26 Sep A Toast to Innovative Design: An Interview with Jamie Beckwith on her Wine Cellar Project
For our September/October issue of Life-Styled we are focusing in on Design Renegades; people who have really pushed the limit with their creativity and performance within the design community. Designer, Jamie Beckwith, really set the bar a few years back with her acrylic wine cellar project in Tennessee. With the hopes of more edgy projects like this emerging in the future, we decided to speak with Jamie on her inspiration and process going into her project.
Designer/Firm: Jamie Beckwith/ Beckwith Interiors
Name/Type of Property: Nashville Residence / Pool House
Location: Franklin Tennessee
Photos By: Kim Sargent
What was your inspiration behind your wine cellar project?
The inspiration was to marry gothic architectural elements that were already running through the entire house with a modern interpretation.
What materials did you use for this project? How did you choose them?
I wanted the materials to be unique and clean but also warm and organic. I used end grain blocks, from my JBC collection for the flooring. The wine racks were acrylic. The perimeter wine storage is custom walnut millwork. The ceiling was engineered glass. I choose these materials for their ability to change with different conditions. For example, the acrylic had a different look when the LED lights are changed. The glass ceiling had to function from both levels, below and above. The materials were chosen to create a bit of tension, by using modern acrylic and mixing with warm organic woods.
What was your process for the wine cellar project?
I designed the cellar on paper first by sketching and deciding on layout. The wine collection was extensive and had to house 1000’s of bottles of wine in multiple bottle formats. Once the design floor plan was decided on. We then began to draw elevations. The finishes were one of the first concepts. Usually finishes come after the floor plan, but this design was based off of the acrylic material first.
How long did it take for you to complete this project?
This project took over a year to complete.
What was your first thought once you were finished with this project?
I thought the design was strong, graphic and most importantly it functioned beautifully.
What’s your proudest design moment?
My proudest design moment, has been building a brand for Jamie Beckwith Collection and having other companies express interest in collaborating with me. It gives me the opportunity to explore other product categories while expressing my designs and brand story.
How does your interior design background impact the products you design?
I believe having a background in Interior Design is incredibly important. It allows me to see thru the eyes of the designer. So I feel like I design for my peers… trying to create something that doesn’t exist in the marketplace. Something that is not only beautiful but fills a void that may be missing. I listen to other designers, what they want, what is trending and that helps me when creating new products. It’s also important that I would want to use my products within my own clients projects.
Do you prefer designing residential or commercial spaces? Why?
The majority of my interior design work is high end residential. I am lucky that I get to design for residential projects but my JBC collection is primarily used in commercial spaces. So I get to explore both in a different capacity.
What would be your dream space to design?
My current design dream project, would be to create a modern Southern California beach house overlooking the Pacific while hanging perilously from a cliff.
Give us a few adjectives to associate with your design aesthetic.
Innovative, bold, organic
If you weren’t a designer what would you be?
I used to sing and dance professionally, so I guess I could pick that up again.
What is your most memorable career moment thus far?
Getting prepared for the launch of a lighting collaboration with Curry and Co. lighting.
What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
Coffee and then coffee and more coffee
What is one thing you always need to have in your fridge?
Almond milk and chilled champagne never hurts
Do you have any hidden talents?
What is one habit you wish you could break?
Letting go of control and impatience.
What makes you laugh?
If you could spend 3 months anywhere, where would it be?
I especially enjoy Italy and love Capri. I could stay in Capri for 3 months swimming ,eating and reading.
What is the soundtrack to your life?
Don’t know the sound track but I’m listening to a lot of Kygo music lately.
What is something you cannot live without?
I can not live without my family, especially my three children. They are my absolute joy and they are the reason for everything I do.
Instagram or Twitter? Why?
Instagram for sure. I am addicted. Its all about the image.
Jamie Beckwith, the founder of Beckwith Interiors draws inspiration from exotic travels, photography, fashion, luxurious textiles, and life experience to bring a unique approach to design. “I am thrilled to be able to express myself through so many facets of design,” she says. “It is equally fulfilling to create a beautiful environment for a client as it is to create a new unique product.”
Photography by: Kim Sargent