Ep 06: Redefining Traditional Style with Gail Davis

Traditions aren’t universal, so traditional design shouldn’t be either. I'm chatting with renowned interior designer and fellow podcaster, Gail Davis as she shares how a predominantly white, Eurocentric definition of 'traditional' design is finally being dismantled.























Gail Davis is what I consider to be the industry’s Fairy Godmother - she’s constantly connecting designers with who they need to know. Gail and I have been friends for years now, as IDCO Studio designed and developed her website back in 2020. Since then, Gail has hosted me on her podcast and also attended Design Camp in Los Angeles earlier this year, allowing us to finally meet face to face. It’s an immense honor to get to host Gail on The Interior Collective and return the favor.


Gail studied at the New York School of Interior Design, and honed her craft, interning at two of New York City’s most prestigious firms—Bunny Williams Inc. and David Kleinberg Design Associates. Now having practiced for over 15 years, Gail is the Principal Designer and owner of Gail Davis Design, known for their concierge-level interior design services. Her projects have been published in House Beautiful, Elle Decor, AD Pro, Domino, and so many more. Gail is the podcast host of Design Perspectives and the resident webinar host for Schumacher three years running.



In this episode, Gail and I discuss:

  • The industry's misuse of the term traditional design

  • How BIPOC designers are redefining 'tradition'

  • Gail's process for vetting new projects

  • Avoiding a scarcity mindset when it's not a good fit

  • The benefit of showhouses for interior designers






An excerpt of my conversation with Gail Davis:


Okay, as a Black interior designer - how do you define traditional design?


GD: So traditional design for me is a very, I'm gonna say a very Southern thing. I'm trained classically. Yes. But I also grew up in a home where my family is from the South, my grandparents in particular, and going to my grandparents' home. It's very funny. I was just saying to someone, Southern people receive people as they enter their home, right? And there's a way that you receive them, you have the conversation with them. But when you walk into a home, traditional for me, it's just something about… it just feels like it's this warm hug. And as I like to say to my clients, like a hug from Jesus, where you just feel like you can just let your guard down. And that everywhere you sit is super comfortable. The food is amazing. The drinks are amazing. But the drinks and the glasses, everything, is done with love. That's the best way I can describe what traditional means for me.
























"The room has to have a soul and a lot of people miss that when they do their version of traditional."


- Gail Davis








I'm interested in how traditional design can be reshaped moving forward.


GD: Traditional is very different for everyone, and traditional can mean so much to each person and nationality. Like last night I was at dinner with my Italian friends, and it was a very traditional meal. And then it was also a very traditional setting and it stems back from the grandparents, the great grandparents, like the lineage. And I'll say for Black people, it's so funny that when we do traditional, it's like, ‘oh, that's so ethnic’. And it's like, no–it goes back to our lineage. It goes back to the way that we were raised, our grandparents being in the home, our great grandparents, things being passed down. And I think that traditional just needs to be opened up. When you say traditional, it's very Eurocentric, it's very European and it takes away from the person in front of you who has their own spin on traditional to bring to you and to show you how to make that your own.


I think that people have to be very open to it. I wanna see traditional mean traditional for that designer and what they're going to bring to the table. And not just me working with a white client, they have to understand that I'm going to bring a nuance of a traditional, what I know of, to their home and layer it in.










You have such a distinct and coveted way of layering personality into deeply meaningful and luxurious spaces - how do you keep things feeling fresh?


GD: I feel through color and through mixing high with low. I like to really mix it up and I just like to keep it fresh. Not with trends, because trends come and go and you'll get screwed with that. And you'll be like, why did I get that? I love a good custom bed with, you know, maybe a mirror from HomeGoods or something.








Show Notes


Mentioned in the episode:



Thanks for reading an excerpt of The Interior Collective Season 1, Episode 5: Redefining Traditional Style with Gail Davis. You can listen to our episode on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or access the full episode transcription below. You can follow Gail on Instagram and visit her portfolio of work at Gail Davis Designs.




PORTFOLIO CREDITS:


Design by Gail Davis Designs

 

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Episode Transcript



Anastasia 00:00:02

Hi, this is The Interior Collective, a podcast for the business of beautiful living presented by IDCO studio an

d I'm Anastasia Casey.


