The Marriage of Interior Design Styles

When a couple first moves in together, the familiar angst of merging styles and stuff comes inevitably and immediately into play. (The Carrie Fisher-Bruno Kirby wagon wheel coffee table standoff in “When Harry Met Sally” comes memorably to mind.) When joining together in a physical space, it can seem daunting to combine everything so that it all comes together harmoniously.

Yes, blending the styles of two unique individuals can be tricky. But by delving into personality traits and hopes for their home, a couple can successfully blend their design visions to create the abode of their dreams. Here is just one of the instances when an interior designer taps into their trained relationship skills.

For the design team at Inspired Interiors, the recipe for success begins by sitting down and interviewing the happy couple. The clients are encouraged to use adjectives about how they want to feel in their home. The more evocative the language the better. For example, perhaps one partner dreams of a space that feels clean and crisp, while the other half desires delicious and sexy surroundings. While these approaches may seem disparate at first, the second step of the process helps to define and distill the shared design vision.

Based on these conversations and the expressive adjectives they generate, our team researches and compiles images that represent these suggestions. Continuing with our clean/crisp and delicious/sexy examples, the sample photography could include interiors that feature juicy imagery in bright colors with clean defined lines (think: Andy Warhol’s infamous lips collage or Roy Lichtenstein’s Pop Art cartoons) that have tons of sex appeal but presented in a streamlined, straightforward way.

The collection of images is displayed for the couple, with equal images representing each partner’s design approach. The clients can then select images that both agree on and eliminate those that don’t speak to their shared aesthetic. Eventually, a common denominator emerges, ensuring a recipe for design success.

It is then the interior design team’s job to source furniture and artwork that the couple recognizes as representative of both of their visions. By remaining pliable but clear-cut in their individual desires, a shared aesthetic is born.

Happily ever after, indeed.

The Art of the Collection

Are you a music buff with an enviable array of signed concert posters? A world traveler with an exotic assemblage of African masks? Or perhaps your objet d’art collection could rival that of a museum. These items speak volumes about you and your style and deserve to be the centerpiece of your home.

With savvy interior design guidance, your singular collection could take center stage rather than sit unnoticed and unloved in a spare room. These pieces create a sense of wonder and spark conversation among your guests. A collection of clocks, for example, make people think about how time is spent; an assortment of artfully displayed keys can speak to breaking down barriers. It is these thought-provoking elements that truly make a successful home.

Inspired Interiors has worked on numerous interior design projects that have showcased intriguing collections, including a bathroom that displayed a wall decorated with backplates and door knobs from old estates (opening a door to the past, perhaps?). And, in our own River North offices, we have “The Key Wall,” a striking collection of antique keys set on a gold background that makes a definitive statement: “Here we can unlock all of your interior design dreams.”

If your idea of a collection conjures memories of your great aunt’s dusty Hummel figurines, shake up the notion that having an assortment of something — anything! — is automatically boring, old-fashioned or staid. Collections can be fun — wacky, even — and are worth nurturing. Nothing reveals more about your rich personal life.

We can help gather, organize and properly display your unique collections so that they have their rightful place in your home — and in your life. It would be our pleasure to help tell your life’s story through your lovingly assembled objects.

Into the Swing of Things

Interior Swings?

We know you might be laughing but hear us out.

Imagine walking into a gallery and the first thing you see is an entrance hall full of swings. Well, that’s exactly what guests of Paris’ Maison et Objet walked in to see and that’s when we knew we were ahead of the trend. Interior swings are something we have been pitching to clients for a few years now but people didn’t see the appeal. We can guarantee an interior swing is just what you are looking for!

Are you looking to add a little relaxation to your home but you’re not sure what you want? Or maybe you aren’t sure if you have enough room? Why should you consider an indoor swing? “Hanging a swing indoors brings playfulness and a sense of joy to a room,” suggests Allison Bloom, San Francisco-based designer of Dehn Bloom Design. “Swings are emblematic of a rising design vibe that’s more bohemian, imaginative, layered, and open.” This growing trend is loved by introverts and extroverts alike. With some loving the isolation and other’s loving that it stimulates a social environment. This trend is a major rulebreaker when it comes to design but that’s one of the main reasons we love it.

