Designer Crush Q&A: Tineke Triggs

Big thanks to Tineke for sharing her answers to our Designer Crush Q&A! 

1. Where do you currently live in CA and what's special about how you've designed your personal space?

I live in San Francisco. My personal space is like my personality - half Bohemian and half Ralph Lauren/Hermes. Growing up in Woodside, California, I'm a horse girl at heart but adore living in the city. In my own home I love pops of color and text with little elements of surprise and culture. My home has elements of my travels to Southeast Asia, and antiques from Europe and Africa too. 

2. What's your dream design project? Who would it be for (dead or alive)?  

I'm dying to do a modern beach house overlooking Malibu, Santa Barbara, Bali, Mexico, or the Hamptons. Something, clean, fresh, and bright, but contemporary. Of course a project in Paris or London would be amazing too. 

3. In real life, what's your favorite design project you've completed to date?

This is hard. I have two favorites right now. One modern, rustic home in Tahoe with reclaimed ceilings, metal, and stone. The other is a historic home in black-and-white with navy and orange accents, high ceilings, lots of light, and really cool intricate molding. The projects are very, very different from each other but extremely fun to work on with amazing clients. Both have elements of surprise that you wouldn't normally see in these types of homes - which is part of my signature look. 

4. You've been gifted a fabulously furnished dream home but can only bring one item from your current space. What would it be? 

That is easy! My 6x5 foot photo of the wild horses of sable by Roberto Duesto. 

5. What's your creative process when designing a space?

Every time I start a project I imagine living in the space myself, then I pretend I am my client. How do they live and who are they? I think of what I can offer them that they wouldn't think of themselves. I think that is why I design a lot of my own furniture; I'm always coming up with things I want that I can't I make it. 

6. Where do you score prized interior design items? Any shopping tips?

1stdibs is one of the best places to shop for unique one of a kind items. My best tip is to pay attention to scale and color. No matter how much you like a piece, make sure it can fit and look good in your space. I can't tell you how many times I have seen a client purchase something they love but doesn't work in a room. It's such a waste! And if you are buying online, make sure you know the quality of the company you are buying from and the return policies.  

7. Ever had an epic DIY disaster? What project would you never take on again yourself?

Of course- you can't be in the business this long and not have a couple great war stories. But I think my worst is when I first got started and I thought I could be a general contractor and hang crown molding myself. It looks so easy when you see them do it on TV!  It was a disaster. I have such respect for my contractors and craftsman - I will never do that again.  

8. What new design trend are you excited to integrate into your next project?

My new thing is custom hardware, including fun cabinet pulls I designed myself and some unique one-of-a-kind objects that I turned into pulls for furniture and cabinetry. It really makes furniture stand out!

9. Lightning round!

Beach or mountains?


Twitter or Facebook?


Architectural Digest or Wallpaper?


Should you spend money on a fabulous bathroom or kitchen?

Depends on if you love entertaining and cooking more then spas and tubs. I'm a spa girl and my husband is a book cook. He would say kitchen and I would say bath!

Would you rather shop new or vintage?


Great view or perfect pool?

Great view.

SF or LA?

San Francisco. Go Giants!!!

10. What's one tip you wish someone had told you when first starting out in the design world?

Understand budgeting and learn how to use a spreadsheet. Design and budgeting go hand in hand. They don't teach that in school and they really should!


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