By Charlyne Varkonyi Schaub
When Frances Herrera was a teenager, she dreamed of traveling to Milan and Paris as a buyer for Barney’s and Neiman Marcus. She studied fashion buying and merchandising at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York and worked for Phillips-Van Heusen. But something was missing,
“I felt my passions were not connected,” she says. “I took a break and went to Europe for the summer and it clicked – my love of architecture, fabric and art. I realized I could marry all my passions and loves into creating beautiful spaces. When I came back from Europe I gave it a try.”
She started a design business in New York in 2002 and she moved to Fort Lauderdale in September 2012 to expand her services to our tri-county area.
Why did you move to South Florida?
The move was a natural extension for us. We feel our aesthetic flows really well into coastal living. Being a New Yorker, I felt our sensibility, level of sophistication and color palette made sense here.
How do you describe your decorating style?
My philosophy is “Livable Luxury.” Furniture can be enjoyed with kids, cats and dogs. Spaces are relaxed and comfortable, yet they feel luxurious. They are timeless.
What is your Dayzine service?
Dayzine, a one-day makeover, stemmed from the economy. I found clients weren’t committed to redoing an entire room. They wanted a refreshed look. I would switch out some new pillows, reupholster a bench and change accessories. It gained a lot of popularity and as a result Open House on NBC gave me a segment at the end to showcase one-day makeovers.
Who are your design idols?
I take a lot of my inspiration from color, texture and fashion. Because my first career was in fashion, I love Oscar de la Renta, Tory Burch and Trina Turk. My favorite interior designers are Barbara Barry and Vicente Wolf.
Frances Herrera Interior Design, 350 SE Second St., Suite 680, Fort Lauderdale, 866-605-8111, francesherrera.com.