Today's topic–redefining traditional style. Something that has been weighing heavy on my heart lately. And I think it's time to just expand the conversation. I wanted to discuss reframing the concept of traditional interiors. What has predominantly been a white Eurocentric definition of traditional design is finally being dismantled with the recent showcasing of Black and BIPOC voices in their work in the industry. Traditions aren't a universal thing, so traditional design shouldn't be either. As we discuss the shift in traditional interiors, we'll also dig deeper into quality versus quantity of clients and how you can further establish your own definition of traditional style.


Anastasia 00:01:01

Today's guest, Gail Davis, is what I consider to be the industry's fairy godmother. She's constantly connecting designers with who they need to know. Gail and I have been friends for a few years now as IDCO designed and developed her website back in 2020. Since then Gail has hosted me on her podcast [Design Perspectives] and also attended Design Camp in Los Angeles earlier this year, allowing us to finally meet face to face.


Today it's an immense honor to get to host scale on the interior collective and return the favor. Gail studied at New York School of Interior Design and honed her craft interning at two of New York City's most prestigious firms, Bunny Williams, Inc, and David Kleinberg Design Associates. Now having practiced for over 15 years, Gail is the principal designer and owner of Gail Davis Design known for their concierge level interior design services. Her projects have been featured in House Beautiful, Elle Decor, ADPro, Domino, and so many more. Gail is the podcast host of Design Perspectives and the resident webinar host for Schumacher three years running. Gail. welcome. I am so glad to have you.


Gail 00:01:56

<laugh>. Wow. I sound amazing. <laugh>


Anastasia 00:02:00

You're amazing. That was a really easy intro to write actually.


Gail 00:02:08

I love it. I love it. Thank you so much for having me. This is going to be so much fun. You know, I’d do anything for you.


Anastasia 00:02:14

<laugh> I know you would, you are so generous with your time with me, and I'm so grateful for that. To those listening, this is actually our first recording. Gail had signed up first and I was super nervous and she coached me through all of the technical difficulties at the beginning. So we are now officially locked and loaded and ready to go. So let's go ahead and dive right in.


Gail, do you want to tell us a little bit more about your background and what work you have been doing on your own podcast Design Perspectives?


Gail 00:02:46

Yeah, so let me see. So I got into design after I was in the fashion industry and I was just burned out and I was like, I need something different. And I took one class at NYSID and it's so funny because everybody thinks design is so much fun–it was a class of 12 of us and by the time the first semester was done, it was down to two of us. I really fell in love with [design] because we bought our home and that's what really got my gears shifting into wanting something different. So I just did it. I interned for, you know, Bunny Williams. I didn't know who that was, which was quite hilarious for me not to know, but once again, I wasn't in the industry to know and it was just such a masterclass of design for me.


Gail 00:03:34

Then going from there to David, which was also, you know, Parish Hadley, but he was like the Hadley of the Parish Hadley. Yeah. And then the podcast came about me hanging out with two of my designer friends and we were out to dinner one night and they were like, ‘you just give such great advice. You should do a podcast’. I'm like, ‘are you kidding me’? And then I just went home and I was like, ‘okay, how do I do a podcast?’ and I just started from there. It's called Design Perspectives, but it's really taking on a life of its own because it's a little bit about design.


Just backtracking for a second. I also was asked or told ‘why do a podcast, there's so many out there?’ and I was like, ‘well, yeah, you're right. But everybody has their own spin on it’ and I was like ‘there's not really a podcast, a design podcast out there with a person of color leading it’ which is very different because there's a new guard I should say, or there's a new spin since 2020 of designers of color and being interviewed. And it's just super important that our voice is heard. I hope I said that right. <laugh>


Anastasia 00:04:51

Yeah. And not just that, but that your voice is the guiding voice, not just the responding voice.


Gail 00:04:58

Yeah. It's fun to have conversations with other designers of color and to talk about how we work with clients and how we're perceived. And then it's also fun… I've spoken to Hadley [Keller] editor of House Beautiful. And I've spoken to editor in chief Asad Syrkett of Elle Decor. And, you know, he's the first Black editor in chief of a major publication. And just to hear what he was anticipating and what it meant for him to step up, and then also to hear… I'm gonna be honest, the not so nice things that people said to me about, ‘well, you know, what's going on and why is he in charge?’ And I'm like, ‘well, why not?’. You know?


