Atlanta-based designer Dan Carithers came to the appreciation of form and color by way of Georgia's northeastern landscape where he was raised, and a view to nature continues to influence his approach to interiors. Nothing is forced; there is a sense of balance and a sense of time-a room and the furniture in it are expected to mellow with age; colors tend to be warm neutrals with the occasional bright accent.
Carithers' signature moves include using mirrors to expand space and light; designing idiosyncratic slipcovers that sometimes leave the bones of the chair exposed; and button-tufting for instant elegance. Then there's his love of textiles, which often results in unexpected choices: faux leopard prints combined with a documentary toile, for example, checkered seat covers for a formal dining room, or the odd bit of fringe where you least expect it.
Known for taking himself and his work lightly, he also has a penchant for throwing curves-an irreverent drawing, perhaps, or swivel chairs in a very proper living room. As he told Traditional Home: "If it's a really grand room, I like to bring it down. I always like to do something that introduces a humble quality." All of which adds up to the particular brand of southern comfort he's been delivering to his clients for more than 25 years. -Akiko Busch
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