Photography by Amy Bartlam | Design by JDP Interiors
From time to time, I love sitting down with other designers, learning about their past, their work, design process and inspiration as it always inspires me. Today, I was lucky enough to sit down with Joyce Pickens from JDP Interiors and be able to share her amazing work with you all! What I love about the work of Joyce Pickens is that it is a mix of modern and traditional elements which creates a blend of timeless and unique designs. Today, Joyce Pickens will be sharing her top 5 tips for transitioning your home for the fall.
Kathy Kuo: Hi Joyce! Do you mind telling me a little bit about yourself and what your journey was like in becoming a designer.
Joyce Downing Pickens: Hi Kathy! Well I’m from Texas, but came to LA for design school, which is something I had always been interested in but thought it would best be a career for later in life. After school I worked for Nathan Turner for a year and when I left there I sort of just fell into starting my own business. Beginning with friends and family, then moving onto larger projects. There were definitely years of scraping it together and making very little, but it made my first big job all the more sweet!
Tip 1: The easiest and most cost effective way of transitioning your home to fall is to add in pillows and throws!
Go for pillows in autumnal colors, plaids, cashmere, and anything that you personally find to be cozy. As for blankets, nothing says fall like cozying up by the fire upon that first burst of cold weather.
KK: When did you first launch/start JDP Interiors? Where are you based? Where do you offer your design services?
JDP: I first launched JDP Interiors 4 years ago in Los Angeles, where I am still based. We offer design services primarily in Los Angeles but have also done projects in Texas, San Francisco, and New York. And always open to projects around the country!
Tip 2: Change out your florals!
Something as simple as floral arrangements can really transition your space. I really love berry branches, greenery, wheat bundles, pampas grass, eucalyptus etc.
KK: How would you describe your design style? What makes JDP Interiors?
JDP: I hate to be pigeon-holed into one design aesthetic as I feel it’s the mark of a good designer to be able to move seamlessly between styles, but I would definitely say I try to seamlessly meld traditional and modern while leaning towards earth tones and materials high in texture.
KK: How would you describe your design process from conception to completion?
JDP: I always start with having clients do their homework and pull Inso photos (whether that’s creating a folder or showing me Pinterest boards). From there I go room by room and create design boards and/or a computer generated mockup of each room. As I go I try to ask clients what they think of the direction, whether that’s showing them a sofa, or the whole mockup and making tweaks to the schematic. We nail it down to where both parties are happy with the end result.
Tip 3: Changing out your lighter colored sofa for a green or velvet option will create that instant fall vibe you’re going for.
KK: Where do you draw inspiration from?
JDP: Everywhere! Either traveling, visiting a new restaurant or even an old building. I find tons of inspiration from Instagram as well. You can sort of travel all over the world while siting in the comfort of your own home! I try and save anything that inspires me and reference back to them when I’m in the design phase of a project. Pinterest has sort of become generic and overrun so Instagram is my go-to discovery zone at the moment.
KK: Do you have a favorite space to design?
JDP: Yes! Dining rooms! They can be surprisingly easy to mess up so I like the challenge. The dining room is its own room, so you don’t have to play by the same rules as the rest of the house. For example, an open living room / kitchen area has to flow together as one space so there’s a lot of balance to content with. But, the dining room can beat to it’s own drum a little bit. 🙂
Tip 4: Change out your coffee table! A burlwood coffee table is a great way to node towards trees, fall and fireside vibes in a modern way.
My Top Coffee Table Picks:
KK: From your portfolio, it looks like you work with a lot of earth tones and organic materials. Do you find this to be true for most of your designs? What are some tips for achieving this look?
JDP: Yes! Even in the most modern spaces I find it so important to incorporate something organic. It ground the room, adds interest and texture, but also something unexpected to the eye. For a modern space I tend to gravitate towards something along the line of a cane dining chair or bench. It still has a contemporary feel while adding in texture. In more traditional spaces, try adding a vintage rush bench to the end of a bed.
KK: What is success for you as a designer? What is a successful project?
JDP: A happy client and a well executed design scheme! While there is always the dream of a client who lets you do whatever you want… it’s not the usual case. So it does become a very collaborative process. This often takes the design somewhere I wouldn’t have thought of on my own, so that’s always fun! The final end result and final professional photos always are the entire process worth it for me.
Tip 5: A simple addition of a rustic dark wood armchair will immediately warm up your room for fall, and winter!
KK: Name one designer active in the industry right now who inspires you.
JDP: Clemenets Design. I love their use of rustic antique and organic forms with modern and livable sensibilities.
KK: What is the biggest challenge you face as a designer? How do you attempt to solve that challenge?
JDP: Clients. People come to you for an area of expertise that they don’t specifically have. But it is also their home and they, understandably, want their say in the design. Very often you don’t get to be as creative as you would like. At the end of the day, you are in customer service and making the client happy is always the number one priority. Even if it means putting their grandmother’s old quit right above the fireplace..
Get the Look:
KK: Is there anything else about JDP Interiors we should know?
JDP: We are hoping to expand into furniture design and manufacturing very soon! I can’t tell you how many inquiries we get about our custom made pieces. We’re hoping to launch a soft opening of our custom items online, and see where that takes us and gauge the response. Lighting design may also be in our future!
KK: How exciting! I can’t wait to see what’s in store for you and and the Joyce Pickens brand!