Top Designers * Keith Baltimore
Port Washington, New York based Keith Baltimore is one of our favorite top designers. Creating high end residential projects and incredible details in every single one of his design decor, Keith Baltimore has a unique sense of style and taste. Love Happens talked with Keith, also owner of Baltimore Design Center, in order to know more about his work, inspirations and dreams inside of his 25 years of work as an interior designer.
Love Happens: Before we start talking about the Interior Design industry, let’s talk a little bit about how it all began: passion. As we already know, you are a passionate about the luxury furniture’s world. But we don’t know how it all began. So how and why did you get into the luxury furniture’s market?
Keith Baltimore – In my opinion, luxury furniture is incomparable when it comes to the quality of the materials and workmanship, attention to details, and the refinement of the designs. My clients expect the best.
Love Happens: To be in love with our work is always the key to achieve better results. Are you in love with your job? What do you love most about it?
Keith Baltimore – First of all, what I do is never a job, it is my own personal manifestation of beauty in the world. And I am most certainly a perfectionist, always striving for the best results. I have an instantaneous ability to FEEL how I want the project to look; I love the freedom to bring the design that I visualize to life.
Love Happens: How important is a perfect chemistry between you and your clients to achieve the best results?
Keith Baltimore – Chemistry in human relationships is critical; but professionally not every client is going to be your best friend. I am lucky that only occasionally do I have to dance around a negative vibe in my pursuit of delivering what the client has come to me for.
Love Happens: What do you think is the most unique thing in your store high now? What about in your own home? Is there any piece (or special brand) in your store and home that deserves your full attention? Why?
Keith Baltimore – Unique items: In our store we have a pair of zinc dormers from an old building in Belgium. At home I have a fabulous black bubbles and gold chandelier hanging over my kitchen island. You will be pleased to know that it is the Atomic Suspension Light in the DelightFULL Unique Lamps collection.
Items that grab attention: In the store, we have optic glass vases and bowls you just have to look at. At home, I have chunky crystal sconces over my bed that infuse my bedroom with an aura of energy. In my hallway, I have the gold Brubeck Wall Light also from the DelightFULL Unique Lamps collection.
Love Happens: Keep up to date on all the trends is essential for anyone who wants to conquer this market – there is no time for mistakes. In what ways do you keep current with new trends?
Keith Baltimore – I attend leading trade shows and furniture markets throughout the US, and read all the prestigious design and architecture magazines. There is also much to learn from our vendors’ sales representatives, many of whom visit me in my showroom.
Love Happens: When you think about Interior Design, what or who really inspires you? Why?
Keith Baltimore – Without a doubt, my client is my inspiration. As a professional interior designer, my first responsibility is to understand my client, making me an anthropologist of sorts. Then I am inspired by their needs, lifestyle, expectations, and translate that insight into a space they will love to live in. This also means that my designs are always as different as my individual clients are different. There is no cookie-cutter Keith Baltimore look.
Love Happens: Choose the best pieces to compose a project can be the secret to getting the best overall result. Although it seems easy, this is a delicate task and needs full attention on time to execute it. How do you select which pieces and brands will be part of the catalog of your store?
Keith Baltimore – I instinctively anticipate budding trends before they become main stream. My buying approach for the store is to select furniture from many parts of the world for an interesting mix of materials, colors, and periods.
Love Happens: Most of your customers are probably Interior Designers, and for professionals it is always easier to choose which pieces will be included in a project. However, when the issue is all about decoration, many who comes to your store are amateurs who are also passionate about decoration. And sometimes these clients need some wise advices. Do you have some tips for those who don’t know well how to start a challenge like this?
Keith Baltimore – Actually, most of our clients and customers are not in the field. My advice obviously is to hire an interior design professional to make it happen painlessly; that is what we are here for. For those who only want small changes or who have budget constraints, I recommend a new color paint or one of the special finishes; get different throw pillows; rearrange the furniture; add potted plants for a warm, lived-in look.
Love Happens: What do you love most about have a store like yours and to be surrounded for timeless pieces like some that are available on your store?
Keith Baltimore – Shopping for things I love is plain fun, and of course picturing how they will look in my store helps me to make my selections from so many really fine vendors. Then the way I display everything helps my clients to pick and choose for their own homes. And of course, I buy items for specific clients.
Love Happens: At last but not least, in your opinion, which brands cannot be forgotten in a decorating project for this project to be a remarkable one?
Keith Baltimore – To me, crystal lighting fixtures are the height of glamorous luxury. In this category, we all know the brands that have the history in this category. I also look for pieces that are representative of something, iconic in their own right.