Perhaps it’s the crisp fall weather, or maybe just the fresh start that accompanies the change of season, but I’ve been feeling particularly inspired in terms of design. I already touched on my newfound interior inspiration in the form of design books, when I shared a giant roundup last week. I’ve been saving and jotting ideas like crazy, and am welcoming this new wave of creativity! This year especially, I’ve been trying to support small businesses, artists, and designers, and it has been a couple months since I’ve shared a spotlight post highlighting beautiful design. Since we’re a bit overdue, I wanted to share a talented designer with you today… Christina Cole. Her work is inspiring, thoughtful, and perfectly balances masculine and feminine design elements. Click through to check out some of the beautiful spaces that fill her portfolio.
All images via Christina Cole and Co. by Shade Degges Photography.
Before we dive in and begin admiring these beautiful spaces, let’s get to know Christina. She’s located in Austin, Texas and has been designing professionally for around 12 years… before that, she was a design professor- teaching in Washington DC and Barcelona, Spain (cool!). She’s currently the lead designer at her firm, Christina Cole and Co. Of course you might also recognize her work from high-end print magazines, such as Elle Decor and Harpers Bazaar. Christina has quite the resume packed with design achievements and awards. After combing through her portfolio and noticing the caliber of work she creates, I’m not at all surprised. That dark black office, pictured above, is what my fall dreams are made of.
I noticed Christina has a way of creating beautiful over-the-top spaces in a minimalistic way. While her styling is typically minimal, it’s very glam… the “less is more” concept came to mind, which works so well with high-end building materials that act as the perfect backdrop. I also have to point this out- I’m predicting we’re going to see a lot more pedestals used as furniture and decor in the coming year. Last year everyone wondered what I was thinking when I rescued pedestals from the dumpster at Emmett’s work and styled them in our basement makeover. I’m going to say I was ahead of the trend. Haha!
I love the way the above and below spaces are layered, organic, and neutral. They’re both super warm and inviting, but also feel simple and sleek. I believe Christina has mastered the mixing of materials and uses her background in architecture to highlight form. It’s evident in these beautiful rooms!
I’m sure you’ve seen this shower floating all over the internet? It went viral on Pinterest and you better believe I’ve saved it a couple of times, myself. The louvered glass sections at the top of the shower are genius! I’m also enjoying the graphic, large format marble tile, the geometric floor, and the mixed metals. This is another prime example of Christina mixing feminine and masculine elements so well. All of her spaces feel very balanced.
I pulled the image below from Christina’s Instagram because the soft, sheer drapery stopped me mid scroll. Is drapery in the bathtub practical? No, but it sure does look beautiful when the soaking tub is not in use. What a clever way to style curtains in a bathroom. It’s very romantic looking!
A marble fireplace surrounded by intricate millwork is basically what my dreams are made of. While those are the two elements that immediately jump out in the space below- I also noted the hardwood flooring pattern, the rug texture, the woven leather ottomans, the ranunculus arrangement, and the modern sconces across the room. I really admire Christina’s way of juxtaposing traditional and modern design.
Part of me wondered if I was attracted to many of these spaces because of the classical millwork and architecture, but then I noticed some other images on Christina’s Instagram feed of upcoming projects that are minimalistic in terms of wall treatments, and I have to say- they’re equally as gorgeous… like the bathroom pictured below. If I had to guess the floating sink vanity material, my bet is on soapstone. It looks SO soft!
What do you think? Do you feel inspired after seeing some snippets of Christina’s work? She’s incredible! I think it’s fun to analyze aspirational spaces and figure out how that translates to our own home or preferred aesthetic. I guess that’s why I love being a designer- solving problems and creating beautiful solutions to create a well-loved, functional home. Deep design thoughts for a Thursday!
PeggiOctober 1, 2020 at 5:13 am
100% dead. (Not just mostly dead.) (Princess Bride, anyone?) These spaces are phenomenal; most seem to be from the same home, yes? The brass detail in the moulding and switch plate covers?! Talk about luxe. All that amazing marble?! That first bathroom image brings me tears of joy. And stop with that steam shower…with transoms?! I really want to find more angles of that kitchen. It’s a skosh stark for me, but the I adore the two different sizes of tile on the wall and the minimal cabinets. It’s funny that her style is definitely more minimal than I prefer, but I think the opulent materials and mix of modern and classical pieces has an appealing drama. Plus, gorgeous is just gorgeous!
Your pedestal comment may have solved a dilemma for me! I want to keep some plants out of kitty’s reach, but they need to withstand an accidental Joe bump. A heavy column should do the trick!
Thanks for the inspiration and solutions! Cheers to a lovely start to birthday month!💜🎉
SarahOctober 2, 2020 at 11:17 am
Haha!! Princess Bride, lol. I love it! I think you’re right- lots of these images appear to be from the same stunning home. So many luxe details to admire! I love the details you pointed out, and SO MUCH MARBLE. I totally agree- the styling is minimal, but I think the use of materials make it feel very dramatic and over the top… just beautiful. Ooohhh- a pedestal or heavy column may be the perfect solution for your fur babies. I can relate to Joe’s accidental bump- Crosby does a lot of those. Yesterday he crashed into my desk upstairs and my ginger jar came tumbling down. Argh. In terms of the pedestal, I feel like they’d be easy to thrift or build, too. Happy Friday!! Hope you have a lovely and fun weekend ahead. Cheers to October!! xo
Danna FOctober 1, 2020 at 9:55 am
GREAT Designer Spotlight Sarah! I can’t decide if I like her more because of her gorgeous designs or that she is here in our city! I had to check her out on insta….wow! The kitchen you featured just makes me melt with all the colors. Minimal but so soothing to the eyes. This is the colors that make my heart happy!
I’m with you on the pedestals…I want! The color in the bathroom has me just looking at it and feeling at ease.
Have a great weekend. I am off to my moms to celebrate her birthday and get away for couple of days.
SarahOctober 2, 2020 at 11:07 am
Thanks Danna! I’m so happy you liked this one :) She is incredibly talented. I’m guessing there are Austin designer show homes or parade homes… you should look into it next summer! It would be fun to tour the parade homes and see her work in person. Most of the well-known, elite designers participate, and they usually take place in the spring or summer months. I want more pedestals! I’m enjoying seeing more of those appear in my feed lately. Have a wonderful weekend with your mom celebrating her birthday. Hope you enjoy your little getaway and quality family time :) Happy Friday! xo
LaurenOctober 1, 2020 at 3:07 pm
For the love of millwork!!! Christina’s is blowing my mind right now in the very best way! I adore every single one of these rooms, but my favorites are the study, the fireplace room, and that gorgeous bathroom with velvety black counters…I think they HAVE to be soapstone Sarah! Such wonderful design! I’m really digging the masculine feminine contrasts in each room, but I love the sheen contrasts of the paint in the study. Goodness if I could have a room like that to write in…that room has to be what dreams are made of. Lol. Now I’m rambling! Thank you for sharing Sarah! Have a lovely pizza Friday Eve!
SarahOctober 2, 2020 at 10:54 am
Right?! That classical millwork is what dreams are made of. It’s incredible! I can’t get over that soapstone sink. We have leftover soapstone slabs from our kitchen, and when it comes time to renovate the powder room- that might be a great use for it! Good eye on the finishes in the study, Lauren. I didn’t even notice that! Happy Pizza Friday to you :) Hope you have a fun weekend ahead with your fam! xo