It’s perhaps no surprise that Atlanta-based interior designer Kerry Howard of KHM Interiors has figured out that oh-so-coveted balance of antiques and modern pieces. He is, after all, a son of the South, where tradition and storytelling are woven distinctively into everyday life.
A star of Bravo’s “Top Design” and HGTV’s “Design Wars,” Howard has developed a personal style that’s both layered and clean. “I love to surround myself with things I love, whether it’s family pieces or pieces I’ve collected while shopping for clients,” he says. “There are times when I find myself editing and switching things out seasonally, but all in all, I keep things in the same place to create familiar little pockets of interest throughout my home.
Consider the three giant antique Gothic window frames he discovered in a family member’s barn in Raleigh, North Carolina. His relative, a stained-glass artist, had removed the stained glass from the frames to rebuild them as part of his work renovating a church. “When I saw the frames, I fell in love and immediately envisioned them as mirrors,” Howard says. “I eventually built my home around these three mirrors. They will forever be part of my collection.”
So you can’t snag the eye-catching mirrors, but you can borrow some of Howard’s signature design moves when layering antiques and modern pieces: “Keep your paint color neutral,” he says. “It creates a blank palette to put your pieces against and lends a cleaner aesthetic with a more modern feel.” And for a true show-stopping design move, “find vintage lighting that creates a beautiful focal point in a room. Every room deserves a beautiful light fixture.”
What else does Howard think your home deserves? Find out by shopping the style-making southerner’s favorites on The HighBoy.
1. Mdina Glass Decanters | 2. Vintage Lucite 9-Bottle Wine Rack
3. Outdoor Armchair and Ottoman | 4. French Antique Bistro Table
5. American Faux Bois Mirror | 6. Mid-Century Modern Planter
7. Triangular Cement Planter | 8. Pair of Mid-Century Blue Ceramic Lamps
Images via Kerry Howard.