denver, CO. With “Color, Pattern, Culture” being at the heart of everything they do, their designs are driven by vibrant color and pattern complimented with textural and sculptural details. Add a dose of global and cultural inspiration and their eclectic style is brought full circle.
You may be wondering why we are introducing Atelier Interior Design? This happens to be the first of many in our new Style Files series in which we sit down with interior designers to pick their brain on what they do best and how what they do best relates to furniture. Keep reading for a deep dive into the science (and fun!) of colorful, vibrant design via our conversation with the Atelier design queen, Katie Schroder:
Just like Tandem Arbor, you’re a Denver based company. What do you like most about designing Denver spaces and homes? What people, places and things in Colorado do you pull the most inspiration from?
The great thing about designing in Denver is that we get people from all over the country and world that move here - it’s the new hot place to move to. So, we get to create designs with a variety of styles - we get the Denver historic homes to the transitional family homes to the eclectic artsy New Yorker vibes. We get inspired by the different stories, backgrounds, art and styles of different people. All that being said, we still have a vibe here in Denver which is more laid back and outdoor centric, but values art, architecture and good design. Color in nature is a huge inspiration as well. I often take photos on a hike or a landscape and take inspiration from those for schemes that we put together.
How would you describe your design style? Why do you think you gravitate towards that particular style?
Our mantra is Color, Pattern, Culture, which can be vague, but it holds true to what we do. We always bring the color courageousness, experimentation with patterns, and pull from our clients’ own cultures or their travel experiences. We really value inclusiveness and love all that other cultures have to offer. The joy is putting it all together!
By scrolling your Instagram, we can see you have a special knack for bringing out personality through colors and patterns. How do you approach figuring out the right colors and patterns for a space? What do you do if a client is hesitant to use too much color or venture outside of their comfort zone?
With every client we start by pulling together fabrics/wallpapers/furniture pieces that we are vibing with within the space. We also ask what colors the client is drawn to and ask about the colors/patterns/styles they wear - what someone puts on their body speaks a lot to what they want to see in their home. We are definitely able to tame things down colorwise, and sometimes a space can’t even carry a lot of color, but we try to open our client’s minds to new color ideas from the get go - I mean, people look at our portfolio and hire us for that very reason right?
When wanting to add personality and charm to a design/space, what do you turn to to do so - the furniture, art, materials, decorative pieces, etc?
All of the above. We don’t typically use the same items/colors/wallpapers/etc. in multiple homes. We want the design to be as unique as possible, therefore, we try to bring personality out in colors, patterns in fabrics, shapes in furniture, art pieces, lighting, etc.
We are in the business of custom furniture, so we’d like to pick your brain on furniture a bit.
What is your go-to sofa style for timeless impact that doesn’t lack in design or personality?
I think a box armed sofa with clean lines, a bench cushion and a tapered leg is a classic that you can’t go wrong with. Comfy, larger armed pieces with chunky legs will also never go out of style but it’s more casual.
Do you like to upholster furniture in a pattern or do you tend to stick to solid colors?
Pattern for sure. There definitely needs to be a balance between solid and patterns in any design, but man do we love a patterned sofa. Why not make a fabulous statement on the largest piece of furniture?
When you’re sourcing furniture for a project, are there certain details or features you always look for?
Classic or clean with a little edge to them, whether it be a nailhead detail, tufting, channeling, a leather welt, a baseball stitch, a tall back, a really wide arm or an exaggerated seat cushion size, either small or large.
Do you often have to turn to customizing furniture in order to achieve the design concept you have in mind?
Yes. Retail options are getting better, but in general we do custom furniture. Retail options tend to not have as many fabric/finish options to choose from, or they may have a hundred colors, but no patterns for example.
When you think about all the beautiful transformations you’ve created, which most embodied the Atelier brand, mission and style?
3 Projects stand out:
As an interior designer, what is your favorite part of the process? What makes you most excited about what you do?
I love walking into the home or space and instantly know what it needs. Then it’s figuring out what the client is like and what they are looking for, to which we piece that puzzle together. I would say it often happens at the first meeting, but sometimes it can take 3 or 4 before we have it locked in. It’s the pure joy of the job!