My Top 20 Interior Design Idols: Part Two

thom filicia hb3

{This gorgeous bedroom was designed by Thom Filicia for the House Beautiful Designer Visions Showhouse.}

So, let’s pick up where we left off yesterday, shall we? Today, we’ll continue with the next five designers on my Top 20 list. These five gentlemen bring an air of sophistication to everything they do. While they share a modern, tailored approach, each designer’s work is distinctly his own.

filicia-showhouse-living-room-1109-deThom Filicia: Thom brings a relaxed sensibility to his work that I adore. Take the living room pictured above for instance. It is completely chic and elegant, yet it feels totally casual and inviting. You can just as easily picture yourself having cocktails with friends in this room as you can imagine lounging on the sofa with a pile of magazines. I love the way he accessorizes each room, creating a layered feel.

todd romano

todd romano aptTodd Romano: I love Todd Romano’s fearless approach to design. He often mixes textures, patterns, and bold colors with amazing results. I admire the fact that he always incorporates artwork into his rooms. This fellow Texas native is a mix-master of sorts. He blends furniture from various periods, new pieces and antiques, traditional and modern with complete bravado.

Thomas O’Brien: What can I say about Thomas O’Brien that hasn’t already been said? He has accomplished what so many designers hope for. He is highly revered by design aficionados and has received critical acclaim, plus he has achieved enormous commercial success through his collections for Visual Comfort & Co., Hickory Chair, Reed & Barton, Safavieh, Groundworks-Lee Jofa, Waterworks, and Target. Spaces designed by Thomas always feel so personal, mostly through his brilliant way of layering accessories. There is also an architectural element to his work that I truly admire.

david jimenez kc

David Jimenez: I simply adore David’s classic sensibility and attention to detail. His designs are elegant, tailored, and timeless. His Kansas City home was one of the first homes that I truly fell in love with when I first started blogging. It is done in a formal, elegant style, but maintains a relaxed and inviting quality. He has always been so gracious and kind to me and that gentlemanly demeanor is reflected in the classic spaces he creates.

steven gambrel2steven gambrel elle decor Steven Gambrel: Some of my favorite country houses are designed by Gambrel. He has designed some of the most amazing coastal-inspired houses in recent memory. Despite the fact that a home may be designated as a country home or beach home, he brings an urbane sophistication to each project. Unafraid to use bold colors, Gambrel often opts for beautiful blue hues reminiscent of the sea. Blue isn’t typically my favorite color, but he has made me a believer! This consummate designer is a trained architect and also designs furniture.


Let’s hear it for the boys! Yesterday’s group was a cross-section of several aesthetics, while the designers in today’s post share a tailored, classic aesthetic infused with a knack for color. Of today’s group of designers, who would you choose to design your own home? Whose aesthetic is closest to your own style?

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