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atlanta designer crush: bobby mcalpine

June 10, 2015

Bobby McAlpine

Atlanta architect and designer Bobby McAlpine is nationally known for his inspired and inviting spaces, which easily mix elegance and comfort, classics with modern. Also an author and entrepreneur, McAlpine recently launched a handcrafted furniture collection, McAlpine Home.

Background: Grew up in mill towns of Alabama and Louisiana. He holds dual degrees in architecture and interior design from Auburn University.

His firms: McAlpine Tankersley Architecture (1983) in Montgomery, Ala., and McAlpine Booth & Ferrier Interiors (1997) in Atlanta, New York and Nashville. These two firms, listed on Architectural Digest’s AD100 and Elle Decor’s A-List, work independently and in collaboration.

First design job: In the seventh grade, I was asked to design a ranch house for a neighbor and the richest women in town (Aliceville, Ala.). She was also the cheapest woman in town, (she hired a 7th grader!).

As seen in: Architectural Digest, Veranda, Elle Decor, Traditional Home and House Beautiful. McAlpine also has two books: “The Home Within Us” (2010) and and “Art of the House” (2014) with Atlanta interior design partner Susan Ferrier.

Favorite home accessories: Quirky treasures found on my travels, including usual garden sculptures that I love to drag indoors, various beautiful pieces of handmade luggage and scales.

Favorite & cheap decor trick(s): Huge stacks of firewood.

Best way to quickly transform a room: Pick everything up, take it outside and bring it back in.

Design pet peeves: Jarring and spotty use of color.

Where should people splurge: I subscribe to buying an extraordinary thing … riding the coattails of it until it is time to do the next good thing.

Current design obsession: Contrasting textures.

Most important element in a room: A welcoming vignette, a cozy corner with all the props you need to sustain an afternoon by yourself, with a friend or your dog.Bobby room

New or re-emerging design looks I like: Anything paired with something that re-carbonates it and give it new life. Modernity with antiquity.

Most unusual design requests I’ve received: A cat room. A Barbie closet. A levitation chamber. A 1,000 square-foot-room architecturally unencumbered for the free range movement of a robot. The best request: A house of individual rooms connected to one another by screen porches.

Best design advice I ever got: Do what you know – and I know this.

Biggest design mistake I’ve made: An all-white interior. It was short-lived. But wait and watch me do it again.

Biggest design mistake homeowner’s make: Not buying or building what is true about they lives.

Favorite rooms to design: Gathering rooms, big lavish salons and tiny dens.

Hardest spaces to design: Closets, grill area and anything involving the ever-evolving television.

Some favorite Atlanta home/design stores: Bungalow Classic; Robuck; and Holland & Company.

Places near Atlanta for great and unexpected finds: Revival in Chattanooga, Tenn. The owners have impeccable taste. Every time I visit, I walk out with something.

What I would like to design: A beautiful hotel. I’ve lived so much of my life in them that I welcome the opportunity to make real all the notions I have in my head, built from all the observances I have made over the years.

Favorite household object(s) or possessions in your house: An antique box containing letters, and my little dog, Boyfriend.

Latest project: Working with a client to renovate and reinvent the small town of Wilson, Ark.

Up next: My own new house in Ansley Park.

Find Bobby at:
http://www.mcalpinetankersley.com
http://www.mcalpinetankersleyblog.com
https://instagram.com/mcalpinetankersley/
https://www.facebook.com/mcalpinetankersley

http://www.mcalpineboothferrier.com
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