A Moment with Suzanne Kasler
By K.K. Snyder
Inspired by architecture, art, fashion and travel, Suzanne Kasler designs spaces and products that are luminous, distinctive and timeless. Her designs always reference the past but move towards the future with an edited and discerning eye on the present. Mixing the high and the low, traditional and contemporary, the new and the old, she creates signature interiors and products that convey a sophisticated simplicity. Her designs inspire everyone to live a more beautiful, stylish and authentic life.
With work published in major design magazines, including Architectural Digest, Elle Décor, House Beautiful, Traditional Home and Veranda, Kasler has been named to Architectural Digest’s AD100 and Elle Décor’s A-List, among other accolades. Also, her award-winning interiors have been captured in three books with Rizzoli, Inspired Interiors, Timeless Style, and her most recent title, Sophisticated Simplicity.
She challenged herself by making this book more personal, sharing stories about her upbringing in a military family and dedicating the book to her parents. Her father was a fighter pilot in the Air Force, an Ace during the Korean War and a prisoner of war in Vietnam for seven years with John McCain.
“So I had a little different upbringing. We moved every two years of my life. You know, with some designers, they grew up designing when they were six, and that was not me, so I have a different approach,” she laughs. The new book discusses design in sections based on location of the projects – town, country and shore.
“I think the big thing with the new book and how things have evolved is that the clients we work with today have a lot more sophistication and knowledge and interest in design,” she says. “At the same time, a lot of clients want a more edited way of living, not overdone and over decorated, which I’ve kind of always kind of had as my concept. I called it Sophisticated Simplicity because people are wanting simplicity but still very sophisticated, and that’s what I’ve been able to bring to my clients.”
Known for rooms with a foundation in tradition, pretty palettes and timeless sophistication, Kasler mixes American and European eclectic furnishings to create comfortable living spaces. Her latest book highlights a collection of recent unseen residences in town and country and at the shore, accompanied by the designer’s reflections on the catalysts for her inventiveness.
Along with richly photographed profiles of inviting and modern family homes and oceanfront estates, Kasler’s book illustrates her methods for incorporating fresh ways to organize a guest area, create outdoor spaces for luxuriating and entertaining, and assemble captivating vignettes. The result is a wealth of original ideas for design professionals and anyone with a passion for interior design—an essential addition to every design library.
In addition to designing timeless interiors for her clients, Suzanne has produced signature lines for partners including Ballard Designs, La Cornue, Lee Jofa, Visual Comfort and Hickory Chair. For over 20 years, Kasler has created warm, inviting environments that strike a balance between elegant, traditional design and practical comfort. Her collaboration with Hickory Chair brought that same spirit to her extensive line of furniture.
“I truly love product design, and by working with the different partners I’ve been able to translate what designers are looking for in products. One thing that’s very special about working with all these partners is the process – working with the factory workers and working with the artisans that really make sure they put things together. I think that dimension is a positive in my design work, and I think my being a designer first and foremost, and the passion I have for designing homes, is an asset to all my partners.”
Known for her love of all things French, Kasler brings a fresh mix of Continental flavor and classic style to her interiors. By mixing both antiques and modern pieces, she creates environments that are timeless, sophisticated, and, most importantly, livable. Kasler’s passion for perfection and detail is consistent with Hickory Chair’s tradition of personalized home furnishings. The collection features couture details, such as grosgrain ribbon trim, slipcovers with graceful ties, and custom-made hardware for a perfect finishing touch.
Last spring, Kasler introduced the Paris Collection inspired by pieces that she has collected over the years. The new collection is a sophisticated blend of intricately detailed, hand-crafted wood products, as well as tailored upholstered pieces. Throughout the elegant offerings, architectural elements are highlighted with modern details and clean lines for a timeless look. Her debut line of lighting and accessories for Hickory Chair features boxes, trays, sculptures and lamps to perfectly complement her new and existing furniture collection.