Which Came First: The Dog or the Design?

I was visiting with one of my clients yesterday and was struck by how beautiful their dog, a sweet rescue named Max, looked in their living room.  The color of his coat was perfect with the leather club chairs and he looked gorgeous lying on the graphic grey and white rug. It was almost as if I had designed the room around him!  I had met Max once or twice but it was awhile ago and I certainly wasn't thinking about his coloring when I designed the interior of their second home in South Carolina.  At least, I don't think I was.  But it got me thinking.  My dog looks good in my house, too.  Here is my dog, Ryelee, in our family room. See what I mean?


I thought it was a happy coincidence. Was I designing spaces around dogs? Were dogs my design muses?  Is this a normal thing?  Does this happen to other people?  I know dogs and their owners are supposed to start looking alike, but dogs and their homes' carpets?  Or rugs?  Or chairs?  Hhhhmmmm. What if subconsciously, the dogs were calling the shots in the way their homes are designed and we don't even know it?


So I decided to do a little investigating to see if "it was just me" or if there were others out there experiencing the same doggy design phenomenon.  It turns out that I am not alone!  In fact, this is a fairly common occurrence in the design world.  We designers are kind of like sponges, subconsciously soaking in everything in view.  You never know what is going to pop out in the design.  I can't help but think that the dogs know what is going on and are very pleased to have the rooms designed to make them look good.

Katie Ridder Interiors

That Inspirational Girl

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