Whether you are downsizing, upgrading, working on a second home or merely tired of an old look, consider consulting an expert. Interior designers can help you sort through what you have, find fabrics, wall and window treatments and locate just the right pieces to make a new or old space look great. They see beyond momentary trends and know how to make a small space look larger or a large space more inviting. They also know how to add oomph to wow your guests. Their first step, without exception, is to meet to discuss wants, needs and lifestyle. What comes next depends on the interior designer you choose. The following five designers and groups have all been featured in home and interior newspaper sections and magazines but have different approaches.
EDYTA & CO.
Park Ridge, IL 60068
Since going out on her own as EDYTA & CO. in 2009 after associating with other design groups, Edyta Czajikowska has been featured in newspapers and interior publications. One of her projects has been nominated as "Best of the Year" by Interior Design Magazine. Project hallmarks are clean lines and a chic fresh look. She aims to elevate a client's way of living with an aesthetic eye and a sense of style that is also comfortable. Czajikowska's approach to clients with a traditional bent is to meld classics with modern for a warm, serene look.
Tina Dann-Fenwick Interiors
301 S. Ridge Road
Lake Forest, IL 60045
Tina Dann-Fenwick likes to incorporate a client's personal pieces so that the project, whether a room or house, reflects the client, is comfortable and not over coordinated. Her approach is to listen to clients' aspirations and help them explore avenues they might not have considered. Because she sees interior design as a science as well as an art form, she combines problem solving with finding beautiful pieces. Her projects are mainly on the North Shore and Chicago but she also does second homes elsewhere and has projects in San Diego and London.
Susan Fredman Design Group
350 W. Erie St.
Chicago, IL 60654
The strength of the Susan Fredman Design Group is that its 20 members cover the design spectrum from classic to contemporary, second homes and new construction to condo and single-room spaces and include specialties such as Leed (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification. Depending on the project and client's needs, designers work one-on-one, as a pair or as a collaborative group. In business for 40 years, Fredman is based in Chicago but also has second home offices in Michigan's Harbor Country and Wisconsin's White Fish Bay area.
Jeff Lawrence Interiors
109 E. Scranton Ave.
Lake Bluff, IL 60044
After consulting with a client on day-to-day needs and lifestyle, Jeff Lawrence interprets those ideas to create a design that is comfortable for the family and inviting to guests. When working with a client, he talks about architecture, natural and artificial light, scale, finishes and textures. Although current trends may be taken into consideration, he believes a project should be timeless and not dated. His clients tend toward classicism and traditional but when they want something contemporary, he will bring in classic touches for warmth.
Anthony Michael Interior Design
2129 W. Webster Ave.
Chicago, IL 60647
TV viewers who like HGTV's makeovers and may be too busy to participate in every design step will like Anthony Michael's approach. After consulting with a client on needs and vision, he does what he calls the "Cinderella Installation." It is an all-at-once reveal. He says he does not take clients shopping but meets with them to determine styles. Then he designs the project and presents it as a whole including a full budget analysis.
Jodie Jacobs is a veteran journalist who loves writing about Chicago, art, theater, museums and travel. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.
for more features.