“Echoes of Lives Unlived” – Memorial Day Remembrance

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Echoes of Lives Unlived

OPINION By David Latimer – Special to the American-Statesman
(Note: David Latimer is Deborah Main’s husband of 32 years).

Posted: 1:00 a.m. Saturday, May 25, 2013

My mother simply called him “a boy I used to know.” Then she added, “He was killed in the war.” That’s how she referred to him when as a child I asked about the wings in her jewelry box, the large pink box with the little ballerina that would spin with the music. I picked up the wings and held them, coveted them perhaps for my own, but they went back into the box, under other things. “They were from a boy I used to know who was killed in the war,” she said simply.

It did not occur to me then that these wings, a gift perhaps before he went overseas, represented a personal loss, or even a deep grief. But it’s hard to think otherwise now. My mother may have been somewhat inured to loss, if such is possible. Her mother died when she was 6, shortly after giving birth to her third child and second son, and then her father, determined to support in any way possible his three young children, was fatally injured in a train accident, falling off a box car as he was making his way to harvest wheat in the summer of 1931 in the Texas Panhandle, Oklahoma and Kansas.

It is an old folks tale likely, though it’s been attributable to others who have used the phrase, that one is not truly dead until the last person who remembers you dies. If so, then William Y. (Bill) Ligon is not yet dead, for my mother’s oldest brother, my Uncle Frank, a veteran from the same war, still lives and certainly remembers him as he is listed as a pallbearer in the newspaper clipping my mother preserved from the reburial service held in Dallas. And he may yet be remembered by others this Memorial Day, perhaps by one or more of a still-living brother or sister; there were two of each noted in the other clipping in my mother’s scrapbook that I have open in front of me, the one with the news that he had been killed in Germany. I have no doubt that my mother thought of him many times before her own passing in 2003, maybe more frequently after my father died, contemplating from time to time a different future but for the war. Perhaps having an occasional recollection of him even as her Alzheimer’s stole her sense of the present, but seemed to leave for a while more distant memories.

But it brings to mind that in time, these men and women from that war, these called “The Greatest Generation” who died fighting “The Good War” will become, as individuals, more distant, increasingly fragile, memories. Remembered by an ever-diminishing number of those that served with them, remembered still, for a time, by younger brothers and sisters, by cousins, or simply those who had been young children living in the neighborhoods where they grew up.

I began to think about Bill Ligon more a few years back when at a family reunion, my mother’s close cousin, much more like a sister, and her youngest brother, both passed on now, brought his name up in their reminiscences. She said, “I think Pete (my mother’s family nickname) might have married Bill Ligon if he hadn’t been killed.” My Uncle Bill, a veteran of Korea, nodded an agreement.

I think it was that that made me go back and look through her scrapbook, to find what I could beyond those Army Air Force wings, not only wondering what might have been, but what might not have been as well. I find from that clipping that he and my mother went to different high schools in Dallas, he to Sunset, while she graduated Forest Avenue. But it says he worked at Walgreen’s and I know that my mother worked there as well. Perhaps this is the link that brought them together.

Staff Sgt. Bill Ligon, a gunner on a B-17, died when his bomber was shot down on Oct. 6, 1944, while on a mission over Berlin. He was 22 years old. And two pages over in the scrapbook, there is another clipping held on with now brittle cellophane tape. On December 7, 1944, the Dallas Morning News carried a brief item announcing the engagement of Mary Viola Sloan to Lt. Billy Latimer, and that the wedding would take place on Dec. 23. My father had a few months earlier, while in the Army Reserves, completed dental school in Dallas, and was now on active duty and stationed at what was then Camp Hood, but it seems with frequent opportunities to return home. He at one time had briefly dated that very sisterly cousin before meeting my mother and it was very much a sudden thing between them. My father was 24 and would soon be off for Europe himself, sailing on the Queen Mary just a few months before V-E Day, but of course as a dental officer he had few perils to contemplate beyond the rumors of U-boats. He was more likely occupied with thoughts of his young wife and, soon after arriving in Europe, of the child she would have in November.

But would he have had a chance had that B-17 not been shot down in October? Was my mother really only a close and caring friend to the “boy she used to know who was killed in the war?” Or did her loss and even grief give my father a better chance? I trust what my mother’s cousin and brother said. My mother may have waited and if history had been at least a bit different in that one mission, how else would history have turned? And for the over 415,000 United States military deaths from that war, what of those unrealized futures, those unrealized lives and progeny? Could my mother have been Mrs. Bill Ligon, leaving me and my brother as unrealized alternate history? As Horatio says to Hamlet, “’Twere to consider too curiously to consider so.”

But one other item I have, tucked into that scrap book: a souvenir photograph, a 5×7. It is still in its red, thin pasteboard folder labeled Plantation: Dallas, Texas. A restaurant, a night spot. Inside my mother has written, “November 26, 1943: Friday night.” On that day in the Pacific, the number of U.S Marines killed in the just-concluded invasion of the tiny island of Tarawa numbered over 1,000 in just 72 hours — a shock to the country and an omen of what was yet to come. In Italy the 36th Infantry Division, the Texas Division, over two months after the landing at Salerno was stalled between Naples and Casino and in the next four weeks would face terrible losses at San Pietro and at the disastrous attempt to cross the Rapido River.

But at home, in Dallas, it’s the day after Thanksgiving. Sgt. Bill Ligon is on leave from Concho Field in San Angelo. He has signed the folder with his name and that address. Altogether there are three couples. All three boys are in uniform. The table is covered with beer and spirit bottles. One beer I can identify is Falstaff, an artifact in itself. My mother is at the center of the picture, a lovely young woman of 21, small in the picture, she was just 5-foot-2. At her right is Bill Ligon. He is extraordinarily handsome. Dark hair and eyes, a square jaw, firm chin, gazing directly into the camera as they all are, gazing at the photographer who would sell the photo, sell it to Bill Ligon who would buy a print as a gift to my mother who would keep it for the rest of her life. A man any young woman would wait for if waiting had ever been discussed, or even implied in the giving of those wings.

In less than a year he would be dead along with many more we must remember, not just in that war, but in the others. They served, they died, and in their dying it would not just be an individual loss. In time they all will become unknown soldiers in that there will be no personal memories, though their names will endure. But what stays is the might have beens, the history of the country and the world that was not written for the absence of so many players. The history of the world would change with their sacrifice. My mother’s history, my father’s. My own, which might have been a history that may not have been. So we memorialize not only the dead, the ones who gave everything, but the loss to the future. To the world that was not to be. The children that were not to be born. Loss begets loss.

Then there is Laurence Binyon’s poem from the first World War “For the Fallen” and the one stanza in particular which is so often quoted and which to me gathers power as I look at that young man in that picture, brave, confident and full of destiny, my mother pressed against his strong arm.

“They shall not grow old as we that are left grow old:

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning,

We will remember them.”

So though I never knew him, I do remember Sgt. Bill Ligon, killed in action on Oct. 6, 1944 — a boy my mother used to know.

Thank You to Our Supporters at High Point & Design on a Dime!


Its never too late to say thank you and one can never say it quite enough….especially to those individuals who have supported my work from the very beginning (like some of you!) and those of you who’ve recently discovered my work and support it now, continually opening up new and exciting opportunities for Deborah Main Designs.

April was a BIG month for our little studio this year! I am truly grateful to two incredibly talented interior designers who showcased my one-of-a-kind pillows in their spaces: Jonathan Legate and Kelli Ellis. And two savvy small business owners who exhibit at High Point Market each year:  Heather Karlie Viera of 20th Century by HKFA (who debuted the Modern Look Book – read my interview with Heather HERE) in the Antique & Design Center and Ruth Olbrych of Antiques by ZAAR in the ZAAR Design Center.

