Wednesday, April 25, 2012

My Q&A with Designer Tim Clarke

Life isn't just good for Tim Clarke life is GREAT for Tim Clarke! This surfer dude with his  laid back quintessential California "good boy" looks is riding high with the release of his book  this month Coastal Modern., and just launched his own brand of coastal inspired candles.  Clarke is hands down the trail blazer and leader in the Coastal Modern design concept and is sought after by  an" A" list clientele who want a modern beach house look. Clarke is known for taking unique spaces and  turning them into  relaxed, livable, sophisticated and elegant spaces with modern classicism.

 After a year and a half of blogging, my coastal and seaside interior design blog caught the eye of a  huge presence in the interior design industry!  I received an email, from Tim Clarke's press publicist. Chaz Brewer. My "little" blog got his attention! I had written a brief post  about Tim's new book, his work, and my love for his designs.In that post I  dubbed his work as " Coastal Cool"  Brewer asked if I would be interested in doing a brief interview with Tim??" Are you kidding me'?   It was that small catch phrase and Chaz's like of  my blog that scored me  a brief Q & A with Tim and  I am ecstatic to bring it to you !

Tim, Thank you so much for taking the time out of your very  busy schedule to answer a few questions . I know my readers are very anxious to hear what questions I have chosen and your responses. So here it goes!
Photography by Lisa Romerein

1)  What design tips can you give for keeping coastal homes classic and timeless?

Keep it simple. Choose upholstery in classic shapes and cover with solid neutrals. Think about a white shirt and khaki pants. Then accessorize with colorful, patterned pillows and a throw that can be changed out seasonally. Don’t paint your walls some dramatic "fashiony" color. Keep them in a nice hue of grayed white (like China White from Pratt and Lambert) and then hang art that adds the color you're feeling at the moment. Arrange the furniture symmetrically and don’t have too many little tables. A symmetrically arranged room with plenty of space around the pieces for circulation, never goes out of style. 

2)  Coastal Modern is divided into 5 distinct styles. Which one speaks to YOU the most?

One of the reasons I do what I do is that my personal style is always changing. My career allows me to explore a lot of different styles so that I don’t get bored. That being said, today, I am loving Seaside Mediterranean. Maybe it’s the change of season but I really love the washed out, kissed by the sun, colors of this particular style. I also really love reclaimed pale wood floors and plaster walls without much detail around the windows and doors. I feel there's a coziness to this style without being dark or moody.

3)  I understand that you recently launched your own coastal candle collection while celebrating the release of Coastal Modern in Hawaii. What was your inspiration when creating the scents for the three different candles (Coastal Dawn, Coastal Day, and Coastal Dusk)?

My book is designed to transport readers to another place. Maybe it's a great vacation, a fantasy place they'd like to live, or maybe it's just a memory. As much as the photos take you there, I think the sense of smell is a very powerful tool that further accentuates the experience. 

Each fragrance is designed to remind you of a particular time of day. Dawn at the coast is crisp, clean—maybe you are freshly showered and just starting your day at the beach. Coastal Dawn smells like that salty morning air with a mix of seaside grasses. Coastal Day blends slight notes of coconut with a touch of vanilla bean and cream. The scent reminds me of suntan lotion and the natural aroma of sand that's enhanced by the warm, midday sun. As the sun begins to set on the beach, you might be walking outside or spending time reflecting with your friends. Coastal Dusk is reminiscent of that evening air which is filled with the scent of night-blooming tuberose and mixed with soft notes of jasmine, gardenia, and ylang-ylang. The fragrance reminds me of a stroll in warm, tropical air.

4)  You are the leader in coastal modern design! I live on the East Coast. In your own words, how would you define coastal modern design on the East Coast?

Coastal Modern design is definitely rooted in the history of the great beach towns of the East. The wooden houses, with shingles and simple wood details all painted in shades of gray and white, can feel very modern when cleaned up and simplified. If you take away the layers, choose fewer things, and remove the nautical references, all of a sudden, the architecture begins to feel less country and more modern.

5)  Do you have a favorite artist, designer, architect or other person that inspires you and/or your designs?

I love the work of Donald Judd. I'm very into plywood right now. He was really the first to craft amazing, simple furniture out of plain sheets of plywood. His designs are still inspiring today and the town where he started (Marfa, TX) is one of my favorite places—even without a beach!

6)  What are your three "must haves" for Spring/Summer 2012?

Tommy Bahama Beach Chairs: I have tried so many but on my most recent trip to Hawaii, we rented chairs at the beach that were terrific! I love the navy or red Tommy Bahama beach chairs. They're lightweight with backpack straps, a pillow, and a little mesh drink holder. Comfortable and easy. I just ordered a pair for myself with an umbrella to match (

Faded Navajo Dhurries: Change out your rugs for the summer! By layering these colorful, flat-woven rugs, you can add a little bit of "ethnic surfer chic" to your Family Room. I love the Aztec style patterns in faded orange, blue, or pink.

Custom Vintage Rolex: The colorful custom faces of these stainless steel watches come in all kinds of great colors on (orange, pink, green, and bright blue). I think I want a pink one.

 Keep up on  all the latest with  Tim here!

Official Twitter: @TimClarkeDesign 
Official Facebook:
Upcoming book signings!

"To our lucky friends in the Southern California area, Tim has two upcoming book signings! He will be at Juxtapostion in Newport Beach on Saturday, May 5th from 1PM-4PM ( and SoLo in Solana Beach on Saturday, May 12th from 2PM-4PM ( Stop by if you're in the area and pick up a book!"

 What makes the book aesthetically pleasing is the book moves from dawn to dusk !

 If you love Tim's work as much as I do, go out  and purchase his book!
Tim was kind enough to autograph a copy of his book for me! I am anxiously awaiting its arrival!

 I hope you all enjoyed this as much as I did !It was a blast to do and Tim and Chaz couldn't be more gracious or accommodating! Thank you again !!



Everything Coastal said...

Very nice Linda! I have been a fan of Tim Clarke's for a few years now - love the look of coastal that is not kitschy and overdone, and he's got that down to a science. I am still devouring his new book!


Shorely Chic said...

This is such a great post!! I'm so excited you got to "meet" Tim, an all time favorite of mine!

<3 Liz

Anonymous said...

Well done Linda! Keep on coasting! Chaz

Mary Ann Pickett said...

Looks like a great book! I love Juxtaposition....but I won't be in town. Darn~!

kim @ whitebarnbasics said...

I'm gonna check out his candles!!! thanks! btw in your last post I think the elephant was my favorite! Absolutely loved them all, though!