Friday, February 4, 2011

Friday Feature with Angie Hranowsky

Happy Friday all my favorite followers and lovely friends. Whether you under a foot or two of snow, weathering a cold rain or enjoying some sunshine, I hope it is a great day! 

The designer I am featuring today first caught my attention on the back page of Domino magazine's April 2006 issue 10 things that make me happy. She was in one of my favorite cities, Charleston, SC, within weeks of giving birth, and her radiance was emanating...I was hooked. From that day on I have kept up and admired from afar interior and graphic designer Angie Hranowsky's growing portfolio. Labeled as the "New South" Hranowsky's designs are fresh, modern, glamorous yet unfussy, vintage, and all mixed together create an utterly chic abode. Hranowsky has been named one of Traditional Home's "20 Designers to watch", her interiors have graced the pages of magazines such as Coastal LivingHouse Beautiful, and she is now dishing out inspiration on her Design Studio Blog
I caught up with Angie and she was kind enough to answer a few questions for me, giving us the skinny on what the life of the mother of 2 and designer is really like. Thank you Angie, you are truly an inspiration!
To see more of Angie Hranowsky's work check out her portfolio Here and you can also see her "Instant Room" featured in the current issue of House Beautiful.

Where are you from and what brought you to Charleston?
I'm from Louisville, KY. I moved to Charleston for the same reason that so many people do. After a visit I fell in love with it and moved here for a short time 15 years ago. Then after living in Atlanta and Miami came back in 2000. 

What led you into Interior Design?
I have always loved interior design and I've really been doing it for myself since I was a teenager. Although, before that I was designing some pretty fierce houses for my barbies complete with bed spreads and bolster pillows hand sewn by my grandmother. However, it wasn't until I designed our first house after moving to Charleston that I realized I should be doing this for a living. By that point everyone seemed to be asking me why I wasn't doing it. So upon the suggestion of a dear friend and amazing photographer Julia Lynn, we shot my house. I then promptly sent out a small portfolio piece to all of my favorite shelter magazines and in less than a week I had a call from Metropolitan Home and I never looked back. 
Describe your style?
I refer to my style as relaxed modern. I am absolutely a modernist at heart, but I don't like spaces that feel too cold or too formal. I like to mix things up and incorporate high and low pieces and use lots of texture and color. 

What are some of your favorite looks, accessories, items?
I love the combination of modern with doses of traditional. I use mostly vintage modern furniture and accessories in my design and living in a city like Charleston has allowed me to create a really interesting juxtaposition in my work. My favorite accessories are probably vintage pottery, beautiful cabinet and door hardware, vintage lamps and lots and lots of books. I am also a big collector of art, mostly mid-century abstracts and portraits, but I really just buy whatever moves me.  
Can you give me a brief summary "a day in the life" of Angie Hranowsky?
Wow, which day? They are all pretty bustling. I wake up early and get my 5 and 8 year old off to school. Then it could be straight to the office or straight to a client's house for a meeting, then maybe to another client meeting. From there a meeting with my seamstress, picking up tile or stone samples, running by my favorite antique store and then back to my office to type up work orders, do estimates, pick out fabric samples, answer emails and finish making the phone calls that I didn't get to while driving around half the day. On a good day I might have time to grab a salad from Whole Foods, but if not I keep a stash of dark chocolate bars in my purse. Then I pick up the kids and after dinner and bedtime I am sometimes back on the computer hunting down furniture on ebay, answering more emails or researching for an upcoming blog post. I will say that I have been making a big effort in the last year to really balance out my life more. It's easy for me to become a workaholic because I love what I do, but even when you love it you can become burned out if you don't take time for yourself. So now I work less at night and spend more time reading and relaxing.

Describe your personal fashion? do you lean more toward solids or patterns?
I would consider my personal style to be relaxed modern as well. I love fashion, but I like to be comfortable. If I'm wearing a silk blouse I will almost always be pairing it with jeans. I think I lean towards things that are a little more edgy or bohemian. I wear mostly solids, which is interesting because I use a lot of patterns in my work. I don't wear a lot of bright colors, but I love purples, turquoise, gray, black, white and lots of denim. I also like the contrast of feminine and masculine. I love a simple loose white t-shirt, a pair of skinny jeans and boots mixed with loads of beautiful jewelry.

What or who do you look to for inspiration?
I get a lot of inspiration from textiles, fashion and art. I am constantly looking at blogs and I'm a magazine junkie. I never tear anything out of my magazines and I have a pretty big library at this point. I also love interior design books, especially vintage ones from the 60's and 70's. I am constantly inspired by the commanding work of designers and architects like David Hicks, Billy Baldwin, Albert Hadley, Gio Ponti, Eero Saarinen and Poul Kjaerholm. I also admire the work of such contemporary designers as Tom Scheerer, Miles Redd, Steven Gambrel, Jeffrey Bilhuber and Roman & Williams. 

Your dream project?
I've said before that my dream project would be a small boutique hotel or a classic mid-century modern home by the likes of John Lautner or Albert Frey. That is still true, but I think really a dream project for me is working with a client that has an appreciation for design and for what we are doing. An ample budget and beautiful architecture are always a plus, but you really can't ask for more than a nice, friendly client who admires, appreciates and values your work and the process. I have to say I've been pretty lucky in this department and it always comes through in my work.

What is on your ipod?
The XX, Foster The People, Phoenix, Coconut Records, Florence and the Machine, Ray LaMontagne, Mumford & Sons, Cage the Elephant, Bon Iver and The Avett Brothers to name a few current bands. I also love old school hip hop and rap, Motown, jazz and a little bit of heavy metal so I have everything from Chaka Khan, Sugar Hill Gang, Arrested Development, Prince, A Tribe Called Quest, Lauryn Hill, Motley Crue, Sade, Billie Holiday, Etta James, Louis Armstrong, Frank Sinatra and my all time favorite Marvin Gaye. 
Hranowsky's mid-century Charleston home

What a fantastic arrangement of art on the wall and I adore all the shades of purple she used throughout her home.

The eco friendly constructed beach cottage from Coastal Living, interior designed by Hranowsky.

Enoteca, an Italian wine and cheese bar that Hranowsky graced with her magic touch in Charleston, SC.

Images courtesy of Angie Hranowsky, Photography by Julia LynnSquire Fox, and Tria Giovan


ashley cooper said...

AMAZING!! I love her design work, she is one of my favorites. What a great interview!!! Have a great weekend dear. xoxo

Anonymous said...

Hi Elizabeth,
like her style's very relaxed and not the least bit uptight..yet still presents a bit of elegance that makes these rooms very chic..

Lindsay said...

I was just reading your post and saw that Julia Lynn photographed Angie's house. Julia is a dear friend of ours . . . she & Jesse grew up together.

Life of Style said...

Lindsay, I just heard that today, MW made the connection that she is Julia Couey. Small world, she is so talented and her portfolio is amazing!

alison@MyLittleHappyPlace said...

Well, she certainly DID find her calling, and we're all the beneficiaries!
I love to hear how people came to be designers - it's very encouraging for aspiring designers like myself. Great interview!

shari @ little blue deer said...

She is incredibly talented (and yes, quite gorgeous!). Thanks for sharing. Love your blog too, definitely following! XX!

Naomi@DesignManifest said...

great interview. I love her style. So interesting to hear more about her daily life.

Kate Collins said...

I love this interview. Angie is an amazing designer. What fun to interview her. Such a small world, I saw the comments about Julia Lynn Couey. She is my cousin. Do you know her? She's the best!

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