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Jonathan Legate – Thank you to Jonathan Legate, the first international designer invited to participate in Design on a Dime NYC (DOADNYC). Above are the three pillows I handcrafted for his vignette and below are some images of his vignette.  It was such an honor to custom design with Jonathan and be one of fifteen donors for his gorgeous vignette at DOADNYC. Jonathan’s vignette was in the top tier of highest selling spaces and helped reach 1.2 million. A staggering amount raised for Housing Works!! Congratulations to all the designers and vendors who participated in this outstanding event sponsored by Elle Decor.


You may not know this about me, but my heart has and always will be with non profits. Prior to creating decorative pillows, I was a staunch advocate for young and old, starting a chapter of Generations United in Texas and volunteering or 5 years as a C.A.S.A. (Court Appointed Special Advocate). I then raised my own family, discovered my artistic expression through pillows and now donate hundreds of dollars every year through our in-kind pillow donations for many local and national causes from breast cancer to child abuse prevention to ending homelessness. Being an advocate for three helpless young children ( whom I still keep in touch with today) made me realize long ago I could not save the world, but

if I could help one child, one family, one elderly person, and one homeless person, then I would make the world a better place one pillow at a time.


The above one-of-a-kind Deborah Main pillow, displayed on a modern wing back chair donated by Ambella Home, is handcrafted from a vintage Richard Allen silk scarf in a very striking mosaic pattern.  It is backed with rich black velvet and the scarf is hand stitched to the top of the pillow.


Jonathan’s vignette had so many generous vendors who donated many, many beautiful items from all the mirrors, to the incredible rug, chairs and more. Please see list HERE.

Designing for two top interior designers was exciting and challenging, but I loved it because both projects were completely different. With Jonathan, he was very involved in the design process and more hands on because his vision was for a stand alone vignette for Design on a Dime charity event in NYC and he wanted it all to be perfect. Jonathan had pieces of his vision, but it all came together when he fell in love with the gorgeous rug. Please see my interview with Jonathan HERE.

I was nervous about working with both designers because lots of people and other top interior designers and press would be viewing these rooms. So with Jonathan, I will admit I panicked for a moment not sure if I’d ever find the perfect textiles for him.

What reassured me, is I didn’t have to look further than my own studio to hit the nail on the head, as I had the textiles all along in my collection.

I also discovered that Jonathan was a “purist” like me who valued “the integrity of the designer scarf” so we agreed I’d hand stitch the scarf on the pillow. Jonathan also wanted black velvet piping on one of the vintage textiles. I must say, his choices helped create stunning pieces for a completely unique vignette project and look. His color palette was soft and very specific with a gold/moss green/cream and black color way. I was also able to offer him one of our new “Linen and Wood” pillows below.


Above is a sneak peek of our brand new pillow collection “Linen & Wood”. Jonathan and I selected a fabulous moss green modern vintage French trim. Our new collection attaches any of our vintage French trims (we have a huge collection!) to a wooden circle, stained in black, hand turned by Jeff Hornung of The Walnut Log. Jeff and I had been working on this new collection for about six months so it was absolutely thrilling to have both Jonathan and Kelli feature our NEW Linen & Wood pillows in their spaces. I love how the green trim complemented the beautiful moss velvet chairs donated by Empirical Home.  (New Linen & Wood pillow collection will be available on our BRAND NEW website, coming VERY soon, so please sign up for our blog HERE, so you don’t miss a thing!)

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Kelli Ellis – Thank you to Kelli Ellis, an HGTV celebrity designer based in Vegas who also launched her new art collection at High Point.  It was great fun to work with Kelli, who was more hands off giving me total creative freedom to custom design pillows for her installation for Universal Furniture. I enjoyed both approaches by the individual designers! She sent me a pic of Universals new upholstery line, a blue velvet sofa and said she wanted custom pillows that mixed up color, pattern and size. And boy, do I love to mix it all up!!  Only later did I find out it was for High Point’s inaugural Elevate Design Tour gala event for top luxury interior designers.

But in some ways, not knowing everything is part of the fun and challenge. So I didn’t have to think but one nanosecond of which textile immediately came to mind for the blue velvet sofa.  I have my own blue velvet sofa, albeit it’s vintage and a tiny tuxedo love seat. But I’d been dying to find the perfect project for this (below) brilliantly colored vintage satin scarf filled with many shades of orange and red and touches of navy blue, in a kind of stained glass pattern.

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Then, Kelli told me the rest of the room, gray walls and a green/ blue rug. Now this is where the expertise of a talented interior designer really shines. In fact in my mind it is the #1 thing they do with beauty and ease that I can’t do and is best left to a professional interior designer. A talented and experienced interior designer like Kelli Ellis, really knows how to pull a room and look together.

The final result was a mixture of beautiful pops of color, scale and texture. As Neil with Universal Furniture said “We really appreciated your participation as the pillows added some great color to the space!” 

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And notice Kelli too debuted one of our BRAND NEW “Linen & Wood” pillows, which was noticed by the editor, Laura Van Zeyl, of one of the home furnishings top trend magazines, Home Fashion Forecast.  Check it out in this post “What Do Linen and Wood Have in Common?” HERE. Thank you Laura!  And I must give a shout out to friend and super home accessory designer herself, the talented Jackie Von Tobel of Soft Design Lab, who stopped by Universal Furniture to grab a pair of our lime green, blue and gray modern pillows for a pic. I went on the Vegas market tour with Jackie and she’ll be debuting her NEW rug designs as one of several “Haute Trend” designers in July at Vegas Market at Feizy Rugs.  Congrats and thank you Jackie!



The above blue, silver gray and lime pillows are Limited Editions and will be available on our NEW website, coming out very soon! I’m SO excited!!

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And a BIG thank you to my dear friend, interior designer, Linda Holt of Linda Holt Interiors. She won Amy Wax of Color 911 and my #coloryourholidays Instagram contest winning an ornament and this versatile pillow we call The Wave. Here it is in aqua blue in Kelli Ellis’s room and below is Linda inspiring another contest, the #favedeborahmainpillow photo contest at High Point Market.


Once Linda flashed her beautiful smile with The Wave, we opened it up on Instagram for anyone to stop by 20th Century by HKFA and either take a pic of our pillows, or snap a photo with you holding our pillows, or better yet, even purchase a pillow! It was great fun and I’d like to thank the following friends, interior designers, and divas for taking the time out of your busy schedules to stop by.

I truly appreciate your support: Linda Holt of Linda Holt Interiors, Leslie Carothers of Kaleidoscope Partnership, Justin Shaulis of Justin Shaulis Inc., Carmen Natschke of The Decorating Diva, Mitzi Beach of Boomers Smart, Toma Clark Haines of The Antiques Diva & Co., Cheryl Kees Clendenon of In Detail Interiors, and last but not least, Gary Inman, Vice President of Hospitality at one of the nation’s oldest architectural firms, Baskervill.

Congrats to the winner of our High Point Instagram contest: Cheryl Kees Clendenon. This over-sized pillow made from a large vintage Vera Neumann silk scarf was the BIG prize!!   Check out our other colorful vintage silk scarf pillows at Deborah Main Designs shop.  Sign up for our blog HERE and we’ll email you a coupon for a major discount to these beauties as we’re making way for brand new inventory for the launch of our new website!