A swing invites creativity to any space and begs for attention—just try to walk past one without stopping, sitting, and chilling out for a few minutes. Plus, it’s the ultimate icebreaker a swing encourages guests to engage with the room and each other. Swings also work well in the office as an easy stress relief tool. You can take a break or continue your work while gently swinging back and forth.

As a trend swings have a lot of potential because they can be paired with any type of decor. A simple wood base and a rope is the perfect match for any minimalist or if you have a boho-inspired room add a wicker basket swing for a cozy reading corner.

Daily stresses can wear out your body and mind. That’s why it’s all the more important to create a calming environment in your home. Of course, there are several types of relaxation leading to recovery. But the method we are most fond of is a swing. Swinging calms, soothes, and brings your stress levels down. The wonderful sensation of floating makes it no surprise that everything else seems unimportant. The beneficial effect of swinging has always inspired people, so why not give it a try? Gentle swinging calms body and mind from one moment to the next. Add one to your office or room and begin your journey to internal bliss.

simply float, swing and relax.

Sensory Swing:

Wicker Swing:

Canvas Swing:

Looking for more inspiration? Click the link for more examples:

-Inspired Interiors

Stay inspired & #daretolive

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Are Bathtubs Making a Comeback?

Light the candles and pour the wine because bathtubs are back

In the past five years, our clients have requested to remove their bathtubs and replace them with larger showers.

This year, more and more clients are listening to our recommendations and carving out ‘me-time’ for a hot bath!

When you are remodeling your bathroom one question you might be asking yourself is built-in versus freestanding. Whichever one you end up choosing, we guarantee you won’t regret it. The dream bathroom is pretty simple and we’ve all seen them: large, sunny bathrooms featuring a beautiful, large enough to swim tub just waiting for a bottle of wine and bubbles. There’s just no denying it, freestanding tubs are gorgeous. And sometimes they are the statement piece of the whole bathroom. Additionally, the fact that these tubs can take any design or material you want (within reason) make free-standing tubs a piece of art as well as a bathroom necessity.

Built-in tubs conserve space and can double as a shower. This can be an important factor if space is going to be an issue during your remodel. If you have room to work with then don’t worry you can upgrade your built-in tub with a variety of options.Built-in tubs can be outfitted with jets, LED lights, and sound systems. If you are looking for less flash and something more practical, you can still benefit from the potential to add more storage around the tub.

At the end of the day, both designs will fulfill their purpose of relaxation. We hope whichever one you choose will provide you with years of bubble bath perfection.

Looking for more inspiration?
Click the link for more luxurious bathrooms:

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-Inspired Interiors

Stay inspired & #daretolive

What happens when Magellan Development engages Inspired Interiors to design the Ultimate Bachelor Pad at the Sky 360 Residences



Who is he?
Dr.JD was born in 1977 in Boston, Mass to an established, prominent family. As a young man, he had dreams of attending Yale University, specifically being accepted into their biotechnology program. Along with a passion for genetic manipulation he also had a knack for origami and creating intricate creations from paper.

What has he accomplished?
In 1995 at the age of 18, after years of hard work he was accepted for early admission to Yale University into the Biotechnology program. During his studies, his hobby for origami began to manifest into a breakthrough concept. After years of testing and perfecting, he founded a major MIT Technology of ingestible origami robots that perform stereotactic brain biopsies and microscopic surgeries. It was a huge success, with recognized accolades from the NY Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes and he received an Innovator Award.

How does he live?
After spending years working on the east coast, Dr.JD turned his attention to the midwest specifically Chicago. With his new found success, he wanted to find a home that not only provided him with luxurious space and comfort but also one that had the potential to be a place of innovation and creativity.

Why Vista?
Vista is the perfect location for Dr.JD as it’s in the heart of Chicago and near major hospitals and medical universities. As a bachelor, this location is perfect for nightlife with a never-ending supply of entertainment and great restaurants.



There is something to be said about watching a movie on your own personal drop down screen while sitting in a vintage 1955 Porsche Spyder.

No one can deny the aesthetic appeal of a koi pond. Peaceful visual elements combine with the meditative sounds of water to help relax and reduce any negative feelings.

Open ultra-contemporary modern feel of custom designed floating stairs that add an eye-popping accent piece to overall design.

