With a Bachelor's Degree in Industrial Engineering and Interior Design studies in New York and Barcelona, luxury high-end designer, Margarita Bravo, brings a technical, creative yet down-to-earth approach to her interaction with her clients. With locations in Denver, Aspen, Montecito, and most recently Miami, Margarita Bravo is a full-service design and interior design studio that serves a discerning clientele, including Coastal Carolina. We caught up with her to discuss her approach to coastal design.
By Chris Martin
Bravo approaches each project with the same mindset: focus on the client’s ambitions and weaves in her own creativity along the way. From filling the client’s new home with everything from caviar to champagne, sourcing goods worldwide, and even ensuring your towels are stacked immaculate, her attention to detail is immaculate. We caught up with Bravo to pick her brain about the latest in Coastal design.
How would you describe your design style?
My design style is client focused and incredibly personalized. We take a full cycle approach to all aspects of the project. I hone in on exactly what the client wants, from there I design their dream space through my lens of luxury and functionality.
What does a beautiful home mean to you?
A beautiful home is a functional home. Intentional spaces that create moments to connect, relax and reinvigorate. The most beautiful homes are those that are lived in and loved.
How do you approach designing a coastal home?
A coastal home presents unique design challenges and opportunities. I use my creativity, education, design expertise and intuition to intentionally design spaces that are timeless but with unexpected finishes that reflect my clients personalities and lifestyle. With coastal homes you have to pay particular attention to storage and entry ways. You need quick access to beach ready gear, jackets, cozy blankets and all other items that encompass outdoor living without cluttering up your space. Creating nooks for towels, surf boards, umbrellas with easy access that is also easy to keep clean is a must.
What’s the difference between Beachy & Coastal in interior design terms?
Typically when you think of beachy, it has a bit of a kitschy vibe. Cue shades of blue and subdued greens, rattan chairs, textiles of cotton and linen. Coastal is an elevated take on beachy, it’s still light and bright with natural elements, but with deeper color palettes and expanded textures and fabrics.
The hottest trend right now in coastal design?
Clients are looking for open spaces that evoke peaceful and casual feelings in your everyday life. A mix of earthy tones and playful textures is definitely having a moment. We’re also seeing a gravitation towards a timeless trend, which is less will always be more.
What is the color palette of the moment?
It’s all about the beach tones this summer! Rich, earthy neutral tones paired with soft seafoam greens, blues and sand colors.
Essential elements in creating a coastal sanctuary?
A coastal sanctuary is the ultimate moment of respite. You want it to feel like the personification of a meditation soundtrack, inviting, calming, invigorating, relaxing. Think of grounding materials like light woods, rich textures, breezy pops of color. An abundance of natural light is always a must. Look for window dressing that frames the room without overwhelming and allows for both natural light to seep in and privacy when needed.
Where do you shop for the best homewares?
As a designer I love my homewares! Of course, I’ve seen it all, and I love so many places to source unique items that truly elevate a space while reflecting my clients unique personality. Some of my favorite spots are Nest Casa for rarified finds, Violetas Home Design for collectible worldly exclusives, Monica James for craftsmanship pieces, just to name a few.
What is one piece of interior design advice you always give to clients?
I always tell clients that this project is more than a design, it’s a precious home, the sanctuary where you will spend the majority of your time and create memories. It’s critical to design a space that compliments and elevates each client's individual lifestyle and needs. We are always careful to be thoughtful when designing spaces for families, making sure it’s timeless and can evolve as the family grows. We truly examine the best use of the space and accentuate areas and furniture that are useful no matter what.
What is your most treasured possession at home?
An art piece by Romero Britto, that I have in my living room above my sofa. It’s a focal point of that room and makes me smile when I look at it and make my coffee.
Where is your ideal Coastal sanctuary?
Nice, France. A truly dreamy place that I continually visit!