From the comfort of a charcoal linen, tufted modern bench with silver nail-head trim in her contemporary office – complete with two Louis XVI ghost chairs, an Arco floor lamp and a linear electric fireplace – Sara Turner-Luigs can dream up designs to her imagination’s content. LN recently spoke with the owner and design director of CURE DESIGN GROUP about the style footprint she is making on St. Louis.
What led you to the design field?
Honestly, I feel that design chose me ... I have always been enthralled with the style industry, and coming from fashion and being drawn into interiors was a natural transition. Everyone should live a stylish life, from what they wear every day to how they live in their home. I love being a part of that expression of their lifestyle re-imagined.
How competitive is today’s design field?
The design field is more challenging now than ever. The industry is saturated at the moment, and unique products are harder to find. Not to say that local designers are competing with each other, but rather competing with the growing online market of low-quality and mass-produced furniture. Anyone can buy a piece of furniture; however, only a designer adds the collected layer, perfectly pairing selected pieces to style a space to make the client feel he or she wouldn't want live anywhere else.
Tell us about some of your recent projects.
When approached by Hollywood Casino St. Louis with the challenge of transforming an old restaurant space, we instantly had a vision: tuxedo meets barn. CURE associate designer Melanie Christoff and I wanted a combination of a sleek and swanky vibe for a beer house. We added a game area with chalkboard walls, a stone surround to the existing brick columns and continued a gorgeous coffer ceiling down the opposite column wall. The kicker was to open up the front of the space with two oversized black garage doors.
For another project – a contemporary home nestled back in St. Louis County – we created an open mega-kitchen with great natural light, double-islands, seating areas and a bar that opens to the great room. Cure senior designer Cori Dyer used custom-made furniture and cabinets, and a double-island featuring two surfaces: a butcher block and unforgettable marble. Creating an uber-chic space doesn’t happen on its own – it takes intricate design, research and planning.
What challenges do designers face today?
The need and desire to grow, change and be inspired. We need to be challenged just as any other professional. We try not to succumb to trends that our clients will tire of quickly; but, rather, design with evolved concepts and express the lifestyle of our clients. We design not only for ourselves, but collaborate with clients to create a unique and stylish environment.
What is your dream design project?
I would love for our team to design a resort or hotel! I would like to take a raw concept for a lifestyle resort somewhere exotic, and create it from concept to completion. How amazing would it be to vacation at a resort that you designed and styled?