A multi-purpose environment has been designed so our bachelor can equally spend his time, both personally and professionally, in a breath-taking elegant setting. Space is sectioned so that the minute he walks through the front door, he can turn left and enjoy the ‘personal mode’ of his space, or turn right and move into ‘professional mode’. The apartment functions to reflect the day and night versions of his personal and professional life.

To the left… As one steps into the living room, the first space they encounter is an incredible drive-in movie theatre with a fully remote-controlled interface. Our bachelor can cozy up with a bucket of popcorn in the front seat of this vintage 1955 Porsche Spyder (just like James Dean). Guests can also enjoy the movie in one of the lounge chairs by Aston Martin (well-known for designing the iconic cars for eternal bachelor, James Bond.)



A lighting configuration made up of both circular and square heads. The square heads depict the stars that make up three major constellations, while the circular heads show other stars which shine less brightly. Each constellation depicted represents an important human quality.

LOCATION: Above the drive-in movie theatre.
SYMBOL: One of the largest and most well-known constellations. Represents the water-bearer, a symbol of eternal youth and renewal.

LOCATION: Above the dining table.
SYMBOL: Known to be the thunderbolt carrier for Zeus – making the constellation a symbol of power and strength.

LOCATION: Above the kitchen area.
SYMBOL: Ares depicts the Ram. In Greek Mythology, the Ram represents kingship and authority.


This exquisite kitchen is designed to provide a 360° view of the Chicago skyline and allows one to entertain guests in an open plan. Whether our bachelor is mixing drinks or cooking dinner, he can engage his guests in conversation while having the city as his backdrop. The adjacent family room is casual for daily life, but still upscale enough to be used for entertaining guests.

The Master Suite is a robust combination of energy, romance, and recharging. The fitness room is designed to accommodate meditation and suspension yoga but also includes space to engage in energetic fitness training. Our bachelor needs a variety of solutions for his weekly health and fitness regime. In the bedroom, the bed is positioned so that it is facing outwards towards Chicago’s skyline. The moment our bachelor opens his eyes, he is greeted with a beds-eye view of the iconic city. Dapper black leather chairs are placed in a small reading area so he can relax in style. The Master bathroom includes a generous two-person shower while providing much-needed relaxation in a quiet soaking tub that overlooks the city.


To the right… Taking a right turn after entering the unit brings our bachelor and guests to a space designed with a more professional use in mind. The right half contains a large area to be used as a boardroom/ meeting room, with tables that can extend to seat 6-8 people.

This professional space also includes several smaller areas by the fireplace, which can be used to facilitate one-on-one conversations. A touch-screen TV center, which is fabulous as an information display during the work day, can also be used to provide multiple viewing options for guests when entertaining. During the night, our bachelor can host high-stakes poker games while viewing multiple sports games simultaneously. The finishes were chosen for the walls and furniture illustrate his soft, edgy and highly-intellectual personality.


This personal DJ Booth, featuring high-end audio components, provides the soundtrack for everything from wild late-night parties to quiet evenings spent listening to old favorites. A music lover’s dream.

On the far wall, we have a custom designed waterfall, fireplace, champagne bar combination, flanked by two backlit onyx walls. These elements all come together to create a truly unique and breathtaking statement. Relax by the fire with a glass of champagne in hand – you’ve earned it.

This multi-purpose area breaks down the barriers between a casual mid-day lunch meeting, and a cocktail hour turned late-night party.

Upstairs… The second level is replete with unique entertainment opportunities for both personal and professional lives. We have provided a wide open space where our bachelor can host a gathering of people and easily have it catered. The upstairs bar/kitchen area is designed to host a hibachi chef to cook for all of our bachelor’s guests- day or night! A virtual reality room is a highlight: our bachelor can host a VR presentation for business or personal guests. And for the late, late nights, a DJ booth can spark an impromptu dance party.

The real centerpiece of the room is a feature wall of water /fire/champagne. This custom-designed waterfall/fireplace/champagne fountain is visually striking and serves to create an inviting and comfortable environment. The waterfall feature makes guests feel relaxed, and the fire component makes them feel warm and welcome. Hidden behind layers of water and fire is a multiple port champagne fountain. Having a variety of champagne brands on tap will make anyone feel special! This wall is flanked by two backlit onyx walls

accented with artwork from the bachelor’s favorite gallery.

