Design Experts
Nov 29, 2011

20 questions with Jillian Harris

By: Natalie Bahadur

20 questions with Jillian Harris Author: Style At Home

Design Experts
Nov 29, 2011

20 questions with Jillian Harris

By: Natalie Bahadur

You probably remember Jillian Harris as the star of ABC's The Bachelorette, but did you know that she is first and foremost a talented designer? We get to know the Canadian designer a little better as we ask her about her favourite stores, restaurants, movies as well her design aesthetic.

1 If you could shadow any designer for a day, who would it be?
Jillian Harris: Kelly Wearstler without a doubt!
 
2 Where do you look for an obscure source of inspiration?
 
JH: On the road. I always pull over to strange antique shops and trading posts.  
   
3 Favourite restaurant?  
JH: Of all time? Oh my gosh. I would say Mount Burgess Dining Room at the Emerald Lake Lodge in British Columbia.
 
4 What’s your favourite room to decorate?

JH: Patios! You can have so much fun with the outdoors.
 
5 What’s your current paint colour obsession?  

JH: I have to admit cool blues, crisp greys and that smoky teal.
   
6 If one song could be the soundtrack to your life, what would it be? 
JH:
Ummm … Holding Out for Hero by Bonnie Tyler? Haha!
   
7 What’s the one store you could spend hours browsing?
JH:
The Cross Décor in Vancouver. And I Do.
 
8 London, Paris or New York?  
JH:
Paris. I haven't been to London … yet! I love New York but it reminds me of work, and my time in Paris was cut short but I would love to go back, buy a little condo and just chill for a summer.  Last time I was there on a layover, the fresh air smelled like fresh honey.
 
9 If money were no object, what one thing would you buy?  
JH:
A big cabin on a lake in the middle of nowhere (I will buy it one day!)  I’d have goats, chickens and dogs.  Boats, four-wheelers and lots of guest cabins for friends. Oh heck, a float plane too so I could pick everyone up on Friday!
   
10 What do you consider to be the most iconic design piece of the past century?  
JH: I want to say the Louis chair since I use it in every design but I think that was designed in the 1800s. So, my next favorite is the Shell Fiberglass chair. If not, the toaster!

 

11 Favourite movie? 
Jillian Harris: The Holiday and Dirty Dancing.
 
12 What’s your favourite movie interior?
JH:
The little millhouse in The Holiday. Love that bathroom with the stone walls.
 
13 What do you think is the easiest way to update a room? 
JH:
Clean it. Most times we just need to purge and change things around. And guess what? It’s free! Another great idea is a new light fixture and new light bulbs. The right bulb can make a world of a difference.  New knobs on ‘older’ furniture and a fresh coat of paint.
  
14 Best coffee table book? 
JH:
Kelly Wearslter’s Domicilium Decoratus  - I don’t know what’s more beautiful … the interiors or her dresses. 
 
15 What’s your fave way to spend a lazy Sunday? 
JH:
Sleeping in, gardening and having everyone over for dinner on the patio.  If I’m in Kelowna, packing everyone up and going for a dip in the lake.
  
16 Do you like to be the entertainer or be entertained?
JH:
Entertainer for sure! I LOVE cooking.
  
17 What do you think is the best renovation you can do to your home?
JH:
The kitchen. An old shabby kitchen will bring down the home.
  
18 What is your fave space that you’ve designed?
JH:
Pinky’s Steakhouse Yaletown in Vancouver. It’s not open any longer but it truly was a beautiful space and to this day is my favourite. Droopy pink chandeliers with Mooi shades, rich green velvet booths. Black Louis chairs and a very modern and glamorous patio complete with carrerra, shell chairs and black and white bold stripe exterior drapes.
  
19 What’s the biggest design faux pas? 
JH:
Buying a complete furniture set and not bringing your personality into a space.
 
20 Marilyn, Audrey or Jackie? 
JH:
Oooh ... Audrey! Marilyn’s a little too sassy, Jackie a little too by-the-book. Audrey’s a good mix between good girl and bad girl!

To take a peek at some of the rooms Jillian has designed, read about Jillian Harris' design inspiration.

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Design Experts

20 questions with Jillian Harris