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STYLE / FALL HOME DESIGN : INNER VISIONS : Three Up-and-Coming L.A. Designers Share Their Thoughts--and a Trade Secret or Two--on How to Make a Home Your Own : ANTONIA HUTT

October 08, 1995|Barbara Thornburg

When she designs for her clients, Antonia Hutt often pairs sophisticated antiques and sumptuous fabrics with offbeat paint colors. "I like to put hot colors next to cool ones: hot pink and mint green, lilac and saffron," she says. "They're combinations that surprise and make people go oooh !" The English-born Hutt uses these hues to elegant effect in her own Beverly Hills apartment, where the colonial-style furnishings include everything from 19th-Century Indian raj chairs to mosquito netting from Pier 1 Imports. Hutt, 32, says her exotic yet classical style no doubt comes from the years she spent as a globe-trotting fine-antiques buyer and jewelry designer. And from her infatuation with the eccentric tastes of English decorator Anthony Redmile and Italian architect Renzo Mongiardino. But she also appreciates witty touches: starfish and seahorses on top of framed perfume ad, lamps with fuchsia shades and real coral finials, doors designed with Indian palaces in mind. "The doors have been blue, then green; now they're back to red," she says. "It's often a project I do when I'm avoiding the laundry."

* STYLE: Raj

* SECRET SOURCES: Singh Imports, Culver City; Charles Jacobsen, West Hollywood; antique stores in Chinatown.

* INSPIRATION: "Rose Tarlow, my former teacher and mentor, for her sense of delicacy and purity of design."

* FAVORITE FABRIC: Egyptian cotton.

* TRICK OF THE TRADE: "Mount clip frames from Aaron Brothers, then hang them with clear nylon so they look like they're floating."

* DESIGN PHILOSOPHY: "Every interior should have a sense of humor."

MICHAEL BERMAN

When Michael Berman was 7, he insisted on painting his bedroom walls apple green; at 10, he was rearranging the family living room. "I always knew I wanted to be an interior designer," he says with a smile. Now, in addition to his own firm, Berman, 35, designs a line of modernist furniture and accessories called "R O O M S." Reminiscent of the glamorous styles of the '30s and '40s, the collection blends gracefully with vintage and contemporary classics in his Streamline Moderne home in the Hollywood Hills. And although Berman favors strong "organic" shades, such as chocolate brown for the dining room, he's still crazy for chartreuse and celadon. "Green is a beautiful backdrop for furnishings." And, he adds, "it's a color everyone can relate to."

* STYLE: Hollywood Modern

* INSPIRATIONS: 1939 World's Fair in New York; Hollywood glamour of the '30s and '40s; designers Paul Frankl and Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann.

* SECRET SOURCES: J.F. Chen Antiques and Futurama, both in Los Angeles.

* FAVORITE PAINT COLORS: "I like muted rather than shocking--colors people can live with for a long time."

* FAVORITE OBJECT: Vintage photos in unexpected frames.

* TRICK OF THE TRADE: "To give a small room the illusion of spaciousness, use a few large pieces of furniture."

* DESIGN ADVICE: "Always ask yourself: 'Would I get tired of this in six months?' "

DUSTY DEYOE

Dusty Deyoe has turned a weekend passion for shopping estate sales and flea markets into a way of life. She's stocked her 3-year-old store, Company, to the rafters with vintage furniture and accessories and recently opened Heaven on La Brea, a custom upholstory shop, next door. She has little time to decorate for herself, but Deyoe has made her newish apartment look as if she's lived in it forever. "It's full of things that have been passed down from generation to generation," the 34-year-old entrepreneur says. "Not from my family but others, of course." She has a knack for finding quirky pieces, then fixing and mixing them for a cozy feel. Pillows wear old and new textiles; drapes and lamps come from secondhand stores. And what she doesn't buy, she barters, like the faux -gilt cupid candelabra (at right) she got from a friend who wanted her carved sofa. The Deyoe aesthetic in a nutshell? "Nothing should be thrown away because everything can be refurbished or recycled."

* STYLE: Neo-ancestral

* SECRET SOURCES: Estate sales held by All Manor of Things, Beverly Hills; the Rose Bowl Flea Market (during dealers hours, from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m.), Pasadena.

* FAVORITE PAINT COLORS: "Painting a room yellow is like bringing sunshine into the room. It makes you feel really good."

* FAVORITE OBJECTS: Old floral paintings, vintage textiles and "monkey objets d'art ."

* TRICK OF THE TRADE: "Hang a decorative wrought-iron remnant above the bed as a headboard and tie lacey fabric off to either side."

* DESIGN ADVICE: "Collect only things you love."

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