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The Wall Street Journal recently asked some luminaries to weigh in on their ideas of perfection. I found some of their thoughts fascinating and it got me thinking about perfection in design (what I am always striving for).

First I’d like to share what some celebrities said about perfection in the the WSJ piece.
“Our imperfections make us who we are.” Cindy Crawford commented about her beauty mark which her sisters called ugly. “In my case, being memorable was more important than being perfect.”

John Pawson, minimalist architect and designer, says, “I love perfect things. It seems everything Mies van der Rohe was perfect. Recognizing that quality is an emotional thing.”

Lee Daniels, who produced and directed “The Butler” comments, “Perfectionists don’t consider themselves perfectionists. We just strive to make things better – and they can always be better.”

Mary Helen Bowers, ballerina, comments, “Too much perfection can be boring – it doesn’t feel as soulful or passionate. I was taught it was better to really try hard, even if you might fall. It’s exciting for the audience when you are giving it everything.”


  • Interestingly, I agree with all of them! I do strive to create the perfect interior design for my clients’ homes. However, what perfection means for one client can be very different from what it means to another.
  • To me, perfection is never about one thing, it is the cumulative effect of how everything comes together to evoke an emotion when entering the space. If my client loves the ambiance of the space, loves being in the space, feels the space totally belongs to them – then it is a perfect design!

Here are some of my favorite designers and my picks of some of the “perfect” designs they have created.

Falling Water designed by Frank Lloyd Wright for the Kaufman family

Wright surprised everyone by locating the building over the falls instead of looking at the falls.

Locating the home over the falls, Wright, once America’s most famous architect, perfectly merged the setting of the home with the environment.

  • I love creating landscape designs and using water features that reflect my client’s taste and draw guests in. Sometimes creating a surprise is the perfect solution.

Hudson River Design created by Louis Comfort Tiffany
for the reception room at the home of Melchior S. Beltzhover in New York