NO BREAKDOWNS HERE: Warren Wyatt, Nana Kersh Winters, and Rick Rozas (from left to right).
Designers on the Verge
[ Of a breakthrough, that is ]
Definitely no nervous breakdowns here. These three up-and-coming designers don’t have time for anything so trivial. Warren Wyatt, Nana Kersh Winters, and Rick Rozas are far too busy forging their unique styles, turning heads, and wowing clients. Don’t hate them because their combined design IQ surpasses what you scored on the math section of the S.A.T. (even on the third try). Start the new year by resolving to redirect your genius envy into admiration, emulation, and inspiration. If you must, place the magazine under your pillow and learn by osmosis. Whatever works.
After spending nine years working for a newspaper, Wyatt has a new beat now: interiors. Though he possessed architectural aspirations as a wee child, it took him a few years to surrender to his design destiny. Wyatt first sharpened his pencils designing restaurants for Ron Guest before cub reporting for Richard Trimble & Associates. In the last year he opted for freelancing, and now he’s scooping his colleagues with his classic, soft-edge contemporary, singularly poetic décor. The result is a frenzy of residential projects that will most certainly attract the paparazzi: two homes in Preston Hollow and one on Strait Lane, a Buena Vista townhouse, two homes in East Texas, and one in Oklahoma. And he’s just getting started. Where will fate lead him next? If Warren’s got anything to do with it, to more prized projects, exotic travel, and his own personally designed furniture and fabric lines. We suspect they will most likely be a reflection of the mood of his beloved hometown of Jefferson, Texas: quiet, clean, and idyllic.
Wyatt made the most of this small Uptown townhouse by focusing on masculine
sophistication. He commissioned Matt Sunderman to create a reproduction of Picasso’s “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon,” with a twist. Instead of women, he requested the painting be men. Wyatt’s considers his “element of surprise” necessary in every design.
“I like to pair beautiful French, English, and American pieces with a contemporary use of color and materials. I think this allows the beauty of a fine piece of furniture to shine.”
HIS FAVORITE THINGS:
Rogers & Goffigon fabrics, for their linen velvet paired with silk that makes for an intriquing combination… Nick Brock Antiques, for Nick’s great eye, for period English and Continental antiques, and his accessory selection… East & Orient, for the back room, a.k.a. the “back stage.”
HIS CLIENTS CRAVE:
Clutter-free, pared-down rooms that aren’t overdone… Fresh, new colors… Downsized homes… Vendor invoices (no secrets here!)
“My dream project would be clients who had a fabulous art collection and a contemporary wooden house in the mountains, and who wanted to mix in fine, period antiques. And they would do everything I suggested.” –Wyatt
NANA KERSH WINTERS
The interior design world almost lost this southern beauty to the fashion industry. Winters began her academic career at TCU, seeking the runway’s bright lights. When she realized she might end up designing cowboy boots for Justin, she returned to her home state and took full advantage of the University of Arkansas’ exemplary interiors program. Justin’s loss was our gain. Nana made her Dallas design debut eight years ago, and now she’s vice president of Schooler, Kellogg & Company after working with owner Ann Schooler Kellogg for a little more than a year. Their select client base allows her to work on sumptuous residences in Dallas’ most exclusive neighborhoods (the Park Cities, Preston Hollow) and high-end vacation homes with enviable locales (Rancho Santa Fe, Sun Valley). Though she’s usually too busy working for her clients to take in the sights, she does find inspiration on her European jaunts. Winters’ haute couture du jour? Eighteenth- and 19th-century Swedish antiques in the Gustavian manner.
“Classic design with an eclectic mixture, incorporating special finishes, antiques, and textured fabrics to create unique and livable spaces.”
HER FAVORITE THINGS:
Cortina Leathers, for the most amazing textured leathers… Rose Tarlow, for hand-screened print fabrics and supple leathers… The Mews, for beautiful antique decorative accessories.
Kitchens and family rooms opening to one another for easy entertaining… Dedicated
fitness/exercise rooms… Scaled-down primary residences for the opportunity to splurge on lush vacation homes.
“I’d love to have the opportunity to refurbish an antebellum Southern estate, along with a client that truly appreciates the history of the residence.” –Winters
What can’t Rick Rozas do? This native Louisianan and superman of the design industry played with the big boys – Bill Blass and Mark Hampton – when he was just a newbie, an experience that inspired him to open his own doors early on. He soon found balance forming alliances with other talents while continuing to create marvelously diverse interiors on his own throughout the United States and Mexico, many of them in the once-in-a-lifetime category. From a luxurious soft contemporary in Preston Hollow to innovative historic lofts in Paris, Texas, to an ever-evolving – yet highly functional – renovation-turned-ground-up construction project for a family in Austin, this design whiz can do it all. Oh, and did we mention the latest addition to his résumé? A collaboration with hotel designer/restaurateur Alice Cottrell (whose Deep Ellum restaurant Local is a local favorite) on his San Jose, California, Hotel Montgomery, where he combines the classics with pieces from Bay Area artists.
“My signature style is clean, simple, elegant, functional, and personal with a profound sense of calm.”
HIS FAVORITE THINGS:
Brent Comber, for fabricating spectacular furniture out of old fallen trees found in the Vancouver area… Lucian Rollin, for timeless elegance… Knoll, for their mid-century tables and chairs.
“Macassar ebony seems to show its face in nearly every job I do. The color, warmth, and beauty of the wood are awe-inspiring. Two of my favorite projects are ones in which I’ve finished entire rooms and kitchens with the material.”
HIS CLIENTS CRAVE:
Great sound systems in the family room and kitchen and doing away with media rooms… Built-in coffee systems (Miele is my favorite!)… Very energy-conscious homes with alternate power sources.
“A fantasty job would be a 5,000-square-foot contemporary home on the ocean with an incredibly generous client who has a great big budget and will leave all the decisions to me.” –Rozas