Many thanks to Heather, Ruth, and Kelli for making my debut at High Point Market a huge splash and to Jonathan for including my work in Design on a Dime.  Both of these events have been the highlight of the year so far!  It can only go up from here. If you’re interested in hiring Kelli or Jonathan, you couldn’t ask for more talented top interior designers.  Check out their websites here: KelliEllis.com and JonathanLegate.com.

If any of you interior designers or home and boutique hotel owners out there reading this blog want to know how easy it is to work with Deborah Main Designs and how we can take care of all your luxury decorative pillow needs, just ask Kelli and Jonathan and give our studio a call 512.447.9807 or email us at inquire@deborahmaindesigns.com.  We’d love to work with you on your next project, as creating custom pillows for our clients is our specialty!  Till next week, please enjoy these fun instagram photos by some of our FAB supporters!! Thank you so much! XOPG

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What Do Linen & Wood Have In Common?


Deborah Main linen and wood pillows

Linen and Wood Pillows

“Pillow Goddess” Deborah Main made her High Point debut this spring in a display for Universal Furniture created by celebrity designer Kelli Ellis. The American-made linen pillows feature vintage French trim with wood that’s been hand-turned by Jeff Hornung of The Walnut Log, also handcrafted in the United States. Main is best known for meticulously handmade pillows incorporating textiles and embellishments of bygone eras, updated for a contemporary aesthetic.


Deborah Main
1906 Collier St.
Austin, TX 78704

The answer is pillows, but of course!!

If you’ve been following my blog for the past few years (Subscribe right HERE), you know I absolutely LOVE wood!!  Driftwood, dead wood, trees, the grain of wood, you name it, I love wood. And for 6 months, wood turner Jeff Hornung of The Walnut Log and I have been working behind the scenes on perfecting this exciting new collection. (I can’t wait to tell you what his pick up line was…lol!!)

So I just had to share this press piece, as I’m thrilled that Home Fashion Forecast editor Laura Van Zeyl spotted our BRAND NEW collection Linen and Wood (which will be on the new website coming soon!) that we custom made for celebrity interior designer Kelli Ellis’s installation for Universal Furniture during High Point Market.

Please enjoy a few pics, as I love how Kelli mixed up our Linen & Wood Collection featuring orange chenille vintage French trim, with our Redbrick Modern collection, a pair of cool blue and lime green graphics pillows, all on this gorgeous blue velvet tufted sofa, a new fabric line by Universal Furniture. Who doesn’t love blue velvet!?!

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Thank you so much Laura for naming our new collection “Linen and Wood” and featuring it in Home Fashion Forecast’s April 26th newsletter HERE!  Be in the know, and sign up to receive all of Home Fashion Forecast’s latest news on home design trends right HERE.

And many, many thanks to Kelli Ellis for asking me to design all her pillows for her beautiful display!

That’s one thing you can count on with our luxury brand, we at Deborah Main Designs, will take care of ALL your pillow decorating needs on time. Just ask Kelli!  So reach out to our studio and let us help you with your next project. 512.447.9807 or inquire@deborahmaindesigns.com

Ever hire an interior designer before? More coming up next week on the benefits of hiring a professional interior designer or consultant (believe me, you will want to pronto!) and what it’s like designing pillows for two interior designers and two shows at the same time. Absolutely thrilling!!! Till then, enjoy this beautiful spring weather and be safe #TurnAroundDon’tDrown in all this rain we’ve been having in Texas.  XO PG


Here We Come NYC – The Fabulous Design on a Dime Charity Event!


Who would have ever guessed that in one month, April 2016, Deborah Main luxury pillows would debut at High Point Market in N.C. and then Design on a Dime in NYC!?!?! Not me! But because of some fabulous business owners and interior designers, along with wonderful team work and collaboration, this is true!  And it’s been THRILLING!!

But today’s post is all about Design on a Dime happening in NYC Thursday April 21st through Saturday April 23rd, 2016. There are still tickets available for Design on a Dime, (DOAD) so if you’re in NYC, planning to be in NYC, or know anyone in NYC, please purchase a ticket right HERE and attend this fabulous cause!

And the bonus is, you get to see incredible design by friend Jonathan Legate, three of the luxury pillows I designed and donated for his vignette, AND shop and donate to this incredible charity Housing Works. For today, this is a quick post to share more about the event and Jonathan, and a brief  interview with Design Consultant Jonathan Legate.


About Design on a Dime: Elle Decor refers to the event as an “unmatched shopping opportunity.” The 3-day extravaganza and benefit will feature more than 60 of the world’s top designers who create incredible, imaginative vignettes using new merchandise donated by vendors from all over the world. These items are then sold to the public. The VIP Opening Night Reception brings together hundreds of VIP’s, designers, and friends of Housing Works. Design enthusiasts will mingle with top designers and event chairs.  Guests will enjoy a special preview of the room vignettes and exclusive shopping, cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and live entertainment.  It is guaranteed to be a night to be remembered – and all for a great cause; to help Housing Works.

100% of the proceeds from Design on a Dime fund Housing Works and will benefit the newest supportive housing development, Hull Street Residence. Hull Street is a from-the-ground-up housing development project, transforming a vacant 6,000 sq. ft. lot, into beautiful and safe homes for 28 single, formerly homeless adults living with HIV/AIDS.

About Jonathan Legate: 


Halifax-based Design Consultant Jonathan Legate is a rarity in today’s interior design world.  He speaks from his heart and designs with his soul, “Decorating from both ends of the spectrum basically guarantees that you’ll have a look nobody else has.” His individuality sets him apart from the other designers.

His work is both contemporary and traditional, often in a surprising yet seamless integration. He has been featured in various media, and in spring 2009 was Canadian Home and Country’s first Nova Scotian cover in its 20-year history.

IMPORTANT – Jonathan is the first and only international designer selected for this year’s Design on a Dime Benefit. Congratulations Jonathan!!!

Jonathan took some time out of his busy schedule to answer a few questions for our readers:

PG: I heard that you are the first international designer to be invited to create a vignette for Design on a Dime this year in NYC. How does that feel?

JL:  I am very excited and proud to be representing Canada at Design on a Dime (DOAD). It’s an honor to be asked.

PG: Have you attended DOAD before, and can you tell our readers more about its significance?

JL: Design on a dime is a very exciting event. Designers go all out with their visions creating stunning vignettes with all the contents for sale at 50-70 % off retail. As one of the top fundraisers in NYC, my space alone will have almost $70,000 of merchandise. All proceeds go to Housing Works supporting their work with the homeless living with HIV /AIDS. This year the funds will go to support the building of a new residence that will provide homes for their clients.

PG: That must be challenging to find all donated product to make your vignette reflect the high standards and luxury aesthetic you strive for in your work?  What brands and artisans have donated to your vignette and what  are you most excited about? I saw the rug and it is definitely swoon worthy!

JL: I was amazed at the generosity of so many companies. I work with great vendors and Design on a Dime has such a wonderful reputation it was much simpler than I thought it would be to procure the merchandise donations. I even had people offering to donate before I asked, like you, Deborah Main, and your fabulous custom cushions. Before I asked vendors for donations I had a very clear vision of what the room should look like and did concept renderings using the pieces I intended on asking for. (Here’s Jonathan’s rendering below)


This allowed my donors to actually see how their items would be used and how prominently displayed they would be. This is a fundraiser so we wanted lots of merchandise but it was also important to to create a beautifully designed and planned space. I did not ask for or accept things that didn’t fit into my vision. The result will be a room one could imagine living in, a collected space of treasures.  It’s hard to say which of the things are my favorite because they really are all so unique and beautiful.


