Featured Designer /

Billy Beson

Looking for a taste of the glamorous life?

Vintage glam. Modern glam. Contemporary glam. Glamour can be found most anywhere, but you need to know what to look for. For instance, common elements, such as crystal, stainless steel, and dramatic lighting, can take different shapes. And that’s just a start. So what to look for and where to look? Just follow me.

First, don’t let glamour fool you. Though the look is luxe, it needn’t mean expensive.

The glamorous look and this lifestyle are available in nearly every price point, including your next trip to Target. Their sexy lighting and accessory lines shout out glitz and glam. Cozy up to luxurious towels, leopard rugs, and high-gloss finishes. On the high-end route, I search for glam in vintage furnishings from the 1930s and 1940s that reflect luxury and passion, such as modern glassblown lamps from Italy, as well as plush fabrics, luxurious wall coverings, and faux fur. (I’m totally anti-fur, but I’ve found that a fake can often give the same luscious effect.)

For colors, I love blacks, whites, and grays. When doing white I often use ultra suede because it’s tough as nails and easy to clean. Real suede, on the other hand, is about as impractical as you can get. Most people can’t tell the difference—and it still gets you the “wow” factor. Toss in a faux mink throw and you’ve got glam. Combine the sleek and glam with soft and luxurious and it evokes something soothing and exciting at the same time.


“If you want to introduce some Glamour into your home, focus on small spaces that can pack a lot of punch, such as powder rooms and entertaining spaces like your dining room, in-home bar, or game room.”


When it comes to materials that channel glamour, think polished nickel, mirrors, and quartz.

Also consider fake snake, ostrich, and alligator—which are all now fabricated out of vinyl. They’re extremely durable and work for everything from bar stools (at minimum) to entire powder room walls for those wanting maximum impact. Start with your foundations and then layer accessories: a fake fur pillow, glass spheres, or a beautiful, contemporary Lucite table, lamp, or pendant. Lucite is back, big time. It gives the same sparkle of crystal at a fraction of the price. (You know you’re a seasoned designer when you see the trend come back again!)



So, can you pull off some weekend projects that will look glamorous?

If you find an old chair at an estate sale, glam it up with some gold or silver leaf. Same goes for frames and mirrors. Or spray paint an old brass chandelier in white lacquer. The whole room will take on a new, exciting look. And remember, every generation of design has had its take on glamour—so, yes, you can put 1920s glamour in your 2010 house and vice versa. Just don’t overwork a trend. Interpret it in your own style to avoid putting an expiration date on your interior.



Billy Beson, CEO of the award-winning Billy Beson Company, is based in Minneapolis

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