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Publication Date: 2015-07-17

Design Insights

Miles Redd on His Everyday Muses

The ultimate decorator’s decorator infuses old-school style with punchy exuberance.

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Could there be a better last name for a man so identified with color? After working as an apprentice to antiques dealer John Rosselli straight out of college—followed by a five-year stint with designer Bunny WilliamsMiles Redd went on to found his own firm in 1998, crafting a signature look that revolves around a highly saturated balance of sophistication and whimsy. He served as the creative director for Oscar de la Renta Home for a decade, seamlessly translating its founder’s elegant sensibility from runway to lifestyle decor, and even in such elevated circles preserved his playful, down-to-earth approach. “When all is said and done and I am long forgotten, maybe someone will find this book in a dusty library—if such a thing still exists—and glimpse a bit of the pleasure my life has given me,” Redd wrote in the introduction to his 2012 volume, The Big Book of Chic (Assouline). Here, a few of his everyday muses, big and small.

1. Yves Klein Blue “So saturated that it becomes a neutral to me. It works with almost anything. I am obsessed with this color.”Flowerpot Pendant by Verner Panton; Yves Salt Cellar by LEIF.

2. Step Mini by Design House Stockholm “This step ladder is so useful. I use it every day and it always makes me happy. It really is [about] the simple things.”

3. Grilled Toast “Nothing is more sublime than bread drizzled with olive oil and sea salt, but the key is that it must be grilled. This is so easy to make.”

4. Baths “Particularly in my glass bathroom! It’s my return-to-the-womb refuge—nothing else compares.”

5. “I Wanna Be Your Lover” “A cover of the Prince song by Fenech-Soler. I play it on endless repeat. It’s about the sexiest thing I've ever heard.”

6. Straw “Especially in a grand setting. It’s so aristocratic-casual to have straw partnered with, say, a William Kent.”

7. Fire Island, New York “My spot to unwind and recharge. A mere two hours from Manhattan, it's a minimalist escape from robust city life.”

8. Avedon: Photographs, 1947–1977 “A tome to a kind of lifestyle that is still here but quite rarefied, and one that might soon be gone. I love that he chose to put Marella Agnelli on the cover. That impossibly long neck says it all.”

9. L. Becker Flowers “Larry [evokes] the sensibility of 18th- and 19th-century botanicals: everything feels like a rare specimen. I also love forced bulbs in winter. Nothing takes away the chill like paperwhites, hyacinths, or daffodils.”

10. Didot “Everyone’s favorite typeface has an enduring elegance.”

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