Thank you Jonathan for taking the time to share a little more about your vignette. Read more about Jonathan Legate featured at Design on a Dime HERE.   Also, here’s a list of the companies that donated to all of the beautiful vignettes that will appear at this exciting fundraising event!

For me personally having Deborah Main pillows appear for the first time in NYC and to be able to design for such a talent designer as Jonathan Legate at this incredibly exciting annual fundraiser.  It’s a true honor and very cool to see my brand, Deborah Main Designs, listed in this loooong list of 500+ wonderful brands donating to Design on a Dime HERE.

I cannot share with you yet Jonathan’s final vignette. (I will in future posts). But you can read more about Jonathan and the brands that donated to his vignette HERE.  All I can say now is that it is going to be G-O-R-G-E-O-U-S!!!!  And I can share with you a sneak peek of the textiles I used for the pillows we designed for the vignette, one being a yet-to-be-released brand NEW Deborah Main collection using our vast collection of vintage French trim and hand-turned wood by Jeff Hornung of The Walnut Log. Till next time, please go enjoy yourself for a great cause Design on a Dime. XOPG





Want to Win Your #favedeborahmainpillow at High Point?

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See ZAAR Design Center at the bottom of that white sign on the corner of that building? Well read on, for all the fun to be had tonight and the rest of High Point Market.



Where:  Penthouse Floor of the Lofts, UNION SQUARE party on Roof Top at ZAAR Design Center, Union Square, 410 English Rd, E 101, High Point, N.C.

When: Monday, TONIGHT, April 18th

Time: 7 -9 p.m.

Who With: Distinguished retailers, designers, manufacturers and hosts Calvin Klein Union Square, and Rene Cazares.

Libations: Hor d’oeuvres and selections of wine

After Party: We will be continuing the party at our showroom at ZAAR Design Center at Antiques by Zaar. So, IF you can’t make the earlier event, drop in at ZAAR later on. Excited to see a full house tonight!!

Libations: Buddha Beer is on ice and wine restocked.

Special Birthday Celebration: Alicia Connolly, of Alicia Connolly Designs, my dear friend who is responsible for the fresh new look in my showroom is having a landmark birthday next week. Birthday cake served. Come join us, the more the merrier!

Bonus Deborah Main Pillow Contest:  Along with the after party, Deborah Main is having a pillow give away contest that started yesterday, so join in the fun. When you come to ZAAR Design Center showroom, grab your FAVE Deborah Main pillow and get your photo snapped. See Rules Below!! (If you miss this party, you can still enter the contest at this showroom and the 20th Century by HKFA showroom all day Tuesday and Wed. And even at the Kelli Ellis Installation at Universal Furniture, because there’s 7 pillows there!)  See Rules Below!!


Simple rules to follow: 

  • Snap photo of yourself and others with #favedeborahmainpillow and post it on Instagram and Facebook and all over social media
  • Must post pic with 3 hashtags #favedeborahmainpillow #hpmkt #modernlookbook
  • Pillow Photo contest ends 5 p.m. Wed, April 20th; winner announced later that evening.
  • Enter as many times as you like, but you must use those hashtags. Tagging friends increases your chances of winning.
  • Ready. Set. Go. Win #favedeborahmainpillow!!!

Parking: Plenty of parking here today AND every day for ZAAR customers. Red bus stop 27 is just outside the building and of course there is the Go Anywhere bus.

ZAAR @ Union Square
410 English Rd, E 101
PH: 207 838 2675
(info gathered from a shared email blast via Ruth Olbrych )



ZAAR Design Center Features Two New Artisans at High Point

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This week’s blog post is about GRATITUDE, and an interview with Ruth Olbrych, owner of the ZAAR Design Center.  But also today, I’ve been married for 32 years to THE most amazing husband, David Latimer!!! Hard to believe he’s put up with me for THAT long, but I feel VERY blessed. And tomorrow is my birthday!!

What better way to celebrate my fun birthday/anniversary combo then to have my work represented, FOR THE VERY 1ST TIME, at the High Point Market, April 16 – 20th, by THREE showrooms.  

Those who have followed me for the past 12 years know that I attempted to go National in 2013 at Atlanta Market, but I was not ready and it taught me A LOT of what I needed to change in these last few years to make my business Deborah Main Designs more successful.  I’m ready now friends!!!  And I hope you will celebrate with me this great accomplishment to make it this far.

I am truly humbled and grateful to 4 amazing women, 3 of whom you see here below, and the other, the lovely Heather Karlie Vieira, of 20th Century by HKFA, I interviewed last week HERE about her debut of Modern Look Book.

On today’s blog, I’m interviewing Ruth,so you can learn all about Antiques by Zaar. But first a HUGE thank you to all 4 of you remarkable business women in the design and home furnishings world!! THANK YOU!!!

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PG: Well, I’m honored that our dear friend Jana Platina Phipps, The Trim Queen, connected us and that you’ll be one of three showrooms representing my line.  And I feel it’s a perfect fit as many of our new and modern textiles I hand select from Mom & Pop shops in China, and many of our Les Bijoux pillows with the vintage brooches and French trim are so well suited with your antiques. How are you feeling about High Point starting this weekend?

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RO: Yes, the excitement is mounting as new product continues to arrive into the showroom at Union Square. Nothing juices me up more than being able to present wonderful collections as produced by no less than wonderful people. Thus showcasing the fine craftsmanship of Deborah Main and Frank Rogers is giving me great delight as Market draws near.

Each company is having their debut at this Spring 2016 Market. Please be sure to put a visit to ZAAR Design Center at Union Square on your Market Schedule. You can find us at 410 English Rd, E101 (Between Elm and Lindsey) and it’s on the bus line.  And anyone can contact me directly at 207.838.2675 of ruth@zaardesigncenter.com

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PG: I understand that Antiques by Zaar has been selling at High Point for 13 years? Aren’t you now in a larger and new location?

RO: From 2004- 2015 I moved my location 4 times/each time getting closer to the “heart of High Point”. For the first time in 7 years I am in a full-fledged permanent showroom that is on the bus line (red stop 26) and within walking distance from Market Square. Spring and Fall 2015 Market was my debut in this spanky new space. (I still hold a small warehouse space on West Market Center Drive for overflow.)  I LOVE my new space and feel it is what I needed!

PG: With Antiques by ZAAR, you specialize in Chinese Antiques and English Chesterfield sofas. That’s an interesting combination.  Can you tell us a little of the back story of why you only specialize in those two areas?

RO: I tend to say I got “tricked” into selling Chinese antiques. We moved to Maine, with our 3 pre-teens, after 8 years in Asia.  My husband, as a “house warming” gift bought a small shipment of Chinese Antiques. In retrospect ,I saw it as a trial run, as before I knew it we were buying a container and planning to set up a website for me to run the new business from home. (ZAAR = the initials of my kids , Zach, Arianna and Avery and mama Ruth to anchor it) With our first sale in 2000 we felt we had “made it” and starting January 2001- 2008 we purchased a 40’ high cube of antiques/reproductions every 2 months, with my husband going to Asia to hand pick everything in our collection.

2008 was a turning point year for many of us in the Home Furnishing Industry and we were not immune to effects of the economic downturn.  I stayed with the biz (Interior designers kept me in biz during recession!) and in 2010 I created ZAAR Design Center. Using Antiques by Zaar as the anchor and adding lines from other companies (this is how I met Distinctive Chesterfields, as they were looking for US representation) I offered year round exposure by having my facility open year round on an appointment basis. 

I love how the Chinese and Chesterfields complement each other so. My expertise lies in giving customers confidence in the product they are purchasing, the company they are buying from, and the process, which I work to make as seamless as possible.