Gail 00:05:53

It's just sad that whenever people of color step up and they’re leaders–we're vetted differently. And we're questioned. Look at Justice Ketani Brown Jackson and how she's so qualified and the asinine questions that were being asked of her. And it's so funny that, unfortunately, anytime we're put in a position, we're asked these ridiculous questions and we're vetted and it's like a ‘sit back and let's see if they can handle it. And let's see what they're going to do’.


Anastasia 00:06:32

Yeah, absolutely. Well, if you are not already following Design Perspectives, it's gonna be linked in the show notes. We'll talk about it again later in the show, but let's go ahead and dig into some of the questions that I put together for you specifically around the concept of traditional design. So traditional design has a very black-and-white definition as far as what is widely accepted in the industry. As someone who was formally trained and classically trained in interior design, how do you define traditional design from that standpoint?


Gail 00:07:08

Okay. So traditional design for me is a very, I'm gonna say a very Southern thing. I'm trained classically. Yes. But I also grew up in a home where my family is from the South, my grandparents in particular, and going to my grandparents' home. It's very funny. I was just saying to someone, I said, Southern people receive people–enter their home, right? And there's a way that you receive them, you have the conversation with them. But when you walk into a home, traditional for me, it's just something about… it just feels like it's this warm hug. And as I like to say to my clients, like a hug from Jesus, where you just feel like you can just let your guard down. And that everywhere you sit is super comfortable. The food is amazing. The drinks are amazing. But the drinks and the glasses, everything, is done with love. That's the best way I can describe what traditional means for me.


Anastasia 00:08:08

I love that.


Gail 00:08:09

And it's not just a show. I see a lot of design and it's hollow. It doesn't pull you in, you know? The picture is there and it's kind of cold. It's very sterile. It's very black and white. It's very neutral tones. It's very cream colored. And I'm like, we live in color and I want to be pulled in. I want not just eye candy, but I wanna feel like I'm in that room. It needs to be a visceral reaction. Does that make sense?


Anastasia 00:08:47

Yeah, that absolutely makes sense. I think that there has definitely been a trend over the last few years for things to be much more layered–there's been a lot more color. And I just know that cyclically that's probably gonna be back on its way out, cuz things only last seven years in the industry before it goes back to being stripped down, super clean, super modern, and really minimal.


I love your take on how the spaces actually evoke a feeling. And it's not just about how things are put together. I love that so much. What did you learn about designing in school to take those traditional designs and actually make them into that


Gail 00:09:32

Space planning. I had this one professor that was insane about space planning. And she said before you think of anything else, before you think of making a pretty room–everything needs to work. And the other thing is also with Bunny, everything needs to be a workhorse. Not just to have an ottoman to have an ottoman. But that ottoman has to do double duty to hold books, it has to do double duty to hold booties, you know, people sitting on it, drinks, like whatever. It's funny that the space planning and color my color class was the most intense two classes. I always look back. That's the thing that I always draw from. Like I used to see color, like, you know, very, just like surface.


Gail 00:10:25

And then taking the class and having to paint the colors and the teacher would show us a blue and it's like, okay, make that blue. And then having to get the paint color to be the right color, you got to see the nuance of the color.



Gail 00:10:39

Which was so intense, but it was so refreshing because then you just didn't see that blue as a blue or that brown as a brown or that green as green. You got to see the layered… or you got to experience the layering of that color to get that particular color to really make sense.

Anastasia 00:11:00

Wow. That's amazing. I also went to art school, not for interior design, but I remember taking the color theory class and it was absolutely life changing. And suddenly, I mean, suddenly I'm that person–even looking at whites and I can look at 30 different whites and say that those are different colors. But to really gain an appreciation of, like you said, cooler tones and warmer tones and understanding what those undertones are and how that can really affect the depth and the richness of a space.


