There are moments where you look at one photo of a design project and think: “that is the winning shot.” Those are the pictures where you can sense the ambience, feel the texture, and imagine yourself living in that space. It is a space that is overwhelmingly chic, yet incredibly inviting. This is precisely the type of atmosphere that designer CeCe Barfield Thompson creates. The only difference is it isn’t captured in just one photo. Instead, it is the entire house.
While CeCe has the ability to create a home with a seemingly effortless charisma, you can tell that each detail is well executed and thoughtful (she previously worked under Bunny Williams). You immediately feel invited looking at these photos. In her design, you see the sincere use of color, the purposeful display of pattern, and the welcoming format of furniture. If you are serious about chic design, CeCe is a name you must know. Lucky for you, you can get to know her more in my interview below.
Photos courtesy of CeCe Barfield Inc.
Where are you from/live currently?
I am originally from Texas and my heart is still there in so many ways! I currently live in New York City with my husband and our two little girls.
How would you describe your personal design aesthetic?
As a designer, I am constantly exploring and finding new inspiration that influences my style. If I had to choose a few words to characterize my aesthetic they would be: livable, elegant and collected.
Best advice you ever received about designing?
Bunny always asked, “have you seen it, have you sat in it and have you measured it?” These three questions are fundamental to any good design!
What current trends are you embracing?
Maximalism! I am so thrilled that the world is embracing layers once again. Collections have an amazing narrative quality that give spaces unique character. I always hope to create one of a kind interiors for my clients that reflect where they’ve been and who they are.
What are your design pet peeves?
Ubiquitous interiors. In the digital age, there are so many resources that make design almost too easy. It is always obvious when a designer hasn’t spent the time sourcing unique pieces – it’s a shame because “the hunt” is the most fun part of the job! You can learn so much from dealers about periods, provenance and materials. Also, they always have best stories! Experience has in a lot of ways been much more valuable than my formal training.
Who inspires you?
My favorite interior designers are Bunny Williams, Daniel Romualdez, Paolo Moschino and Jeffrey Bilhuber. I am also very lucky to have an amazing team that inspires me every day. My firm is extremely collaborative. My team and I have “pin-ups” every week just like I did in design school. Everyone brings ideas and the hope is that we are all inspired to do the very best work possible!
What is on your nightstand?
Our nightstands are tiny Sheraton tables so there isn’t room for much! On mine are two photos in silver frames (one of my children and one of my husband), a cased brass Tiffany’s alarm clock, and a huge stack of books! Right now the stack includes Bunny Mellon by Meryl Gordon, Tubes by Andrew Blum, Ma’am Darling by Craig Brown and Preservation of What, for Whom? by Michael A. Tomlin