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 We have an ever changing collection of “in stock” items in High Point that are available for “quick ship” and also serve to give customers an option to come and test sit the product/validating the quality of our pieces in person.  However, just like the antiques, the vast majority of my customers are buying product sight unseen.

 I remain interested in having the showroom in High Point  for 3 reasons:

  • to introduce ourselves to Trade folks that may not otherwise land on either company,
  • to validate our online presence with a showroom, and
  • for those that want to come and see for themselves, to give them that option.


PG: This market you are debuting two new artisan lines, Frank Rogers hand-crafted wrought iron tables from Mexico and luxury artisan pillows by Austin pillow designer, Deborah Main. Why did you select these two lines to begin carrying at your showroom?

RO: Just like the chesterfield connection, it’s a matter of who you meet and what product they have, and if you are a fit for each other. And timing has something to do with that as well. 

I have always called “ZAAR Design Center” my evolving entity and that it has been these past years and I’m FINALLY feeling like I’m getting my groove with what it should be and to whom.

High Point should serve more as a place of introduction, and as I said above, for those that can and need to, a place for them to see for themselves, whether it be during Market and otherwise. 

It’s a happy coincidence that both you (Deborah Main Designs) and Frank Rogers (the Mexico connection) are debuting with me and becoming part of my offerings. I LOVE that you are both high end artisans!

Frank Rogers is new to the US Market. (Introduced to him by an old Designer customer who encouraged each of us to connect.) I’ve known Frank for a few years now but only got together now. He has no US representation (Retail and wholesale). From the first time I saw his table I was enamored with his work and so am excited to now have the opportunity to grow his presence and sales in the States.

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 And as far as you and Deborah Main Designs, I saw you all over social media (in a good way) and Jana Platina Phipps, the Trim Queen, and I served as the conduit to connect us, the time seemed right for both of us. You have been selling for 12 years now and are eager to grow. I am happy to be one of 3 locations for your debut and hope that they all work for you to help you get to the next place you want to be in your business.  I also like our shared Asian connection.

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PG: Why is High Point Market such a good place for new lines to debut?

RO: For me it’s about great people having great product and a collaborative spirit to bring said product to the market place.  I have a very responsive email list of over 6,000 which I’ve grown over the past 17 years, and I have a good foot print on social media. With this (and a new website) and the great product offerings, I hope to increase the market share for each company that I work with and  make every sale a win(for you), win (for me) win (for the customer.) THAT, which can only be done with this collaborate Spirit, juices me up!

 PG: Lastly, I know you do High Point market twice a year, but you also have an online store and have your design center open year round by appointment, correct?  Please tell us where people can find your beautiful products during High Point and afterward as well? 

RO: During Market we are open at Union Square, which is at 410 English Rd, E 101. High Point, NC 27262.  (Red bus stop 26) Between Markets, the other months of the year, Union Square is open by Appointment.  

Online:  www.zaardesigncenter.com and  www.antiquesbyzaar.com

Distinctive Chesterfields has a retail website (need to go through me for trade pricing) at www.distinctivechesterfields.com/usa/

Frank Rogers has a website (no pricing) at www.frankrogers.com

and you, well your followers know to go to www.DeborahMainDesigns.com to shop and watch for the launch of your brand new website. But for trade pricing, they need to shop at ZAAR Design Center at High Point Market!


Thank you so much Ruth for taking the time out of your busy High Point Market prep schedule to answer a few questions for our readers to learn more about both your online retails stores and your wholesale showroom ZAAR Design Center.  It’s been great fun working together and a privilege you represent my line, Deborah Main Designs, thank you!! I Iook forward to a long-term collaboration.  Wishing you and all the vendors and showrooms at High Point a FABULOUS and successful market! Till next time, XO PG



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Two Little Secrets and The Inspiration Behind Modern Look Book

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It’s no surprise by now to anyone that is keeping up with our studio and the blog, that Deborah Main pillows are hitting the national scene one more time and are headed to TWO amazing places: High Point Market in N.C. AND Design On A Dime in NYC.  I haven’t filled you in on all the details yet, but that’s because I’ve been scrambling to keep up and get everything ready – design pillows, sew pillows, launch new website, create new press kit, write new pillow tags – you name it, our studio has been bustling with activity and many, many dear colleagues are helping out for the 2016 national push for the Deborah Main brand.  THANK YOU SO MUCH!!


So please keep reading our blog and watching for our spring newsletter (sign up for both HERE) coming out at the end of April, to take advantage of the exciting and fun promotions we’ll be offering throughout the year. You don’t have to be a customer (yet!) but you’ll only know about the specials if you’re on the list. And that means we’ll be communicating more with you, our future and loyal customers, friends, and followers.

We are SO excited and really feel that 2016 just might be our break out year….and this is in large part to YOU, and all your support behind our little Austin, Texas studio!!! THANK YOU!!

But none of this would be happening if not for me speaking up and putting myself out there.  I know you think, “Oh, it’s so easy for Deborah”, but in reality it’s not.

 It takes a long time to build relationships and to build confidence in a brand new industry that when I started I knew nothing about. In fact, it’s taken me 12 years!!

But today I feel different. Go ahead and take a peek at some of my earlier blog posts HERE to see what I’ve learned along the way.  Today I don’t feel like I have to prove myself anymore.  I’ve been making gorgeous pillows for 12 years now, and just in ONE month they will debut at High Point market, the largest home furnishing market in the U.S. AND New York City at one of THE events of the year Design On A Dime, benefiting Housing Works and sponsored by Elle Decor. No I haven’t won the jack pot. It’s damn hard work and I still have 10 more new accounts to secure this year, but things are moving forward and that is at least the right direction.

Here’s a sneak peek (not yet available on our website and better photos coming soon) of one of our new pillows using our vast collection of vintage French trim where I collaborate with talented wood turner Jeff Hornung of The Walnut Log Studio.  Some of you may know I absolutely LOVE wood and my collection of vintage French trim, so this is a dream come true!! And my inspiration for the collection occurred last year in Dallas at a talk on Color Trends by the delightful Patti Carpenter, shown HERE on Editor At Large.  More on that story in future blog posts. But I’m super stoked and can’t wait for you to see this design in NYC!!

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Little Secret #1: I have this tiny statue of a foot by my bed.  I received it from one of the showrooms at Las Vegas Market tour that I did with Jackie Von Tobel (you know, the tour that I haven’t had a minute to write any more about except that I met two of my idols, Christopher Guy and Thomas Pheasant). They gave us each a little foot to remind us new designers, new brands, to keep moving forward one step at a time toward our goals. It was a very simple gesture on their part and I’m sure they have NO idea how I’ve taken it to heart. I look at that little foot every day and in the morning give it a few steps and I’m on my way charting new uncharted territory for my brand, Deborah Main.

Now, you see why I’ve been SO excited and working like crazy to make this all come together.  In April I’ll talk more about my wonderful experiences of working long distance with two top international interior designers, Jonathan Legate and Kelli Ellis.

But for today’s blog post I wanted you to hear from Heather Karlie herself, the creative entrepreneur behind 20th Century by HKFA and Modern Look Book.



But first, a behind the scenes story.  And this is what I learned when I went to the Las Vegas Market from name brands like Christopher Guy, Thomas Pheasant, Julia Buckingham, Global Views, Brandon Smith of D Coop Media, Christopher Kennedy, Jackie Von Tobel, and many many more.

We all start in the same place, with a dream. And we learn and grow and make mistakes along the way. We take risks. Some work out. Some don’t. But never for a minute think that some famous interior or product designer or artist didn’t start, and struggle, just like you and me.  From an idea (and a wild and crazy idea I might add) comes the passion to do what we love! Go for it NOW!


