This month we’ve got our spotlight on Buck Wimberly, designer and CO-owner of ULAH. You may recognize the store from everyone’s favorite show, Queer Eye.
How did you get started in design?
I guess I’ve always been interested in design. But it wasn’t until I started thinking about college and a career that I really connected the dots and realized that all the things I was interested in were tied to composition and design. At least since I was 7 or 8, I’ve been exploring different forms of design — fashion, interiors, graphic design, etc. I couldn’t really decide what to pick. I eventually got my Master of Fine Arts in Design Management, and have created a role for myself where I can do them all.
What’s your favorite room to design?
I can really get passionate about any space I’m designing. But lately, I’ve been enjoying kitchen designs as they’ve become the central hub of the home with the growing popularity of open concepts. I think of the home as a body made of interdependent parts —— with the kitchen as the heart of it.
Do you like to re-model or do you prefer a new build?
I like to have a balance of both in our portfolio. I love the challenge and transformation that comes with remodeling, while I enjoy the blank slate / blue sky thinking process that you can get with a new build.
What are your favorite things to shop for the home?
I love to shop for living room seating. It sets the tone for how the space will be used, and helps drive the rest of my design for that room.
Where do you look for home inspirations? (Design magazines, blogs, Pinterest)
Of course, I have the usual channels: Instagram, a variety of magazines, blogs, Pinterest, and Houzz). But my favorite design inspirations have come from unexpected places as I go through my daily life — especially when I’m out and about or traveling. Sometimes I’ll get inspired by architecture, the colors of a landscape, or something I see in fashion and will apply that to one of my interior or custom design projects.
Are there architectural styles that influence your work?
Sure. I can appreciate most styles of architecture, but I’m really drawn to the International style and Mission architecture.
What are your project must-haves?
Communication and trust are the foundation of a successful project. That goes for the relationships with my clients, contractors, fabricators, and vendors. From a design perspective, balance is one of my top priorities and keeps the pieces and spaces I design from being too one dimensional.
What is your ideal client?
My ideal clients understand the value of what an interior design firm brings to the table. They’re willing to trust our design process and are open and communicative, knowing that we’re here to help them solve problems and help make their home something they’re proud to have their favorite people in.
What is your favorite thing about your home?
To be honest, we’ve been putting all of our time and money into our new business and our own home has been on the back burner. I’m looking forward to completely transforming our home in the next couple of years using the resources and relationships I’ve been building through my client projects. So I guess my favorite thing would be its potential.
What’s your favorite stone?
This changes often. I’ve been using Calacatta Halo in one of my own furniture collections, in my store, and in kitchen designs. But lately, I’ve been waiting for the opportunity to use Cambria Rose Bay Quartz. I plan to integrate it into my next furniture collection because of its modern pop vibe and the gradient/ombre effect it has.
Favorite local artist?
One of my favorite local artists is Dean Kube. I know him from my days working at Hallmark. There’s just something about the way he interprets the human figure that is intriguing to me. Though not local, I’m also fascinated with Butch Anthony — a rising folk artist from Alabama — whose art hangs throughout our store.
Interior Designer crush?
Ryan Korban. I like his fresh approach to traditional spaces, and his use of juxtaposition with materials. He’s also an interior designer who designs custom pieces for clients, so his success inspires me to keep doing what I’m doing.
What’s your favorite thing about Rocktops?
The quality of work, their craftsmanship on cabinetry, and their willingness to make sure projects are finished the way you intended them to be. They’ve also been really open to facing the challenges that come with some of my custom designs.
Looking for the rockin’ coffee table featured on Queer Eye? Be sure to check out the Elliot Collection.