A guest post from Mississippi-born designer and artist Christian Lee.
I have been working as an interior designer for the last 13 years and, in 2008, designed my first textile line. In 2013, I started repurposing vintage finds. Born and bred in Mississippi, I grew up knowing that the arts held my calling. Creating and designing is what I have to do. It’s the air I need to breathe.
I’m passionate about my home and design. How can I make the fabric work? How can I make it reflect my Southern roots? I dream about homes, decorating, color, fabrics. Design is never far from my thoughts. I’m always looking, searching and wondering what I can do with a piece of fabric, furniture or a house.
My inspiration for textiles began in my living room. Looking at my foyer with my bench and my Mississippi pillow on it, I realized I could create something that had meaning. Anyone who has known me for all of half of second understands what Mississippi means to me: it’s love. This is something I wanted to create and design. This is something I wanted to pass down to my children.
Thus began Christian Lee Designs, Clothing for the home. Our mission is to design and create for every home a work of art that is within your means. May our textiles clothe your home with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. May each handmade piece provide you an abundance of simple pleasure. Along with my textile line has evolved a repurposed furniture line. The repurposed furniture has become my other baby. I love dumpster diving and searching for the gem someone else has discarded.
The things that are beaten up or tattered usually speak to me the most. I relate to those pieces that have had a hard road, and I see hope of what they could become. I look for beauty in everything. Raised in the South, I bring a different perspective on home design. My Southern culture is part of my love of vintage. As a Mississippian, we hold onto tradition and our past. Family pieces are handed down from one generation to the next.
Southerners are passionate people, and I pour that passion into my work, because it’s worth it. Whether it’s a shower curtain, headboard, tablecloth, coffee table or chairs from a garage sale, there is an abundance of soul and heart that radiates from each of my pieces. Most of us want to live in a home that is an extension of who we are.
Home should reflect your story. Mine is Mississippi, my boys, my travels, my memories, my taste and my life. Whether you connect to one of my headboards, a pillow, shower curtain, tablecloth or throw, I wish the same for you. True design comes when you break the rules and breathe.
Photos courtesy of Tina Sargeant Photography.