Designer Secrets: Michael Taylor Inspires James Huniford at Holiday House Hamptons
A close look at the room designed by James Huniford at Holiday House Hamptons suggests that he was keenly influenced by iconic interior designer Michael Taylor, whose work is shown above.As we have seen before, a strong grasp of the signature style of design greats from the past can be hugely inspirational when tackling an empty room.
Do you know Michael Taylor?He is most famous for his "California Look"which he developed in the 1970's. Founding his own firm in 1956, Taylor designed rooms and furniture till his death in 1986. Here are 5 elements typically found in his work.
5 Elements of Michael Taylor's Signature Style
1. He often worked in a neutral palette. Expect a lot of white.
2. A master at scale, proportion and editing, he famously said "when you take things out, you must increase the size of what's left." Look for over scaled furniture and accessories.
3. He is known for mixing rusticity with glamour by incorporating primitive elements of nature into his rooms. Think trees, rocks, ancient clay pottery, artifacts, fossilized stone, wicker, straw carpets and the like.
4. His use of light led him to create rooms with a sense of airiness to them. He was not heavily into window treatments.
5. He almost always included spherical shaped pillows (they look like beach balls!) on his upholstery.
James Huniford's Living Room at Holiday House Hamptons
So let's take a look at James Huniford's living room at the 2014 Holiday House Hamptons to see how he channels Michael Taylor.
Yep there is a spherical pillow (dead giveaway) , white sofa, tree, organic, over-scaled, live edge wood coffee table, fossil, ancient ceramic, giant piece of art and no drapery. Even the unique swing has a sense of California playfulness.
As many have said before, and as James Huniford illustrates in his room at Holiday House Hamptons, the style elements pioneered by Michael Taylor are lasting and remain open to fresh interpretation almost three decades after he died.
"When in doubt, throw it out." -- Michael Taylor
Most images of Michael Taylor's work from the book Michael Taylor Interior Design by Stephen M. Salny. I highly recommend it if you want to learn more about him. Photographs of James Huniford's room at the 2014 Holiday House Hamptons by Lynn Byrne.