How to Get a Designer Show House Look

Four of the designers from this year’s Kips Bay Decorator Show House share how you can copy their designs in your own home.

​Designer show houses, like the famous Kips Bay one in Manhattan, are chock full of beautiful and creative ideas — there is literally something for everyone. To see exactly how the Kips Bay Decorator Show House designers pull their looks together, and how you can get a similar look in your own home.


Photo by Marco Ricca

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Wesley Moon of Wesley Moon Inc.

The Wet Bar

Wesley Moon started by creating a custom mural from hi-res images from the Metropolitan Museum of Art online and Photoshopping them to fit the walls, even tweaking the colors to go with his palette. “I had it digitally printed at and applied as wallpaper,” says Moon. “This is an in expensive and totally custom way of getting the backdrop I wanted. Anyone can achieve a similar look with any hi-res image you like!”

Photos by Marco Ricca

In addition he is known for having pattern and texture everywhere in his rooms. “For example, in the elevator landing – a very small space, by the way – the floors, the walls, and the ceiling all had patterns and textures,” says Moon. “The mirror was festooned with feathers and very detailed and exuberant. Even the wall sconces had texture in the carved bronze… yet, the space still felt peaceful and much larger than it was. The key is that not one thing in the room really screamed ‘look at me!’ Yes, the mirror was a show-stopper, but it was tempered by all the other elements in the room because it was all on the same visual volume. So, the take-away is that you can mix patterns and textures, you just have to be consistent with your color scheme and keep everything on the same level.”


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Photo by Nikolas Sargent

Clive Christian Interiors


Clive Christian Interiors designed the kitchen in the show house this year. Their philosophy for kitchen design is to layer “jewelry.”

Photo by Nikolas Sargent

“It is important to start with good bones and functionality at the heart of the kitchen design. Then you layer in the jewelry, such as the baccarat chandeliers, leather interiors, and exquisite hardware.”

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Photo by Costas Picadas

Marcia Tucker of Marcia Tucker Interiors LLC

Dressing Room and Master Bathroom

For a dressing room, Marcia Tucker suggests choosing a room you don’t necessarily use often and where you can take some time for yourself. For the color palette, she suggests choosing one. “Choose one color palette and stick with it when designing your space, in order to make your dressing room cozy and consistent,” says Tucker. “Blush, or other delicate tones, are great options that can turn any space into a haven of calm and order.”

And pay attention to the lighting. “Flattering lighting is especially important, not only for trying on clothes, but also to create a soothing ambience,” adds Tucker. “Even if you are working with one small corner of a bedroom, you can still personalize it with trays and fresh flowers to create an oasis where you can actually enjoy your clothes.”

Photo by Costas Picadas

For the master bathroom, she says to turn it into a sanctuary. Here she used soft wooden accents and incorporated lush greenery. “Feature lively touches of green throughout the room by bringing in plants for the countertops or as accessories for the bathtub and shower,” says Tucker. “Live plants, or even a plant wall, will serve as a peaceful backdrop and contrast the organic tones that wood paneling brings. Neutral, monochromatic tones and white towels instantly add to the spa-inspired feel.”


Photo by Marco Ricca

Brian del Toro of Brian del Toro Inc.


“I think the key to creating an impactful room, like the one I did at Kips Bay is to select a dramatic focal point for the room,” says Brian del Toro. “This could be your windows, a great bed, especially a four-poster bed to give height, or a wonderful piece of art work. Don’t let your bedroom be boring!

For a bedroom color palette, he suggests choosing soothing colors you love. “Your bedroom is your haven from your busy outside life. The colors should calm you,” says del Toro.

“Pick fabrics that feel luxurious to you; the bedroom is not the place to pick flat, boring fabrics,” says del Toro. “A visual sense as well as a tactile sense of luxury will keep the room feeling sexy.”

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