Miami Living Magazine

Torrey DeVitto

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What is your interior design motto? Erinn Valencich: I took an art class during high school once and the teacher said, "Draw what you see, not what you think you see." That to me, was very profound. I think that alone can change a space dramatically. If you look at a photo of a room that you love and you try to apply that to your life, a lot people just don't take the guidance from the image or the design they are inspired by —they just do their own thing. But if you want the room to be light and bright with white walls and soft blue rug, then why are you painting your room burgundy? To bake a cake, you have to have flour, sugar, salt, vanilla. To design a room, you can't have all flour and sugar and expect the cake to be great. Why would you think you can have one thing in a room and expect it to be great? People get really stuck on a favorite coffee table rather than thinking of it more holistically. They get stuck on the individual elements and that never rings about the most interesting design. You were born into a family of artists [her grandfather was a fine cabinetmaker and father an architect], tell us how you believe that influenced you and the artist you are today? EV: I grew up on a farm outside Sacramento. My grandfather had been a contractor. He built the town church, put the second story on our house. By the time I came around, he was a fine cabinet maker. He was making beautiful kitchen cabinets and furniture pieces out of his woodshop. I spent a lot of time there and found myself making a Barbie sofa out of scrap wood. My mom was the ultimate DIYer! She was always working on projects: recovering an old chair, fixing up something she found in the flea market, and finishing up our house with beautiful murals and textures. There was always somebody making something and being artistic in our family, so it was definitely an influence.

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