“Take the time to collect pieces that reveal you, and take care of them,” says designer Esther LaVonne. “They will look great in almost any area you reside in.” She comes across the very same challenges as other homeowners, but does her best to employ her personal style philosophy within her modern tri-level at the heart of downtown Austin. “Mix it up” She states. “It’s all about creating different layers within the space through various styles of furniture, bold color palettes and one-of-a-kind pieces”
at a Glance
Who lives here: Designer Esther LaVonne and her Boston terrier Jovie
Location: Five blocks from downtown Austin and Town Lake. “I love that I can jog in the mornings and wander into concerts in the evenings,” she states.
Size: 1,300 square feet, 1 bedroom, 1 bath
Designer/Builder: Dean Van Landuyt
The living space has a very open design, with windows on all three walls lending views of downtown Austin. LaVonne’s aesthetic is brilliant and funky, very similar to her favourite designer, Los Angeles-based Kelly Wearstler, whose style is classic, edgy and hot all at one time.
LaVonne has always known she wanted to own a design firm. She states, “I literally called a lady that owned her own firm 12 times right when I graduated so that I could begin working for her and learning the ropes. Three decades after I was prepared to begin my own firm.”
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The contemporary black cone alloy ottomans from the corner are from outlet decor stores. The ottomans were originally green and blue and LaVonne gave them a coat of green paint to match her decor. Her color placement is crucial in creating the space.
If LaVonne can change anything about the home it is to bring a balcony. “The big windows from the living space are fantastic, but it could be so good to slide them open as a way to work outside once in awhile”
Since LaVonne occasionally works out of home, having a coordinated and comfortable workspace is vital. One of her main design problems when moving in was figuring out which corner of the room could be her office area. “I wanted to get a opinion when I worked and I also wanted customers to have the ability to socialize with me if they stopped by,” she states.
The black-and-white Marilyn Monroe art print was updated with a red terry fabric mat when LaVonne transferred into her new home. Formerly, the crimson was hot pink.
The black leather upholstery for the Louis XVII seat for her desk is one of LaVonne’s biggest splurges for her home. Her dream piece for the house: “Certainly a daring, thick silk black-and-white striped Madeline Winerib 8-by-10 area carpeting. Those are the kind of rugs you maintain forever and move on to your kids. They’re beautiful handmade masterpieces.”
The coffee table in the living room holds many interesting pieces, giving guests a glimpse to LaVonne’s taste. “My personal style is influenced by bright colors, graphic patterns, ferocious lines and anything one-of-a-kind or unique,” she states. The red coffee table is from LaVonne’s Electric Expression line and the “Live,” “Work, “Produce,” prints are also LaVonne originals.
On choosing her color palette she states, “I have always loved red but I especially love the tones of colours in fashion recently are extremely intense. This can be exemplified in the color-blocking styles you see on road attire. The red I selected is a bright cherry vintage red and works nicely with all of the graphic black bits I have.”
LaVonne shares her space with Boston terrier Jovie. Jovie is as warm and welcoming as the home. The open area and light wood floors are perfect for a dog his size.
The golden yellow velvet loveseat is a Craigslist treasure LaVonne located in San Antonio. Its bold primary color and diamond tufting design serves as a focal point and sets the tone for the space.
The dining room is clean and inviting. The seats were a Craigslist find.
If LaVonne were to have any four people over for dinner she would have: Oprah Winfrey, Lady Gaga, Hillary Clinton and Iyanla Vanzant. This creative and unique group reflects the basis of her property.
Lamp, dining tabe, storage containers: Ikea
The next floor of LaVonne’s residence includes her bedroom and bath, and feels like a studio area. The big leaning mirror beside the sink keeps a clean and modern feel.
Although LaVonne loves her home, the one space she would revamp is the bedroom, which now serves as both a sleeping and music space. “I need a hot headboard and enjoyable nightstands. I’m working on a separate music space,” she states. “I want my bedroom to sense more amorous than just a place to generate music.”
Bedding and pillow covers: Ikea
The black armchair alongside LaVonne’s colorful closet fits the leather upholstered seat utilized as her desk chair on the next floor.
LaVonne’s kitchen cabinetry matches the light-colored wood tones from the hardwood floors throughout the space. Lots of natural light streams through the area, with windows on all sides offering views of downtown Austin.
This is LaVonne’s modern exterior. Even though she’s settled into her home, she states, “I shall really should change some of the artwork and pillows soon as my design eye becomes accustomed to details very fast. I need new fun pieces around me to inspire and maintain my job living!”
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