The Chairish Podcast
Is There a Future for Craftsmen and Artisans?
It’s a common complaint among designers that it is nearly impossible to find skilled
artisans and craftspeople. Why is there such a shortage, and what can designers do to
inspire more young people to work with their hands? Three outstanding
practitioners—decorative painter Caroline Lizarraga, floor painter Chris Pearson, and
upholsterer Luther Quintana—weigh in on how they learned their craft, and how they find
and train staff to keep up with demand. They discuss the ways social media has
transformed the artisan community and reveal why you just might find your next talented
team member at the local carwash.
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97. Mary McDonald On Her Evolving Style44:00Known for her exuberant blend of Hollywood glamor and restrained Parisian chic, MaryMcDonald has become one of today's most sought-after interior designers. But hersuccess goes far beyond the richly imagined, graphic, and colorful rooms that have madeher a social media star and a favorite of shelter magazines. She also designs fabrics andwallpapers, rugs, lighting, and furniture. She’s even conquered television. In an exclusiveinterview, she talks about her early years in fashion, her love of drama and theatricality,where she finds inspiration, why she now considers herself a country girl, and why shealways, always, loves a gimmick.
96. Has Ralph Lauren Reshaped American Interior Design?40:21On the 40th anniversary of Ralph Lauren Home, which is being celebrated with a lavish new book, three former RL staffers who went on to establish their own successful careers—Joy Moyler, Jenny Wolf, and Mark Cunningham—look at Ralph Lauren’s impact on two generations of American interior designers, their own memories of working for the company and what they learned, how the firm attracts and retains top-tier talent, and why Ralph Lauren’s multi-faceted dreams of the American home remain so potent and so powerful.
95. Can Design Save a Historic American Town?40:55When the historic town of Hudson, New York, fell on hard times decades ago, it was design that came to its rescue. A few influential dealers opened shop, and were followed by designers, artists, and creatives. Now the town is a hotbed of fine dining, chic boutique hotels, and an ever-increasing number of design shops. And the entire Hudson River Valley is undergoing a renaissance. But can the town and the region maintain the momentum? Three lovers of the region—dealer Hannah Khachadourian, designer Nick Olsen, and interiors photographer William Abranowicz—discuss the role design played in this remarkable turnaround and how the area can sustain this success without losing its character.
94. Should You Take Your Clients Shopping?50:12Shopping with clients is always fraught. Can you take clients to showrooms and dealerswithout them beginning to view you as their personal shoppers? How do you make themsee that the process is about creativity, not access, and that your job is not just to sourcefurnishings and objects? And how has the interaction changed in the internet era? Threedesigners from across the country—Martha Mulholland, Kesha Franklin, and KatieDavis— weigh in on when and why they take their clients into the design marketplace. and the price you may have to pay if you decide not to.
93. Christopher Spitzmiller on Lighting Up Tradition40:28Christopher Spitzmiller’s gleaming and boldly colorful lamps can be found in some of themost distinguished homes in America—and in virtually every shelter magazine.In an exclusive interview, he tells how he overcame his dyslexia by turning to pottery andhow he became a designer favorite, updating traditional techniques and classic forms for anew generation. He also discusses his evolution into a social media maestro with his postsabout his house and garden at Clove Brook Farm, why he feels the current “maker-moment,” is here to stay, and why he is optimistic that respect for craft and the hand-madeobject is only going to increase.
92. How is The History of Design Crucial To Its Future?46:08Designers have always looked to the past for ideas—but there is so much design history tochoose from! What styles and periods remain relevant? What still works even thoughmodern life has undergone so many dramatic changes? What’s ready for a revival and whatremains hopelessly dated, never to rise again from the dustbins of history? Two youngdesigners—Noz Nozawa and Dan Mazzarini—and historian Emily Evans Eerdmans weigh inon why a knowledge of the past remains crucial, which periods they love and which theywould rather forget, and why even 18th century bows, cuckoo clocks, and folk art quilts areripe for reinterpretation.
91. 2023 Real Estate Update: What Every Designer Needs to Know49:06Real estate and interior design are intimately connected. When mortgage rates went up,sales slowed down, and we heard the first rumblings that the two-year design binge duringthe pandemic might be coming to an end. So what happens now? Three real estateprofessionals—Leonard Steinberg of Compass, Amanda Pendleton of Zillow, and globalluxury expert Mickey Alam Khan—weigh in on what they see ahead for sales and rentals,why they feel buyers and sellers are ready to accept a “new normal,” why there’s no easysolution to housing’s affordability crisis, and the many reasons the interior design industryhas to be optimistic about what’s ahead.
90. Why Is Kitchen Design Changing So Dramatically?43:25The kitchen is the heart of the American home—and the hardest working room in the house. But it is also an ever more important canvas for creativity and style. Three kitchen-design experts—Barbara Sallick, Matthew Quinn, and Sophie Donelson—weigh in on why kitchens are more crucial than ever, evaluate all the latest trends, and reveal why efficiency is over-rated and why an old-fashioned table lamp may be the most innovative kitchen appliance of all.
89. Summer Entertaining 2023—What’s Trending, What’s Timeless43:30Summer is the best season for entertaining, whether bringing together family and friends for a casual lunch or an over-the-top wedding. But entertaining can be stressful. Is the food you serve au courant? Is your table-setting up to snuff? Will your party prove Instagram worthy?Three party planners extraordinaire—Lulu Powers, Bronson van Wyck, and Tara Guerard— talk about what’s new in summer entertaining, what’s timeless, and what you should never worry about. Recounting their biggest disasters and their most inventive solutions, they share how to bring a splash of style to every summer gathering—from hauling out the sterling to preparing colorful flavored ice cubes.