Queer Eye's resident design expert, Bobby Berk, totally gets the whole minimalism thing.
"Minimalism is about living with what you need," says the Netflix star, after learning that this month, the Lonny team are all about it.
"It’s a way of living where you’re not overwhelmed by everything around you, where you’re able to focus on the things that you love and enjoy — without letting yourself get drowned out by the things that you don’t."
It's befitting, then, that the interior designer's most recent project — captured during season three's debut episode of the revived Netflix series— involves a total interior and exterior overhaul, for one willing participant.
To learn more about what fans of the show can expect this season, we caught up with Berk to discuss cleansing the kitchen, revamping the bedroom space, and why you seriously shouldn't underestimate a good hammock.
Lonny: How important is function when it comes to redecorating?
BB: The smaller the space, the more your real estate needs to function for you. Good, thoughtful design, is almost twice as important when working with a small space, because every square inch needs to function.
We love the splash of green throughout this project. What prompted this use of color?
It was a color that was on the welcome mat at the front door of the house. Actually, the entire color palette used for the house was inspired by their doormat.
Do you have a favorite room?
The bedroom! We took a space that initially didn’t function at all — it was really quite small and depressing — and we made it functional.
Favorite piece of furniture?
The bed we made (for the homeowner, Thomas). It had a cool headboard built into the wall, and created a lot of drama in that room and drew your eyes up. It also gave the room more space because it was connected to the wall.
How do you think the newly revived space now best reflects the homeowners' lifestyle?
Before, the home reflected Thomas’s reclusive lifestyle — he didn’t go out much, and was likely a bit depressed. Now, the space is colorful, happy, and full of personality.
What are your tips and tricks for not only organizing a smaller space, but ensuring it maintains personality?
My trick is to find something they love that has nothing to do with design, and incorporate it into the home. If they’re passionate about it in their life, incorporating it into their personal space will ensure they’re happy at home too.
The open shelving in the kitchen is very now — what advice would you offer a homeowner leaning in this direction, but not totally sold on the idea?
Do it! Opening the upper cabinets like that makes the space feel much larger. It’s also a way less expensive way to create open shelving in your home, without having to rip the cabinets off. Just taking the doors off and putting wallpaper inside creates great design for a more affordable cost.
I love the relaxed, off-duty vibe of the outdoor space, do you have a favorite feature?
The hammock — there’s such a good behind the scenes story with this! In the middle of filming, the hammock collapsed with Thomas and I in it, crushing my mic pack and leaving me almost unable to walk for the rest of the day.
What was the biggest challenge faced with this particular project?
Making a small space function for two people.
Lastly, what can fans of Queer Eye expect to see next from you?
I have a new furniture line and new wallpaper prints coming out soon — there's lots more in the works!
For more design tips and tricks, follow the Queer Eye Fab-5 on Netflix.