Simply breathtaking.


Dreaming of Design 2018 – Awake and Rising

Emily Mackie, Founder of Inspired Interiors, was one of the select showcase designers at the fourth annual “Dreaming of Design” event hosted by River North Design District and Chicago Luxury Beds. Best known for adding transformational value to people’s lives through her designs, Mackie has brought artist Sarah Raskey onboard to create a bedroom vignette titled, “Awake and Rising”, that emboldened women in a new and empowering way.

The centerpiece and backdrop of the installation will feature the imprints of the breasts of thirty influential Chicago women. The participating women come from different cross sections of life, having a wide array of accomplishments. Each woman’s breasts have been painted and stamped onto tiles of Maya Romanoff wallpaper to create a collage of unique pieces of art. After the showroom debut event, each tile from the backdrop collage was auctioned off with proceeds benefiting Susan G. Komen Chicago.

“I wanted to create a backdrop for the room that celebrates women that support one another, so I came up with something daring, beautiful truly unique”, said Mackie. “The wall will showcase breasts of different size and different shape, but most importantly the breasts of women that use their voices to foster positive social change.”

While the bedroom itself is a safe haven from life’s daily stresses Awake and Rising included a Worship Table. This area was meant to tantalize the five senses. From the ceiling hung greenery and gardenias for your sense of smell, the sound of running water from a nearby koi pond, a textured rug for meditating, a tea set to calm your nerves, and of course, the walls were covered in art.

In addition to the backdrop, the bedroom vignette featured a Hastens Classic Luxury mattress from Chicago Luxury Beds adorned with a living floral bedspread to illustrate the beauty of the group of women coming together. Other vendors featured in “Awake and Rising” were hand-selected by Mackie and come from a narrow market of female-owned furniture manufacturers or distributors, including Organic Looms, Holly Hunt, Gemini Builds It, Maya Romanoff and Pagoda Red.

Vendors for the Worship Area: Worship table (Pagoda Red), meditation rug (Organic Looms), Koi fountain (Pagoda Red), Artwork (Sarah Raskey), Ceramic Tea Set by Susan Messer McBride, and greenery by Roberto Gonzalez

Here is one of the prints created for Awake and Rising:

To see the rest of the prints please go to our Facebook page:

Together we raised $10,380!!!

Interior Design for Our Fabulous Furry Friends

Are pets an important part of your home life? You’re not alone. Not only is pet ownership becoming more popular among young people, especially couples, but more money, time and effort are being spent on our fur babies than ever before. According to the American Pet Products Association, Millennials tend to spend more on pampering their pets than their parents and grandparents ever did.

And, of course, along with the more elite status our dogs and cats enjoy in our lives comes the desire to elevate the spaces they inhabit in our homes, as well. In other words, gone are the days of ugly plastic crates, floppy dog beds and unsightly litter boxes on full display. In recent years, luxury pet design has found its place in high-end residences around the world. Some of the latest trends in upscale interior design include pet-friendly concepts such as mudrooms or larger laundry rooms with built-in dog-washing stations offering the latest ergonomic features for caring for animals of a variety of sizes. No more bending over the bathtub to suds up your pup! Now you can also banish sloppy food and water bowls from taking up valuable space on your kitchen floor. An ingenious solution: Cabinets with roll-out drawers that contain feeding stations conveniently placed at your furry friend’s height. After the meal, the drawers can simply be pushed back in and out of sight!

Another luxury pet-friendly design trend that we are absolutely loving is built-in beds and kennels. For smaller dogs or cats, leaving a space where lower cabinets would typically be creates a nesting space perfect for a pet bed that is out of the way of main foot traffic. If your pet requires kenneling, doors with screens can be installed and closed when necessary to ensure your pet’s well being.

Good design is about bringing friends and family together, including those of the fur-covered variety. Whether adding half-height pocket doors to create a stylish gate or putting in a doggy-sized whirlpool for canine workouts, you can feature stylish and functional places for your pets that celebrate their presence and prominence in the family.

Whether it’s incorporating pets, combining convergent aesthetics or reflecting your personality through your surroundings, Inspired Interiors designs spaces that are distinctly, definitively you. Browse through our Project Gallery to see some of our favorite designs and get in touch with us. We’d love to meet with you … and, of course, your pets.