Get to Know : Heather Holcombe
Specializing in kitchen and bath design, Southern based designer Heather Holcombe helps transform visions into reality. We caught up with her during an insta live segment where she shared many of her best practices for designing a welcoming home.
Q : Where did your interior design career begin?
I thought i was going to be a computer engineer! That was the plan A and there was no plan B. I went to all the programming classes in college and within about six weeks I realized this was not what I wanted to do. My guidance counselor had me take one of those personality tests which helped me realize i should consider interior design. I went on to study it in school and started my career mostly in the kitchen and bath industry. I worked there for about 10-12 years before focusing on residential design.
Q : What did you learn from your Kitchen and Bath days?
Hardware was always such a special component in the kitchen, bathrooms and built-ins we were designing. It was that final piece. People are really starting to understand that it's important. Hardware is not just something we stick on at the end. It can make it all can come together!
Q : Does living in the South influence your work?
I grew up in Mississippi and now am in the Raleigh area so Yes! The south is more of a feeling to me - of warmth, gathering, and hospitality. Its important to be intentional when designing a home. In my childhood there were always people around and you wanted to make sure your spaces were accommodating. Aesthetically, I think of the Charleston blue ceilings or wicker pieces. Always some blue and white never hurts.
Q : Do you have a favorite room to design?
Each space has its own challenges. But I always enjoy designing the kitchen since it is the heart of the home. It’s a blend of functionality and design, trying to create a harmonious balance.
Q: Any best practices when selecting hardware?
Consider where are you installing the hardware. Choose styles that allows the piece (cabinets, furniture, etc) to function the way it is intended. Next determine if the hardware is practical for the destination. Pay attention to scale and projection, you never want to have hardware snag your pocket! After thinking about function, you can think aesthetically. Take metal finishes into consideration. Are you trying to match a light or plumbing fixture? You never want to make an isolated decision because you have a vision and need to know the steps to get there.
Q: How would you describe your aesthetic?
Modern Traditional. I love classic and timeless looks that appeal to most people. Clients want their interiors to stand the test of time. I like to focus on classical aesthetics but at the same time I don’t want them to feel fussy and tired. I work to create that balance where people feel like they can live in a space I have designed for years to come.
Q: You have two cats! Any tips about designing around pets?
Be mindful that they are there and be practical for spaces that has pets and kids. We don’t want the client to be stressed if a project gets damaged. I have learned that Sisal rugs are great for cats and they don't really get damaged. Bringing in practical solutions like brick floors in the mudroom and a dutch door so you can leave half of it open to make the pet feel like they are in the mix. I always want to make the home and design decisions work for the client.