Tuesday, April 9, 2013

district of chic: regan billingsley

The District needs Regan Billingsley.  And we’re so glad she’s coming home!

A native of Chevy Chase, Billingsley has been headquartered in New York for the past few years.  But thankfully she’s moving her design firm to the DC area, bringing with it Billingsley’s impressive supplier network from around the world (one thing our fair city often lacks).  With artisans on-call from New York to LA to Paris, there’s no project, large or small, that Billingsley can’t tackle.

Budget-friendly and a perfect match for the younger demographic, Billingsley’s motto is “fresh ideas for a happy home.”  She provides unpretentious, approachable, comfortable spaces.

Billingsley has her own blog, which she writes to help the younger crowd navigate the sometimes tricky interiors lingo and gives tidbits of advice for those who don’t have a clue about where to start decorating their homes – and how.

Full of helpful hints, Billingsley can tell you what’s important to buy – where to splurge on investment pieces and where you can skimp.  There’s a regular “Designer Weekend Series” on DIY solutions for home d├ęcor.  Billingsley also posts on events and local resources in the city.

She’s a pro – with a decade and half under her ever so chic belt – and professionally trained by the Pratt Institute.  So it’s no surprise that every space Billingsley designs is curated and well thought out.  

Billingsley strives to reflect client’s personalities rather than just creating pretty spaces: like the Brooklyn apartment she designed for a couple who owned an enormous collection of masks, which Billingsley quickly turned into the focal point of the entire space.

Billingsley also designs with an eye toward growing into your space – whether you’ll be living there for 6 months or 6 years.  It’s critical, she says, to “design in phases, at your own pace.”  You don’t have to rush to mediocrity, and you don’t have to spend a fortune!

Her design “role models” are Katie Ridder, Muriel Brandolini and Martha Angus.  All elegant and inspired designers who aren't afraid to go out on a limb – but can rein it in when needed.

Exciting news for Billingsley’s debut in the District?  A room in this year’s DC Design House – a boy’s room – that is a real knock-out.  Thick charcoal striped walls, a fresh and lively green rug and headboard, a refurbished antique schoolhouse locker, and photographs of a duck and a chicken make this space pleasing to both its intended occupant (a prickly pre-teen) and to his mother.  What a feat!

Billingsley is also setting up an online shop selling fair-trade goods, perfect accessories for all her client’s homes.  Making a difference through design!

ICDC plans to watch the Billingsley firm’s future projects and can’t wait to see the results.  You should too!

Don't forget to visit Billingsley’s room in the DC Design House this Spring.

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