Gail 00:11:27

Yes. Just like adding in a pinch of black to it, it just changes it to a whole different color. And then also visiting museums–seeing the color now and really experiencing it from after having the color theory class,going in and now you're like, oh my God! Now you see why this painting makes so much sense or you're so pulled in because it's also the ground– the whatever colors on that wall it's pulling you in. And it's not up staging it, but it's just like pulling you in. And you're like, oh my God.


I love Farrow & Ball colors because they're so earthy and so tonal and they're just, I have such a visceral reaction every time I go into that store.


Anastasia 00:12:15

Oh, that's amazing.


So you had mentioned earlier how since George Floyd's murder in 2020, it's been trendy to have BIPOC designers, Black designers, Indigenous designers on interviews, et cetera. And I'm curious for you, how do you want the concept of traditional design in the future to maybe be redefined, to be more about that feeling like you were discussing and less about its Southern style and the traditional space planning or the traditional fabrics and wallpaper? I'm interested in how traditional design can be reshaped moving forward to be about other things than just the pattern combinations or nations or the canvases and tapestries or the upholstery that is so well known and associated with traditional design.


Gail 00:13:18

Well, it's funny because like you said, at the top of the show, traditional is very different for everyone, and traditional can mean so much to each person, to each nationality. Like last night I was at dinner with my Italian friends and it was a very traditional meal. And then it was also a very traditional setting and it stems back from the grandparents, the great grandparents, like the lineage. And I'll say for Black people, it's so funny that when we do traditional, it's like, ‘oh, that's so ethnic’. And it's like, no–it goes back to our lineage. It goes back to the way that we were raised, our grandparents being in the home, our great grandparents, things being passed down. And I think that traditional just needs to be opened up. When you say traditional, it's very Eurocentric, it's very European and it takes away from the person in front of you who has their own spin on traditional to bring to you and to show you how to make that your own.


Gail 00:14:38 I think that people have to be very open to it. I wanna see traditional mean traditional for that designer and what they're going to bring to the table. And not just me working with a white client, they have to understand that I'm going to bring a nuance of a traditional, what I know of, to their home and layer it in. And it's always so amazing that they're like, ‘oh my God, I would've never thought that’. Or, ‘oh my God, this is so amazing’.


I have a client who I redid their apartment. They had a designer before and when you walked in, it was very disjointed. Like it's an amazing 7,000 square foot apartment. And you come in off the elevator and go right into their home, but it didn't pull me in and make me wanna linger.


Gail 00:15:30 And it was funny. It was traditional–that old school traditional where, you put a table here, you put an ottoman here. But it didn't make sense. And ‘Oh, there's a corner. We need to put something in that corner’. And so she went off, her and her husband, to their home on the vineyard. And when she came back… She has the most amazing artwork–like it's insane. And there's this one where it's this wooden elephant head and it's called Elephant Ears and it has like the giant ears, but it's stunning. And it was next to the TV and it got lost. And so for me, I thought that when you come in off the elevator–that hallway, which it was just white, like, it wasn't anything amazing.


Gail 00:16:17 So I used this like amazing, not smoke embers, but it has that grayish tone to it. I had my art handler come in and we redid all the art. And when she came in, she was like, ‘um, we need to speak. I don't think you really understand how this should be’. And I felt really disappointed because it was absolutely amazing. That was like eight o'clock at night.


By midnight, she texts me and she goes, ‘oh my God, this apartment is amazing. What you did with the artwork is so…and I felt better about it. I said to Ben, my husband, I was like, ‘oh my gosh, she doesn't get it. She doesn't get it’. She has all this beautiful artwork and it needs to be done the right way. And the furniture hadn't arrived yet.


Gail 00:17:05 And so as she's looking through the next morning, she wakes up and she goes, ‘I absolutely love what you did here. My husband turned the corner, coming down the hallway, going into the living room’... And when you turned the corner, I had the Elephant Ears right there. So when you got off the elevator, that's the first thing you would see. And she was like, ‘oh my God, everywhere you put the artwork, it makes so much more sense’. In her office she was like, ‘my mind is blown because the way you did the artwork, it makes so much more sense’.


