You guys. Have you seen the newest Nate Berkus line at Target? It doesn’t hit stores until this Sunday (the 15th), but there are some small previews floating around online (here, here and here). I come bearing good news because I’m here to give you yet another preview of what’s about to sell out like hotcakes.
Being a part of the Target Inner Circle, Greg and I got the chance to preview the entire line before it hit the Interwebs and one thing I can definitely tell you this collection is pretty amazing. Okay, it’s really amazing. I’m always a fan of Nate’s collections, but I have to say this one is truly my favorite yet. In true Nate fashion, it’s filled with natural elements, inspirational geometric paterns and fun metallics. Since we’re fans of the number 7 around here, we rounded up 7 of our favorite pieces from the collection…
It’s all really, really great; but if we had to pick two favorites, they would be the Marble Print Decorative Trays and the Metal Honeycomb Wall Art. I love trays and pretty much anything white, so the Marble Print trays were an ultra easy favorite for me. Off the top of my head, I can think of at least five places we could use them. That being the case, I want to put them somewhere they’ll be seen often. So, I’m thinking the coffee table in the living room… or my office, haha. And then the Honeycomb Wall Art. Ahh! These are so great. We (especially Greg) are big fans of anything with simple geometric lines, so we’ll definitely be adding a few of these to our decor lineup. We’re planning on hanging three of them to cluster together in the guest room.
To gear up for this post, not only did Target give us an opportunity to preview the line, but they also… are you ready for this?… set me up with a phone chat with Nate Berkus. I know!
I’m normally not one to be “star-struck” so to speak. I mean, celebrities are normal people too. They brush their teeth and put their pants on one leg at a time – just like everybody else, right? But. This was Nate. Freaking. Berkus. I’ve been a huge fan of Nate’s work since his very first makeover on The Oprah Show (If I remember correctly, for his first makeover, he totally transformed a tiny studio apartment. The transformation was amazing and made my teenage-self fall in love with built-ins). To be able to talk with him about something I love as much as interior design was a fun and amazing opportunity.
A few days later, when it came time for the phone call, I was naturally a little nervous but very excited. Every time I walked through the living room, I consciously avoided eye contact with his books sitting on our coffee table in fear of it freaking me out. Yeah, I’m weird like that. Then. I heard, “Hey Ashley, it’s Nate!”. I died. For the first 30 seconds, I’m really not sure what I said but it was probably something akin to what a 13-year-old would say to Harry Styles. Seriously. It was like I was experiencing verbal diarrhea. Is that okay to say here on the blog? I have no idea, but that’s what I felt like. On top of feeling abnormally nervous and star-struck… about 40 seconds into the phone call, the low battery beep started on the phone. Ya’ll. MY PHONE WAS DYING!!!! Earlier that morning, I made sure to put it on the receiver to fully charge (I’m notorious for forgetting to do that and letting them die), but for some reason the phone didn’t charge. I quickly went into Greg’s office to get the other house phone and… yep… No way. Dead. I mean, what was I supposed to do? Say, “Hold on Nate Freaking Berkus, I’m going to have to call you right back from my cell phone because I’m apparently an ignoramus and didn’t triple check and make sure our phone was charged before talking to my favorite interior designer.” No. So, I prayed (really, really hard) that the phone wouldn’t die in the middle of the convo. And thankfully, it didn’t. It actually died about 5 seconds after we said our goodbyes… and I lived to tell about it.
Anyway, despite the constant fear of my phone dying, we had a great chat about his new Fall line, where he found inspiration and his favorite pieces from the collection. I also had a chance to get his expert advice on a few projects we’re getting ready to start around here.
Much like his design philosophy, Nate wanted to create a collection that didn’t appear to “intentionally go together” but rather a group of pieces that looked as though they were collected over time and mix in with what people already love in their homes. For Nate and his team, there are about six months between the time the process of creating a new Target line begins and customers see it on the shelves. At the beginning of the development, the first order of business is to talk about inspiration. This time around, Nate said he was inspired by a mixture of eras and styles including mid-century Scandinavian, the French 1940′s, the Italian 1970′s as well as Peruvian handicrafts. He was also really inspired by the work of Italian architect / designer Gabriella Crespi - who is the designer behind the infamous brass “Z Desk” (if you haven’t seen it, click, it’s amazing).
After spending months and months pouring yourself into a line of unique products, I’m sure one would feel very attached to every single piece. Nevertheless, I asked Nate if he had to pick his favorite piece from the line, what would it be. He said it would have to be between the Gold Tiered Candelabra - which was inspired by mid-century Danish designs he’s really been into lately – and the Classic Task Lamp. The task lamp has pretty brass details and a marble base. He said he thinks it’s one of the best-designed lamps he’s ever done. I definitely have to agree because the combination of the white, brass and dark marble paired with the simple design is really classic (hence the name) and timeless.
Seeing as how I was on the phone with THE Nate Berkus, I couldn’t not ask him for a bit of decorating advice. I talked a bit about our plans for the guest bedroom. I’ll get more into the details in a later post, but we’re basically going to be starting all over from square one. The first thing on our to-do list is to paint the walls. I told him a bit about the room and the look we were aiming for and asked if he had any go-to wall colors to suggest. He talked about how pretty much every guest room looks the same, so if we go with a deeper / moodier color, it’s more unexpected and overall cozier. That being the case, he suggested we go with either a medium “classic gray” (similar to vintage Christian Dior hat boxes) or a deep/muddy brown. Needless to say, this gray-wall-loving gal was happy to hear his suggestions and couldn’t get to the paint store fast enough.
Another project we’re hoping to start in the near future, is my office. I’ve been trying to come up with a concept for at least a month or two and keep hitting mental road blocks. That being the case, I thought it was best to make a list of everything the space had to have and then mark them off as I come up with the room plan. So, I asked Nate what top three things he thinks every home office should have. Here’s what he suggested: ONE // Tall, shallow cabinet with doors. You can hold a lot of necessities behind closed doors and not have them become eyesores. TWO // Decorative baskets. Having a pair of cool baskets under your desk (one with a plastic liner for trash and one for recycling) serves a purpose but looks good too. THREE // Good lighting. A desk lamp or floor lamp can bring lots of light in the room and prevent it from becoming dark and depressing.
I have to thank Target for setting this phone chat up. Nate was so gracious, kind, easy to talk to and loaded with valuable and helpful information. I’m so thankful for him carving out the time to talk with me. It will be a great story for the Thanksgiving dinner table ; )
And now, the giveaway! The folks at Target are giving one lucky reader a $100 Target gift card! Woo hoo! Here’s how to enter… Scroll down to the giveaway widget below and log in with your Facebook account. If you’d rather not use your Facebook account, or don’t have one, just enter your email address. As always, your information is kept private! Once you’ve done that, you’ll be shown the entry requirements set by yours truly. Click the “Do it!” button, type the phrase in the blank in the widget, then click “Enter!”. Now that you’ve entered, you’ll see some optional entry options. To gain additional entries and increase your chances of winning the prize, you can do one or all of them. If you already follow Target or 7th House, go ahead and enter your Facebook or Twitter info, and you’ll be automatically given the extra entries. This giveaway is open to those in the US only and as usual, the winner will be chosen using Random.org. The giveaway will close Sunday night at midnight EST. Good luck everyone!
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