Tamara Stephenson Interior Design; root cellar designs, LLC

Tamara Stephenson Interior Design; root cellar designs, LLC
reach out to our team for an interior design consultation or to see our collection of wallpaper and fabric sold to the designer trade, rootcellardesigns@gmail.com

Thursday, August 21

Back To School Favorite Designs: Zhuzhing Up College Kid's Apartment Utilizing BKING DESIGNS' Pillows

A Gorgeous Pillow Collection, 
Inspired By The Wild Beauty Of Nature 
And Taken From The Plains Of Africa: 
BKing Designs Delights!
"We have an absolute passion for all things African. The people, the animals and the bush. Within this range, we have developed a cultural series and an animal series, depicting what is quintessential to the African life and bush."
Bridget King
As we pack up our cars and make plans to fix-up our daughter's new apartment at Cornell University, I am taking stock of some of my favorite new designs.  Fresh, innovative and ready-made for young college kids who have their finger's on the pulse of the innovative, I need to keep my designs stylish yet on a bargain budget.  We have lots planned to transform these girl's apartment.  This crew is interested in animals and nature and they ride on the Varsity Cornell Equestrian team, plus they are animal science majors in the Agriculture School at Cornell.  Additionally, the apartment needs a little help so we will paint it, add shelves, inject a little light, and although nothing overly big it will be just a little "zhuzhing" up to make it stylish and comfortable.  All summer long we've been repurposing antique and vintage pieces, plus we are bringing in unique art, great paint colors, some removable wallpaper, decorative objects and bargain furniture pieces.  

BKing Designs came onto my radar, and I am smitten.  Today, let me share with you these fresh designs, a mother-daughter team (Bridget and Katie King) bringing together an architect's graphic vision, travel, the fashion industry and pulling from all corners of the globe.  All of the pillows in the collection enticed but for our project these sepia tone animal photograph pillows taken from the wild plains of Africa added just the right amount of spice with nature.  
Today we loaded these beauties into the car
from the OUR HEART collection...
find @bkingdesigns on Instagram too!
Learn more about BKing Designs 
through my interview with Bridget King: 
1. Can you tell us about the sepia tone pillows?  We have four gorgeous ones for our apartment design, and we’d love to hear about how you came to make them.  I not only love shooting imagery wherever I am, but I also love the thrill of the 'download' - from camera direct to my Lightroom program on my PC - to explore & create the full potential of each final image. I just love the magic of 'playing' with each tantalising component Lightroom has to offer. The treatment of each image has no formula, no method, it is unrepeatable making every image unique, like a digital 'painting'. In this case, after a lot of fun and play, I chose sepia tones as the final manipulation to unify the animal shots. The neutral colour allows these pillows to sit easily in a variety of interiors. 

2.  Please share a story about one of the animal pillows and how you came to photograph them?  The 'topi'. We encountered this amusing little guy in Kenya's Masai Mara.  With really great eye sight and hearing, he spends hours standing on his own dung pile, constantly on guard protecting his territory and his harem. Other herd species hang out near by, waiting for his alarm calls, ready to scatter when danger is close by. This topi was very close to the edge of the dirt road (and me,) not at all alarmed by my presence. He looked at me straight in the eye as if I was just an every day visitor in his life. A magical moment. I love the detail - flies, a blade of grass hanging from his mouth - a moment frozen in time as if I had caught him out in the middle of something significant!!

3. What does the company name stand for?  We mulled over our brand name for a very long time - trying to be savvy, trying to be smart. In the end, we felt simple was best. B King being short for my name Bridget King and we felt 'Designs' conjured up infinite future possibilities and paid homage to my former life as an architect.

4. How is it working with your daughter Katie?  
How do you communicate about a new collection?  Katie has been my main supporter from the time I first floated the idea of using my digital imagery 'somehow'. It was she who has chosen the 'look' of our brand, the campaign images, the packaging, the final imagery. I trust her judgement implicitly. I was lucky because the early stages, the branding, the detail was all done in Melbourne before Katie moved. Now, with the internet and this nifty virtual office we have, our work can be done from studio to studio remotely and of course, work gives me a very good excuse to catch up face to face regularly throughout the year!! New collections - easy - Dropbox! Katie has a very strong visual sense and I rely on this skill to direct each new idea.

5. Where would you love to see your pillows next?  A favorite store and in what city/country?
I would love to see the collections represented in high end gallery shops like the Saatchi Gallery, London or MoMA, NYC. Each collection would probably do well in its country of origin. It is early days, but I view the pillows more as pieces of art - limited editions, each with their own unique story to tell. They are 'signed' and individualized with my story printed on the backs.

6. Have you considered making those designs on other items including curtains/furniture/upholstery?  It is funny you should ask this, as initially my idea was to print my imagery onto leather (pillows & bags). This proved a virtual impossibility in Australia & outrageously expensive, so for now I have ditched that idea but I do have a passion to digitally print onto high quality gold rimmed bone china decorative plates. Katie is keen to explore bed linen & high end upholstery fabric. We have yet to further investigate - one step at a time!!

7. How has your architecture background played into the designs?  The beauty of having architecture as a life long discipline is that it has been a marvelous educator in 'opening my eyes' to not only the built environment but to all that surrounds me and us. I am always 'looking'. I am a keen observer, very curious & maybe I see things differently. Being an architect has most certainly influenced how I take shots especially how 'my chosen icons' interplay within the context of their immediate environment. I like to have fun, I like to search for the hidden. I love design and my imagery is about composition, about design and layout.

8. How has your daughter Katie's fashion experience complimented the company?  Katie is stylish. She understands style. She has had a lot of experience in what is 'right now' saleable in the fashion industry! What model has the 'look' and why. What each model has to give or is suited to. High end fashion and art are one and the same thing. She understands high end fashion. She is very visual, a necessary component to understand her industry & mine/now ours!  She is discerning - a valuable commodity when it comes to choosing imagery.

9. Which pillow is your favorite?  A very difficult question. I can't say I have one favourite. I probably have favourites in each  collection.  Our Back Yard - the Kelpie for what he represents to me being an Australian & the colour.  New World - Bucking Bronco, all American, I love the colours & the pristine white sky - he proved to be very challenging to produce from the original.  Our Heart - the Topi for reasons I have explained.  The Exotic - Boy, just so unexpected, his dear little face! Priceless.  Blue Dreaming - has to be Fronds Two - speaks to me - Bora Bora.  Sophisticat - maybe the Nun - so pure, so respected, crazy street - she glides along to where?

10. Is there a new collection/genre you're planning? 
Absolutely. We already have imagery ready for production - we are adding to the Sophistcat collection - strong, fun UK & Spanish images. Plus Sydney Harbour. I am planning a sojourn to your fair state of Texas early next year looking for more USA icons, very excited, researching that right now. We love the ability to grow the Collections & of course, it gives me an excuse to travel.

A peek at some of the other varieties of interesting, 
artist styles all taken from travel, photography and fashion.  
 A favorite from OUR BACKYARD collection, 
a series inspired from the owner's native Australia
 sampling of 
The New World Collection
sampling of 
Sampling of
Blue Dreaming

Sampling of
The Exotic

Stay tuned for more about BKing Designs
in the BACK TO SCHOOL project profiled here soon.

Happy Nesting 
XO Tamara