Anastasia 00:17:34

That is so cool. I love that you specifically called out your art handler and how you really put that as a focal point, instead of what Eurocentric traditional design has always been. It's like, here's a console table, something needs to go right over that. Then you're gonna get a bunch of orchids and layer it over the art, right on top next to…


Gail 00:17:54

Yeah. Like it all needs to make sense. And I think instead of going with the formula. I'll say this, RH has a formula right. It's the sectional with the cocktail table, the Ottoman in the middle. And they give you a swivel chair. But what about the rest of the room? What does that say? And so many people, and I call 'em decorattes or PP decorators where it's just paint and pillows. They don't think of the room in it's totality and that's one thing that is missed in traditional. where it's just like traditional ‘Okay. You put that there, you put this there. Okay. It makes sense’. But the room also has to have a soul and a lot of people miss that when they do their version of traditional. The room has to have a soul to it. And I think that's what really needs to be brought to the forefront of not just being traditional, like the swivel chair or the sectional, the sofa , but having the room really be nuanced, make sense, and having the people want to linger in that room. Not just entertain, but like really linger in the room and want to be there.


Anastasia 00:19:05

So you are in a beautiful historic neighborhood of Jersey. You work in the city, you have all different types of clients. How do you bring your clients' traditions or culture to their spaces? So you mentioned bringing a little bit of your own and you'll have this different perspective. You'll bring in and surprise, when you're working with a white client and they'll be like, ‘I never thought of that. And I love it’. How do you bring their own culture into their spaces?


Gail 00:19:32

I make them show me what needs to stay. And I really have a conversation with them about how they want to really live in the space, not just entertain cuz people buy homes and they're like, ‘well I'm gonna be entertaining’. I'm like, ‘oh sweetie, you'll entertain for the first year or two. And then you'll just never wanna invite people over to your house’, you know? And you'll have these big parties–like we used to have big parties in our home. like a hundred people, 150. Now it's small, intimate dinners, eight or less <laugh> and that's what it is. And so I get to the nitty gritty of how do you really want your house to feel? Don't tell me all the beautiful things, but how do you really want it to feel and what is important to you?


Gail 00:20:13

And I have them walk me through the house and they go, ‘this is from my grandmother, I wanna keep this’. Or, ‘my mom gave this to me. This is really special. Or ‘my aunt who I really loved who died of cancer, this was in her house and this is something important to me’. And so I weave that into what they tell me and what they say and what they really want to do. And I bring in their tradition and then I take it to the next level. When clients try to Pinterest me to death with stuff. And I'm like, I don't wanna see the garbage that you're showing me. You get one time to show me and really tell me. But then I want you to really step back and trust the process.


Gail 00:20:56

Because if you are tying my hands, then I can't do my job. Then why hire me? And so I make sure that they show me what's really important, and what they really love. And then I just sit back and watch because I'll come back again,and we'll have conversations, and I watch how they are in the house with their family. And I'm like, ‘okay!’--something clicks. And then slowly it clicks for me. It doesn't happen immediately all the time. You know, sometimes I have no clue but I'll figure it out. And then all of a sudden, something will happen and I'll just start brimming with all these ideas. Then I start sketching and then I start pulling a bunch of fabric and just like, oh my God, this room is really coming together. And then I remember the pieces because I have the pieces up on the wall in my office and I'm like, okay, okay. Okay. And then when I show them, they're like, ‘how did you come up with this?’ And I'm like it just started speaking to me, the space really started speaking to me.


Anastasia 00:22:02 One of the things I'm most proud of putting into the world is Design Camp. I teamed up with my good friend, Lindsey Borchard from Lindsey Brooke design to craft a business retreat that both supports and empowers designers with the tools and resources they need to elevate their business. But the best part always proves to be the incredible community formed along the way. It really is the most magical four days full of the best conversation, great food and actionable takeaways that leave you inspired and prepared to take your interior design business to the next level. If you're ready to invest in yourself and your business visit design-camp.co to learn more. Again, that's design-camp.co.


How do you handle when someone tells you, ‘these are the pieces that need to stay, this is how I wanna use the space’ and in your gut, you know that that's not true. And you're like, ‘I know that's not how you really live. I know that's not how you really are gonna use this space’. How do you handle shifting that mindset for them when you actually go to the presentation and you're maybe delivering something different than what they told you that they absolutely wanted.


