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AT HOME with Anita Lang | Inside an Interior Designer’s Mind: Inspiration

Anita Lang IMI Design
Staring at your four walls and looking for interior design inspiration, tap into the creativity inside a designer’s mind.

As this global pandemic we are facing continues to reshape the world around us, we are reminded more than ever of the importance of the spaces in which we live. By now, I’m sure you’ve been staring at the four walls of your home and noticing how your space makes you feel. You may even be wondering where to get interior design inspiration. Ever since I can remember, I’ve always been acutely aware of the emotional impact created by an interior environment.

What I've always loved about design is its ability to raise the human spirit.

IMI Design's Anita Lang with design inspiration

What I’ve always loved about design is its ability to raise the human spirit. When you think about it, we often choose our favorite shops, restaurants or even the places in our homes by the way that they make us feel. That is the power of design…and when we put intention behind our spaces, it has the ability to elevate our lifestyles and our experiences in those spaces with interior design inspiration.

With this in mind, I thought it might be fun to share some of my creative process, using my living room space at ICONIC HAUS as a design lab and design inspirations; to help those who may be less spatially inclined to reimagine their spaces through the eyes of a creative.

So let’s take a peek into the designer’s mind…I promise, it’s fun in here!

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ICONIC HAUS design inspiration by Anita Lang

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DESIGN INSPIRATION | CLIENT-DRIVEN
My interior design inspiration typically starts from two main sources: the clients themselves and the architecture of the structure.

The primary source of information is always the client. As the muse for the project, the client guides the design through tastes and preferences, lifestyle and personality. It is an honor to be entrusted with crafting a home for a family… the place where they will share memories of holiday meals, family gatherings and celebrations with friends. The home should feel like an extension of family, and their spaces should tell the story of their journey. It is the stage for the story of their lives and it’s where I go to get interior design inspiration.

At the beginning stages of the project, I do what I call the “full download” before I allow myself to start designing. This can sometimes be difficult for me as it is my natural inclination for ideas to start popping into my head the second I see a new space. However, I would not be doing the project justice to start designing until every aspect of the clients’ lives has been taken into consideration.

modern interior design inspiration for ICONIC HAUS
ICONIC HAUS modern interior design inspiration

During the initial concept meeting, everything is laid out on the table. From preferences of colors and materials, to favorite places they’ve traveled, and even how they like their socks folded; every aspect of their lives is important to consider in the design process. The information related to their lifestyles and daily routines allows me to start envisioning a space and getting interior design inspiration that provides unique, functional solutions for the way my clients live their lives.

For example, some clients of mine in LA bought a home to start a family, I designed a kitchen island with a wraparound counter at table-height instead of bar-height, allowing little ones to gather in the kitchen, and become a place for snacks and eventually homework, keeping in mind how design varies from Manhattan to Manhattan Beach.

Another client couple have become empty nesters which led to creating a fun “adult playground” in their basement for entertaining, wine tasting and even a car bar garage to show off their sports car collection, all places where I go to get interior design inspiration.

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After considering the clients’ preferences, the architectural cues of the home will drive the design.

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DESIGN INSPIRATION | ARCHITECTURE-DRIVEN
After considering the clients’ preferences, the architectural cues of the home will drive the design. This often includes my collaboration with the architect to ensure harmony in the design philosophy. As a result, the components within the interiors become an extension of the overall goals and leads to a stronger design solution.

Having worked on everything from traditional Mediterranean-style homes to modern studies in glass and concrete, the architecture of the home provides the framework for the design concept, and I consider it when accessing interior design inspiration. The forms and structures of the home, the use of architectural massing, and the materials used throughout are all taken into account as a part of this process. Even before a stitch of furniture, the space will be evocative with character and warmth.

interior design inspiration with Anita Lang IMI Design

LISTEN TO OUR ICONIC HOUR PODCAST: ANITA LANG OF IMI DESIGN TALKS ABOUT DESIGN FROM MANHATTAN TO MANHATTAN BEACH

Also, to be considered is the vernacular of the location, which encompasses the physical setting, natural environment, and cultural significance. A structure will remain for decades or even centuries; and should be a reflection of the surrounding climate and people. One way to achieve this goal of appropriateness to local vernacular is by incorporating locally sourced furnishings, materials and art when possible.

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Anita Lang's design inspiration for ICONIC HAUS

All of these components—the clients, the architecture and the setting come together to create a beautiful home and become a place from where I draw interior design inspiration. With all this in mind, pencil meets paper, ideas begin flowing and the creative process begins. This is my greatest joy—a natural high—to watch the design solutions that present themselves, which will enrich people’s lives.

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