Heather Karlie Vieira of 20th Century by HKFA started with an idea and it has grown into a highly curated business of antique and modern vintage finds that she hand-selects herself. Her own personal story made me think of mine and how we have to start somewhere and just keep on truckin.


Little Secret #2: So, my little secret is that I was up late one night and I happened upon this Modern Look Book concept and I thought, hmmm, that’s interesting…what’s that all about? I knew Heather Karlie was a dealer of vintage and antique furnishings, but I’ve never met her so I really didn’t know her background. And then, I read her personal story at 1 a.m. and I was feeling kind of down and discouraged and I emailed her my thoughts.  To my surprise she answered the next day and before you knew it I was one of the brands in her inaugural Modern Look Book.

My point?  You never know what leads to what.  I reached out to Heather at a vulnerable moment in the wee hours of the morning with some personal self doubts about my brand and she reached back.  And then it all took off from there. Thank you Heather!!


PG: What inspired you to create the Modern Look Book concept?

HK: Modern Look Book came about through relationships and friendships – it’s the ultimate in collaboration. My favorite interiors are ones that blend vintage finds with contemporary and custom pieces. That being said, I wanted to present this look, so I began with my showroom at High Point Market. I asked four wonderful colleagues, Deborah Main, Clintel Steed, Michael Penn and Martyn Feller if they would join me on this inaugural run. And all said, YES! I really couldn’t be happier to work with such amazing, creative talents!

PG: What do you hope to achieve with interior designers by debuting this concept at High Point this April?

HK: The Interior Designer community is who I have to thank for the Modern Look Book concept. Designers are the ultimate collaborators. It’s my hope to show the Interior Designer community that Modern Look Book is taking a page from their book on collaboration. I’d like to present a well thought out, cohesive interior from four distinct artists and brands alongside my collection of vintage finds. And I hope that this will inspire Interior Designers to continue to look to Modern Look Book for fresh, new, exciting artists and brands!


PG: How do you think the four artists/brands you selected complement your curated selection of vintage, antique and modern finds?

HK: This inaugural Modern Look Book collaboration features four incredible artists and brands –

Deborah Main and I are long time social media friends, following each other on various sites, and always supporting each other. Her creativity and use of vintage fabrics is really special.

Clintel Steed and I met many years ago in the New York City gallery of one of my clients. I was honored when he asked me to sit for a portrait in 2007 and we have been great friends ever since.

Michael Penn and I met back in Philadelphia through his fiancee Natasha, with whom I went to High School. I had always admired his photography, but it wasn’t until 2010 when he snapped a photo of me and my husband in Old City Philadelphia, that I began to know his amazing street photography.

Martyn Feller and I met well over ten years ago in New York City, where he was working as a model. Martyn had a great interest in all things vintage, so it was no surprise that we became fast friends. His incredible brand, Montauk Style, is as gorgeous as it is luxurious.

Sharing the history, is a big part of what I do as a dealer in vintage, antique and modern finds. The history. The story. These four artists and brands are also part of my story. A story that I am still writing and rewriting. And I couldn’t be happier than to have them as part of it!

Thank you so much Heather for sharing your story and ours in Modern Look Book!  Here’s a few more of Heather’s vintage finds below.  If you are an interior designer or retailer, here are the details all about Heather and her Booth #34 at the Antique & Design Center. Be sure to stop by!  Till then, stay tuned for more next week. XOPG



Experience the Luxury of Linen Sheets – Montauk Style Debuts at High Point!


Heads up interior designers, and consumers too, because one day what showcases at High Point Market in North Carolina will be in a store near you that you’ll be shopping in this year!  So, for today’s blog post,  I’d like to introduce you to one of the other brands that will be making their first High Point Market debut come April, Montauk Style Linens.

As I mentioned in my last blog post, “Modern Look Book Debuts with Artist Clintel Steed at High Point” Heather Karlie Vieria of 20th Century by HKFA is introducing an exciting new concept this coming market called Modern Look Book representing four up and coming artists & luxury brands, along with all her other fabulous vintage and antique finds that she so carefully curates.

The four featured Modern Look Book artists and brands are: painter Clintel Steed, photographer Michael Penn, luxury pillow designer Deborah Main, and luxury linen brand Montauk Style.

Montauk Linen is a great example of what a luxury brand is all about in today’s world – “The Experience”.

And that’s because owner Martyn Feller experienced pure linen sheets first hand and has never looked back. So we asked Martyn (below) the same three questions we asked artist Clintel Steed a couple weeks ago, and Martyn sure makes the case for the “Experience” of pure linen.

I know living in Texas many of us experience linen because it’s sometimes the ONLY thing to wear in our 100+ degree summers!  But have you ever slept in pure linen? (okay, no counting the time you forgot to change in your pajamas and crashed for the evening in what you wore that day!)


PG:  What inspires you to create your brand and why?

MF: One too many uncomfortable night’s sleep whilst traveling for work and a decade long underlying passion for design, travel and fashion was the impetus for launching Montauk Style Pure Linen.   Spending a third of our lives under the covers, Montauk Style strives to keep you bundled in soft, comfy, stylish linen, constructed to stand the test of time.

PG: What differentiates your brand from others in the home décor industry?

MF: Pure linen is renown for its relaxed, lived-in look and feel.  We wanted to create a brand that reflects the easy going lifestyle that goes hand in hand with beautiful, effortless objects in our homes.  Also important was to work in the ‘old school’ element of the fabric, a testament to a base textile that has endured for countless centuries.

PG: How will collaborating with 20th Century by HKFA and being part of the Modern Look Book concept at High Point help interior designers learn more about what you have to offer their clients?

MF: Montauk Style Pure Linen can centerpiece a modern minimal-styled bedroom or can compliment and flow harmoniously in a bedroom filled with antiques and vintage finds.  The chameleon characteristic of the product makes Montauk Style Pure Linen a versatile collaborator with 20th Century by HKFA brand as well as the Modern Look Book concept.

And there you have it my friends, pure and simple, Montauk Style Pure Linen is THE next luxury experience you should indulge in in 2016.  I can tell you the Pillow Goddess herself is going to give it a try very soon!


So be on the lookout for Montauk Style Pure Linens to be featured in Heather’s Booth #34 (below) in the Antique & Design Center at High Point Market, April 16 – 20th, 2016. (Hmmm, how timely, since that’s my birthday/anniversary weekend…hint hint to my husband, some new sheets my dear?)


April really is THE best month of the year, so stay tuned, because we’ve got lots more to share in the coming weeks. Till then, think about enveloping yourself in soft Montauk Style Pure Linens. I know I will!  XO PG







Modern Look Book Debuts with Artist Clintel Steed at High Point!


Wow, what a whirlwind of a week and it’s only the first week of March!!  There’s simply so much going on – from the west coast last month with Modernism Week (See my post from last week)  – to the east coast with THE largest home furnishings market in the USA, the big High Point Market, coming up April 16 – 20th. (And I just got back from a one day trip to Dallas to meet with a client and surprise our TOP account, Casa di Lino, on their 10th anniversary of being in business, of which 8 of those years they’ve carried the Deborah Main luxury pillow line – Congratulations!!!)


But one common thread through these two coastal power events is Heather Karlie Vieira (above), owner of 20th Century by HKFA.  Heather, a talented antique and vintage collector, had some of her vintage beauties showcased in the gorgeous master suite designed by Justin Saulis (below)  at the Christopher Kennedy Compound last month – the stunning vintage 3 pronged lamp I’m still swooning over because of it’s fabulous shape, let along Justin’s gorgeous color palette. But now, Heather is back on the east coast launching the brand new  Modern Look Book concept at High Point Market this spring.


