In-Depth with Sarah Beth Shamblin, Design Associate for Duet Design Group

Sarah Beth Portrait_Duet Design Group_Sarah Beth Shamblin Designer Profile

Tell us a little about your background and why you decided to become an interior designer.

During my childhood, I was immersed in creative hobbies such as painting, sewing, and scrapbooking. In high school, I was most involved in my Art, Computer, and Yearbook classes. As an undeclared Freshman in college, I had interest in pursuing a Liberal Arts Degree, but my advisor guided me to register for an Introduction to Interior Design course, as well. In my second semester, I enrolled in a Visual Communications Drawing course which focused on hand draft to communicate interior architecture concepts, and it was at this point that I realized my passions for creativity and problem solving could be combined into a single profession – Interior Design.


What are some of your key design philosophies?

Two design philosophy quotes that I try to live and work by are the following:
“To create something exceptional, your mindset must be relentlessly focused on the smallest detail.” – Giorgio Armani
“Form follows function – that has been misunderstood. Form and function should be one, joined in a spiritual union.” – Frank Lloyd Wright


What would you say are some of your strengths as a designer?

My strengths are computer program efficiency, problem solving, and artistic aesthetic.


What are your personal favorite design styles? (i.e. how do you/would you design your own space?)

I would say my style is ultimately eclectic. I love blending contrasting furniture styles with a mix of different textures and patterns. I appreciate when a room/home is not a single design style, but instead many styles that work together harmoniously. 

Eclectic Style_Duet Design Group_Sarah Beth Shamblin Designer Profile
An example of the eclectic style Sarah Beth personally enjoys. Credit: Nicolas Tosi, Elle Décoration

What are some of your pet peeves as a designer?

Carpeted bathrooms, popcorn ceilings, water beds, “ceiling titties”…

Design Pet Peeves_Duet Design Group_Sarah Beth Shamblin Designer Profile

A “ceiling titty” with popcorn ceiling, two of Sarah Beth’s pet peeves


Where do you look for design inspiration? Are there any recent examples of things that have inspired your work?

I try to browse magazines the night before/morning of the start of a new design project and tear out pages with cool concepts for built-ins, furniture layouts, and pattern play. However, most of my design inspiration I find browsing through Instagram. Here are some images I’ve recently saved for ongoing inspiration:

Jean Stoffer Inspirations_Duet Design Group_Sarah Beth Shamblin Designer Profile
Recent inspirations for Sarah Beth from Jean Stoffer Design


Kelly Wearstler Inspirations_Duet Design Group_Sarah Beth Shamblin Designer Profile
Recent inspirations for Sarah Beth from Kelly Wearstler


What’s your favorite Duet Design Group project you’ve worked on and why?

UPCOMING ASPEN PROJECT, 2019, Aspen, Colorado
This residence is a custom home in Aspen, CO. A mountain side literally had to be excavated for its foundation to sit, so the location is unreal – it is located at the base of Aspen Mountain. I think this is one of my favorite projects because it was my first project, and I had the opportunity to use a combination of renderings with REVIT and drawings with AutoCAD. I also appreciate that we (the designers) were brought in from the start of the design process and worked closely with the architect and builders. 


You work really closely with Devon and Miranda on all Duet Design Group Projects. What key lessons have you learned from them during your time at Duet?

Duet Design Group was my first Interior Design position out of college, so the better question is what lessons Devon and Miranda haven’t taught me! Ha!


What is your favorite part about being a designer with Duet Design Group?

I love that I am a part of every phase of the design process. It is so satisfying as a designer to see projects from start – programming with clients – to finish – installing the design into their home.

We design collaboratively as a team and each designer’s input is valued.

Our workspace is to die for – I love our large work tables surrounded by a library of samples and fabrics, our personal desk systems, our back patio with lounge and dining seating, and, of course, the Nespresso.


What do you enjoy doing when you’re not designing?

On weekends between November and March, I’m probably in Winter Park on the ski slopes, and on the weekends between April and October, I’m most likely in a on a patio practicing my leisure sports ?
Sarah Beth Skiing_Duet Design Group_Sarah Beth Shamblin Designer Profile