Gail 00:23:09

Well, that just happened. <laugh> <laugh> It was very interesting because the clients are moving into the home, they're not there yet. And they're like, ‘well, we're gonna do this. We're gonna do that’. And I said, as a homeowner, I'm telling you how you think you will use this house, you won't



Gail 00:23:26 And it was funny because with the living room, the space planning, the way I showed it to them, they kept saying, ‘well, we need seating for like, you know, 8-10 people. We need seating for 8-10 people’. And I was like, well, you can get 8 in here. And so then the husband's like, ‘well, we want two sofas, two swivels, two this, two that. And I go, ‘it's not good. It's not gonna work’. And they're like, ‘well, that's what we want’. So then, you know AutoCAD, I showed it to 'em, they're like, ‘that's perfect’. And I'm like, oh my God. Somehow I got into a conversation later on during the week with the husband and I said, ‘okay, I have to be honest with you. You all don't need me, just go ahead and do it.’


Gail 00:24:09 He's like, ‘no, no, no. Yes we do’. And I said, ‘No, let me explain something to you. I'm never gonna photograph that room. And here's why–it looks like it's in a doctor's waiting room. <laugh> and he's like ‘what?’ and I was like ‘Yeah, the stuff you're picking is very funerary, Like I'm looking for a dead body. I feel like it's a funeral home. And they're like, ‘oh my God. Really?’ And I was like, ‘yeah. so either you're gonna trust me because I was referred to you, you seeked me out. So either you're gonna let me do it and make it amazing for you. Or we could just part ways now.


Anastasia 00:24:45 Right. You know what you want? So you just go do it. Don't get me involved in this mess.


Gail 00:24:50 Yeah. As soon as I feel like I can't take the picture, I'm like, ‘Oh, okay. Houston, we have a problem’.


Gail 00:24:56 And even with a client–I'm doing their project now in Maryland–I did the closet. We took over a bedroom and made it into a closet to make a part of the primary suite and how I had the doorway, she's like, ‘I don't like that. I want the doorway here’. And I was like,’ okay, so that doorway's only gonna be two feet’. ‘No, but that's what I want. That's what I want’. So between me and the architect, we drew it out several different ways and shows ‘no, no, no. This is what I want’. Right, so we did it. Framing happened, everything's done. And she's like, ‘oh, that door is way too small’. And I go, ‘well, that's what you have to live with now’. <laugh> I was like, ‘this is why you hire me’. And it's funny cuz now when we talk about things and they'll ask her something, she's like, ‘I'm deferring to Gail. This is what she does. She's the expert.’


Anastasia 00:25:48

Learned her lesson.

Gail 00:25:50

Yeah. And I was like, and for me, like you have to do that sometimes. Like the client has to be taught a lesson. And I don't mean to sound like bitchy saying that, but they have to learn and like go, oh, okay. You're right. I get it now.


Anastasia 00:26:07

Know, like that's such an important lesson. I wish everybody could get to it in your first initial meeting instead of <laugh> yeah. Three months down the road.


Gail 00:26:14

Yeah. And I'm very dogmatic and I will admit, I'm like, no, that's not happening. Like I'm very much that way to my clients. And they, they, they get it. And then after a while they're like, oh, okay, okay. Okay.


Anastasia 00:26:26

<laugh> so Gail, you have such an incredible ability to make what I feel it, our fairly formal rooms feel so cozy. And so inviting everything you do feel so Lux, but also like it's always been there and you can put your feet on the sofa. How do you bridge that gap? How do you make everything feel so next level, but also like you could nap on the sofa on Sunday.


Gail 00:27:01

<laugh> um, because it's how I live. And it's important to me. Once again, I hate hate when I walk into someone's home and it's a showcase and I'm like, it's a museum. And that's, that's another thing I say to my clients. You live in a house, it's not a museum like, oh, well we can't get that because of my child. We can't do this because of my child. I'm like your child. You need to teach your children to live with beautiful things. You need to teach your children to respect beautiful things. You need to understand that you live in your house. It's not a museum. You need to understand that you are going to spill a drink and you don't need to freak out. And um, your dog will throw up on your brand new sofa that you just got just happened. And that you're not gonna freak out that you're gonna clean it up.