I’ve been dying to share with you Heather’s EXCITING and brilliant concept Modern Look Book debuting alongside all her highly curated vintage, antique and modern collection of furnishings at High Point Market in April, because she will represent four on-the-rise artists & brands – Deborah Main pillows , Michael Penn photography, Montauk Style linens, and our featured artist today – Clintel Steed.

NONE of these artists & brands (including yours truly!) have ever had their work showcased at High Point Market, so this is an incredible honor to be represented by Heather Karlie Vieira of 20th Century by HKFA as part of her debut concept Modern Look Book.

Calling all interior designers, retailers and press who go to High Point Market, please be sure to stop by Heather’s booth #34 (MS-G-34, ADC) in the Antique & Design Center. (Read all about her listing and #hpmkt location HERE). And follow the hashtag #hpmkt from now through the market on Twitter and Intsagram, because just yesterday Lisa Ferguson of DecorMentor hosted her semi-annual fast & furious Twitter chat giving all who followed a sneak peek into 8+ designer picks to expect at High Point next month. Here’s Lisa’s favorite eight (below), but be sure to check out her Facebook Page for ALL the designer’s picks.


Now onto our first featured artist of the Modern Look Book, NYC-based painter, Clintel Steed. 

Below are three of his most recent works, the two on the left are titled “Beijing Smog #8 and #9″ oil on masonite, and the 3rd, “City Building #2″, which is also the painting below.

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We asked Clintel Steed a few questions:

PG: What inspires you to create your art and why?

CS: Being in the moment is what inspires me!! When I am conscious, the subject matter  is all around me!!!

PG: What differentiates your work from others in the home décor industry?

CS: I am not really concerned with where my work is shown right now!! It’s not about ego for me it’s about beauty and I just want to show my work to people who want to see it!!!

PG: How will collaborating with 20th Century by HKFA and being part of the Modern Look Book concept at High Point help interior designers learn more about what you have to offer their clients?

CS: I think by joining up with HKFA I am just giving my work more of a chance to be seen!! Which is the goal of any artist I believe!! Work is made to be seen, not live in closet!!!

And here are a few other creative works by Clintel Steed that I really like for their multitude of color, shape, and texture. He paints everything from portraits to cityscapes to aerial views, to money and more.  What is so unique about his paintings, as with many a painter, is that they are painted from how Clintel perceives the world….and I love it!!  To me, Clintel offers a never-before-seen unique vision, seeing his world from a different lens, then say the camera or another painter. If you want to learn more about what makes Clintel tick, here’s a fascinating interview, done in 2012 by ARTAlmalgamated, about Clintel Steed’s unique work.




I’ll be featuring the other artists and brands in the Modern Look Book, whose work Heather Karlie Vieira, with 20th Century by HKFA, will be debuting at High Point April 16 – 20th.  So be sure to sign up for our blog HERE so you can be ready to beeline it for Booth #34 (MS-G-34, ADC) in the Antique & Design Center come April.

For further information on the Modern Look Book, or if you’d like a copy of the Press Release, please contact heather@heatherkarlie.com  Till next week, have a beautiful weekend XO PG

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From Vegas to Palm Springs – Modern Color & Texture Inspires!

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I can’t help it…but with this gorgeous weather in Austin and clear, blue skies, I really want to be poolside, either at Austin’s well-known jewel, Barton Springs Pool (which is essentially just down the hill from my studio), or out in Palm Springs at Modernism Week.  Kind of like interior designer, King of Modernism himself, Christopher Kennedy, below.

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I met Christopher for the very first time here in Austin at an interior designer event a couple years ago. When I heard his personal story and his love for Mid-century modern, well, I’ve been smitten ever since. He’s not only uber talented, but a friend and also just a really great guy. And Christopher, known for his incredible Mid-century modern interior designs, not only has his own line of modern furnishings, a new store, and a new book (his book signing below was at the Vegas market), but he magically (with a lot of hard work!) produces the “#1 Must-See Event”Christopher Kennedy Compound , each year for Modernism Week.



Be sure to keep reading, because I’m going to feature a few of the talented interior designers that are featured in The Christopher Kennedy Compound going on right now at Modernism Week. The full list of the select interior designers, “The TasteMakers”, and the sponsors for the 2016 showhouse are listed above. I am fortunate to know two of them, and met four more while on the VIP Tour in Vegas.

But if you want to meet this incredible talent for yourself, you’d better hurry because you only have FOUR more days to high tail it out to Palm Springs to see all this Mid-century Modern Magnificence during Modernism Week!!


This image above of ALL the talented interior designers invited by Christopher to style a room in the compound is such a wonderfully, happy, colorful image that’s popping up all over social media for Modernism Week. The green of that lawn is totally inspiring as you’ll see throughout this post!!

But first I want to catch you up with what’s been happening so far this year at Deborah Main Designs’ studio.  Phew, what a busy 2016 it has been, but I’m loving it!! Many of you who follow us on Social Media, know we were fortunate enough to attend the Vegas Red Carpet Tour at the end of January with Jackie Von Tobel of Soft Design Lab.  Another super star in the world of design, Jackie sure knows how to give a VIP Tour and I was thrilled to meet her in person and many other interior designers. Below is a photo of our fun group and the names and faces of all who attended.



And below is a funny pic of me I think, because it reminds me of King Kong, as my body looks superimposed onto the image while men are running away from me, or toward me, in the background. LOL!!

Flee, it’s Deborah Main about to take on the World Market Center in Vegas!!

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It was my first time EVER in Vegas (“Vegas Virgin”, I think they call it!) and I have lots to share with you about this exciting trip over the next month. My incredible experience at the Las Vegas Market is intricately connected to why I’m talking about color and texture in Mid-century modern on the blog today.  For those who’ve heard of the fabulous time period, but may not be as familiar with it, it happens to be one of my FAVES!  Here’s a quick Wikipedia definition for you:

“Mid-century modern is an architectural, interior, product and graphic design that generally describes mid-20th century developments in modern design, architecture and urban development from roughly 1933 to 1965. The term, employed as a style descriptor as early as the mid-1950s, was reaffirmed in 1983 by Cara Greenberg in the title of her book, Mid-Century Modern: Furniture of the 1950s (Random House), celebrating the style that is now recognized by scholars and museums worldwide as a significant design movement.” – Wikipedia


In the spring I particularly love to break out all the colorful textiles I have that inspire me, like this Mid-century modern one above of a Vera Neumann silk scarf transformed into a one-of-a-kind pillow.

And that’s also why I get so inspired by Modernism Week because it just brings that “Rat Pack” era back alive with incredible architecture, fabulous furnishings and colorful interior design.

Here’s a Mid-century modern chair, the David Chair, below, designed by Christopher Kennedy, that I absolutely love, particularly in that mustard color.  I’m hoping someday to remodel our family/dining room into a Mid-century modern haven with maybe a reading chair like Christopher’s for my husband, who also happens to be named David. A great birthday or anniversary gift for the hubs, don’t you think?


Below are two 1960’s gowns with all the Palm Springs colors that I can’t wait to make into luxury one-of-a-kind pillows!  That green striped textile below pops out just like that perfectly manicured lawn with all the interior designers (at the beginning of this post). How can you not love bright and sunny colors in the spring time??  And, if you’ve been following our blog (you can sign up for it HERE) you know we LOVE to up-cycle and re-purpose vintage dresses into fabulous pillows.

