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Design, Designers

Meet Cali Designer Chris Barrett & Her First Area Rug Collection with Mansour Modern

California interior designer Chris Barrett will participate in a special Design West panel discussion at Las Vegas Market. She also gives RugNews.com a preview of her inaugural area rug collection, currently in development with Mansour Modern.

Lisa Vincenti
designer Chris Barrett and an living room she designed with monsieur modern rug
A long-time client of Mansour Modern, designer Chris Barrett is working with the luxe rug showroom to develop
her first line of rugs. Portrait photo credit: Karyn R. Millet

LAS VEGAS -- California-based designer Chris Barrett, who joins a special Design West design discussion at Las Vegas Market on Sunday, at 1 p.m., shares some top design trends she expects will shape her work in 2022 -- she also offers RugNews.com a sneak peek of her first area rug collaboration with LA's Mansour Modern, currently in development.

The Southern California interior designer, who used to helm the interior design group at award-wining Los Angeles-based design and architecture firm KAA Design Group, struck out on her own again in 2007 to found her eponymous design studio. Barrett, who recently relocated to Palm Desert, is sought out for her chic simplicity and airy designs -- and her ability to effortlessly weave together contemporary elements with antique and vintage pieces. "I don't do heavy," she said.

A plush Moroccan area rug by Mansour Modern sets the stage for this Mulholland Drive living room created by
designer Chris Barrett.

"The interior architecture is important to me, and I need to do everything I can make sure that it is the best it can be -- that is first and foremost. Secondly, I always start with a rug in every room. The starting point of all decoration is always the rug. If you don't start from there you have force your rug to fit all your fabrics and upholstery," the designer said.

"Today, I almost always use modern area rugs -- I love clean patterns, And, I also use a lot of natural rugs, like wool and jute." Barrett says she prefers to work with the same vendors, including Mansour Modern and Mehraban, another Los Angeles rug purveyor, because she knows she can count on their quality. In addition, while Barrett will create custom rugs for projects, she says it is often easier for her clients to work with an existing design, so that they can see and feel the piece."

A plush, blue palette Moroccan style area rug lays the ground work in the family room by interior designer Chris
Barrett. Photo credit: Karyn R. Millet


A rendering of the first area rug design from the Chris Barrett program with Mansour Modern features a rich
green that Barrett expects to be big in 2022.

Barrett has had a long-running relationship with Mansour and approached the company about collaborating on a rug collection. "Our first rug just arrived, and we have several other designs in the works. I had a textile line that I sold two years ago [to Theo Decor] and I loved designing them. I had some rug designs I had already worked out and some I was thinking about it, so I talked to Benjamin Soleimani [Mansour owner], and we started the journey."

Of her area rug designs she notes, "They are all very transitional: you can use them in any decor and the colors are very complementary to current trends." She said that the debut program will include indoor and indoor-outdoor rugs, and they could also be custom colored.

There are different types of rugs: an indoor collection, which includes six to eight hand-knotted wool rugs made in India, and in/out designs that feature yarns that mimic wool. "They will be fantastic." Color palettes include trending neutrals and green -- a color Barrett adores and expects to be "a big color this year. “It's a very rich green, like a ficus leaf.

"Within my work green is a big trend, people are going back to more textures and monochromatic looks and textures," she added. She notes that in 2022 she expects clients to continue to request not only home offices but also spaces where children can do their homework.

"Design is very personal and tactile and you need to get to know people. So, we have had to work around the coronavirus, There is so much more that you can do virtually these days, but I miss those one-on-one client interactions.

On Sunday, Jan. 23, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m., Barrett joins Angelo Surmelis, Breegan Jane, Brian Paquette and Lori Dennis, for a Design West panel discussion, hosted at Las Vegas Market, Building B, B-16. To learn more or to register, click here.

Chris Barrett's textiles designs served as the springboard for her inaugural rug collection with Mansour Modern,
which will include transitional designs for the indoors and out.

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