Gail 00:27:51

And after it's all clean, it's still going to be plush and amazing and you can enjoy it. Um, I always tell clients, I was like, you need to be able to read and you know, read in that room, um, have conversations in that room, entertaining in that room. Um, eat in that room and, you know, excuse expression, you need to even have sex in that room. If you want to, like, your home is really where you, you should be living your best life. And it's a place where it should hug you and like make you feel really loved and just refreshed. And like, you can take on the world again, like you'll wake up and you'll be like, okay, when you leave the house, like, it's amazing. I also learned very on like picking fabrics and all, like, we go away on vacation. We spend all this money to stay at these best hotels and you know, fly first class.


Gail 00:28:45

Why wouldn't you do that every day for yourself? Right? Why wouldn't you live like that every single day. So the same Lux materials that you get at these hotels, you know, the linen, the bed linens and all, I do custom bed linens for my clients all the time. And I was like, this is what you should have for yourself. Like I pick the threads. I work with, you know, my clients on it. And with the company, the vendor, Casa Del Bianco, they're amazing. I've been dealing with them for like 15 years now. And why wouldn't you do that? Do that for yourself. Like I always tell clients, I'm like, no, we're doing custom bed. They're like, no. I said no custom bed line for you. We can get some stuff made for the other rooms too. And if you don't want, we can go somewhere else for the guest rooms and all for the kids. But for the, you know, the primary I'm like it's, um, you should have that. And so I do my best when I pick fabrics, I always make sure I pick the most amazing fabrics. And then, you know, I send them off to, um, you know, to one of my vendors who does like the Teflon coding on it. So it still is lush and all, but then you're also not freaking out a few spill stuff.


Anastasia 00:29:52

That's amazing. I know that you have such experience and authority on textiles and I think it's amazing. You custom make the bed linen. That's just like next level. I'm gonna have to come stay at your house. I'm just gonna invite myself over and be like, let me check out these custom bed, linens, get talking about


Gail 00:30:10

When you're done, let me know the size of your bed. I will get 'em made and you'll see, you'll see the difference. And even with the way, like you wash your bed linen, I use, um, I do regular wash, right. But then I also do like a little cap of, um, vinegar. And then I do a cap of baking soda and I put it in the wash. I'm telling you when you take it off and you put it on your bed, I always tell my clients, okay, you have to take a shower tonight. And I want you to Lu her. Here's a body scrub. I want you to use, like, I'm very crazy about it. And then I'm like, I want you to shimmy in, get into your bed limit. And every morning, like the next day after they do it, they're like, that was some of the best sleep I ever had.


Anastasia 00:30:51

<laugh> oh my gosh, I love that. I'm gonna start calling it a Gail bed. Now <laugh> like, after we've changed the sheets, I'm like, okay, we have our nightly routine sheets have been changed. This is how we have to do it. Gail said, so


Gail 00:31:02 <laugh>


Anastasia 00:31:04

So Gail, you were super well known in the old school design world. Um, but I don't know if you even realized how idolized you are by this new class of younger designers. How do you bridge traditional layered looks design with staying current? How do you keep things feeling fresh?


Gail 00:31:26

I feel through color, through mixing high with low and I, um, I don't know. That's so funny. I, I didn't know that anybody noticed me <laugh> oh,


Anastasia 00:31:40

Oh, they notice. They definitely notice. And if you haven't noticed Gail before you notice her now, trust me.


Gail 00:31:47

Um, I don't know. I like to really mix it up and I just like to keep it fresh with not with trends because trends come and go and like, you'll get screwed with that. And you'll be like, why did I get that? Um, but I love like a good, you know, custom bed line in with, you know, maybe a mirror from what is it, home goods or something, you know? Like you just,


Anastasia 00:32:11

I was like, Gail, tell me what the low items you get. Honestly, please tell me about this low. You do.


Gail 00:32:20 Okay. So the low is the, the really low for me is finding things on the street. I am notorious for finding furniture on the street and I'm like, let's get that, but we're gonna, I'm gonna get my guy to do it over with the most amazing fabric and let's see what we can do. Like, I literally will buy furniture for, like, I bought a sofa for a client, um, for $35. And we did it over in this like $400 yard fabric. And I had my guy reupholster it, but redo all the springs and everything. And you could not tell the difference.