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Almost identical colors to these motel rooms in Palm Springs!


And before I move onto to the cool geometric blue textiles and design, I want you to meet Julia Buckingham, one of this year’s “Tastemakers”, whom Christopher selected to design one of the bedrooms in the Christopher Kennedy Compound.

In Palm Springs, Modernism Week is celebrating it’s 10th year, so it’s a very big deal, and an incredible honor, to be one of the lucky interior designers to be asked to design for Christopher’s compound.

And we have just a peak of a few of the designs below. But first, my introduction to the Chicago-based interior designer, Julia Buckingham in the gorgeous Global Views showroom at the Las Vegas Market.  Julia is an incredibly talented interior designer known for her style she calls “Modernique”. I still can’t believe she debuted her new line for Global Views in Dallas at the 2015 June Market and I totally missed it!!

But it was well worth the wait to meet this lovely designer in Vegas at The Las Vegas Market. I had heard, read, and seen on social media so much about Julia’s new line, that I was dying to see it in person and meet her too.  (You can read more about Julia Buckingham Collection for Global Views HERE).

Below is her infamous “Wiggle” chair. And WOW, it is amazing in person as well as the “Steamer” rug!!  To me, the colors, patterns and styles of her collection for Global Views speak of Mid-century modern.

“The new Julia Buckingham for Global Views Collection celebrates the journey of design and encourages people to not just decorate, but to curate their spaces in a personal and meaningful way. The collection will include a selection of furniture, lighting, rugs, tabletop and home accessories by the Chicago-based designer.” – Julia Buckingham for Global Views

The boldness of the colors and pattern in the chair and rug are amazing to me!!! There is nothing out there in home decor or interiors like this truly spectacular collection by Julia. That’s what I love about it…it is so different!!  And you know we at Deborah Main Designs love the unique!

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Our Vegas group below touring the Global Views showroom and Julia’s collection. I personally had never stepped foot in a Global Views showroom and I was in absolute awe of the stunning array of luxury furnishings!!  Be sure to follow our blog, because I’ll be writing and showing more photos of the Global Views showroom and more showrooms in the coming weeks.

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I was just thrilled beyond words to finally meet this design icon, Julia Buckingham, in person. And she’s just like everyone talks about….as sweet as can be.

And with my 1960’s light blue coat, trimmed with fox fur, adorned with a vintage sea urchin brooch….well, it sent Julia and I, and even one of the owners of Global Views, into shared excitement for collecting vintage brooches.

Not to mention the fabulous dress that Julia was wearing which so reminded me of some amazing 1940’s Mid-century fabric I had in my collection with gold painted over it. She immediately knew I was a little different when I started shooting photos of her dress!! Ha! ha!  :-)

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One of Global Views’ delightful owners above, Frederick Rayner, showing me his vintage cuff links which turned into a wonderful discussion and show & tell on his phone of vintage brooches.

I could talk for hours on collecting vintage brooches and textiles and had a blast chatting with Frederick at Global Views!

The detail of Julia’s gorgeous dress (which I’m sorry I cannot remember the designer) reminds me of many incredible textiles from the 1940’s -1960’s with gold metallic painted on them. Thankfully, Mid-century textiles, color and texture still permeate and inspire new fashion and interior design.  How lucky we are!!

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Below is Julia with our Vegas VIP Tour leader, Jackie Von Tobel of Soft Design Lab, and one of the presenters on our first day at Las Vegas Market, Scot Meachum Wood.  Stay tuned on Pillow Goddess for more about the rugs that Jackie and Julia designed for Feizy Rugs and the presentation that Scot and other designers did coming soon.

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And Julia is one of the “Tastemakers” for Christopher Kennedy’s Compound this year at Modernism Week. Here’s a sneak peek below of her bedroom design. Wow, what I’d give for a room that stepped right out to the pool. I asked the hubs last night if we could retire to Palm Springs??  He looked at me with that look “Are you crazy”? Oh well, it was worth a try.

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I love the colors Julia selected for the bedding. I”m sorry I don’t know more details about it, but it will surely be all over social media, on many blogs and written up very soon in Traditional Home, one of the sponsors of the showhouse. So be sure to keep a watch for more great press on the Christopher Kennedy Compound!

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Here’s a polka dot gown (below) in our 1960’s textile collection that totally reminds me of some of the colors Julia selected for her showhouse bedroom above and her “Steamer” rug for Global Views below.

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Now Julia will kill me I’m sure for this…but doesn’t the cool heel of her shoes look awesome with her rug?  I love the colored and clear heels in fashion today! Now how fun is that!!

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Now onto the cool blues.


There’s nothing like the blue sky and cool water of a pool out in the Palm Springs desert that will get you thinking about all the incredible pops of color from the 1950’s and 60’s. Below is the kitchen for this year’s showhouse, designed by none other than, the King of Mid-century himself, Christopher Kennedy.  If you follow #ModernismWeek and #ChristopherKennedyCompound on Twitter or Instagram you will most certainly see more of the fabulous designs by Christopher and the other interior designers involved.

I love the glass pendants in Christopher Kennedy’s design, because they remind me so much of all the blues and greens so popular in the Mid-century interiors and the “glass floats” used years ago by fisherman.


Here is a pair of our Redbrick Modern pillows handcrafted with vintage Barkcloth that we at the Deborah Main studio love because of that same lime green and royal blue that is so prominent throughout Mid-century design.


And here are some fabulous blue and white geometric textiles below that we can’t wait to get started on creating luxury pillows with!  Which reminds me….we have a lot of exciting new changes coming up this year for Deborah Main Designs, like our NEW Essentials Collection and more. So be on the look out and follow us on Instagram @deborahmaindesigns and Twitter @deborahmain or sign up for our quarterly newsletter to get the full scoop coming up in late spring. Hint – new website on the horizon!

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One of the other interior designers, who is a home-grown Texas gal and a knockout designer, is the fabulous Dallas-based, Denise Mcgaha.  I have not had an opportunity yet to work with Denise, but I met her in Dallas a couple years ago at one of the #SneakPeeks for bloggers at Dallas Market.  She not only “Designs with a Deadline”, her signature trademark of designing within 90 days, and dresses to the nines with style, but look what she did with a laundry room below at the Christopher Kennedy Compound?

That’s what I love about talented interior designers like Julia, Denise, Christopher and all the other “Tastemakers” for the Showhouse, is they really know how to make every room of a home, from a master suite, to a kitchen to even a laundry room, feel curated and meaningful, one you’d want to spend a lot of time in.

Denise Mcgaha’s laundry room for The Christopher Kennedy Compound is so gorgeous with Mid-century colors, textures, and patterns, that I am totally inspired to make my laundry room into something spectacular.  I love Denise’s choice of colors, the wallpaper in an awesome retro pattern, and the ’60’s vibe with the rope chandelier. Very tropical and desert at the same time!



And last but not least, during the VIP Red Carpet Las Vegas Market Tour, we enjoyed THREE book signings, one of which was Christopher Kennedy’s new book, California Modern.  Here I am with Christopher in the VERY cool Zuo Mod Showroom.

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And here I am (below), before Jackie ushers us out to an over-the-top exciting final private cocktail party (more on that in March), having a blast in the Zuo Mod Providence Arm Chair in Blue Velvet!  WOW, did I love that modern showroom and chair!!

I hope I’ve inspired you to either hop on a plane to Palm Springs to check out all the cool modern design, or hire one of these amazing interior designers for your next interior home project.  You’ll be glad you did!  Till next time, stay warm in the Northeast, and bask in the sun in the Southwest.  XO, PG

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