Friday, August 21, 2009


Photo Courtesy of Alexa Hampton
Alexa Hampton runs Mark Hampton LLC, the legendary interior design firm founded by her father. Mr. Hampton served as a design mentor and inspiration for his daughter, and Alexa found her design calling at a young age. At 16, she was touring Versailles and classic English gardens en famille, helping to form her aesthetic. Travels to Europe gave her the art history and historical background. Both Alexa and her father were talented painters from a young age, and they could express themselves artistically. Alexa picked up his elements of style through osmosis, and British architectural elements, Roman antiquities and soft colors are hallmarks of her rooms. She took up the reigns, taking over the firm in 1998, and kept existing clients while gaining new ones, proving she could run the show. I went to visit her in her office this spring. The place is buzzing, and she works on so many different things at once it is most impressive. She is taking the product world by storm, and has designed a furniture, fabric, lighting and rug collection. Could a book be far behind? I think not. Her wit, vim, vigor and great eye make her a force. As a mother of three young children, she is a hard act to follow. She is one savvy business woman and terrific fun.

Photos Courtesy of AH

The entrance area

Archways lead to Alexa's office

Her library is spread out around the walls of her office, and bookshelf space is not wasted on nick nacks. Her library is full of old greats and is well used. Treasured historical references and newer tomes fill every last nook. Alexa's collection spans the ages and she uses every last book as a resource

Her view, perched high above Central Park, is inspiring and light filled

A great chair covered in her fabric

Two desks are better than one. A round work table is where the creative stuff, fabric scheming and sketching is done. Reading, computer work and stacks live on her real desk. Client meetings usually occur at the work table, since she can show past projects and spread out portfolios

The New York apartment building she grew up in, as documented in her youth

An early painting by Alexa, done when she was 20

A watercolor by her late father. He painted this in his teens

Endless inspiration points exist in her office. Antique furniture and accessories inspire her own designs. A wonderful swag table holds a dilapidated model of an English country pile and treasured family photos

Their very organized fabric library


Alexa Hampton for Hickory Chair could have been simply inherited by Alexa from her father, since he had an existing collection there. But no. Alexa, ever the innovator, wanted to have a her own line, reflecting her design aesthetic and how people live today, and she worked hard to get it. Less formal room layouts and casual entertaining means furniture serves different needs now. Having a little fun, Alexa named her pieces after friends. Impeccable room vignettes with Alexa's collection are shown below. This is how buyers, decorators and stores see Hickory's newest collections when making their biannual pilgrimages to Furniture Market.

The fun part is, designers that do a collection get scheme everything. By selecting fabrics, finishes and layout, they know what will be most alluring to the buyers that come through

Styling a room with finishing touches, signature accessories and personal elements brings Alexa's design philosophy to life

The Hubert Side Chair

The back has great details

The Blix Side Chair

The Regan Chair

The Roberts Sofa

The Christiensen Dining and Drop Leaf Table

The Pavlos Bookcase

The Olson

The Mark Desk

The Simon Bench

The Hoffman Side Table

The Andrew Side Table

Photos Courtesy of Hickory Chair
The Susanna Side Table


When you can't find what you need, you get it made. Or, you find gaps in the market and create product to fill that need. Alexa brought her numerous ideas to lighting manufacturer Visual Comfort and made them fly. Her incorporation of classical design motifs with lattice, Greek key and urn elements are fresh and easy to work into a room. The finish options can make a piece appear contemporary or traditional. Visual Comfort makes lighting of superior quality, design and proportion, so this collection is a natural fit.

The Kate Table Lamp in polished nickel finish

The Lauren Table lamp in faux bamboo porcelain

The Vivien Table lamp in natural brass

The Burt Table Lamp in alabaster

The Burt in black marble

The Estelle Display Lamp in polished nickel is great for a vintage book or small framed piece of art

The Charles Alabaster Pendant

The Gene Swing Arm Sconce

The Dean Single Arm Sconce

The Bob Table Lamp in wrapped leather

The Frank Flush pendant in natural brass

The Sophia in polished nickel

Photos Courtesy of Visual Comfort
The Basil in natural brass


Dumbwit Tellher ♥ said...

Great information into the life on Ms.Hampton. To have such a talented father as a mentor but be determined to forge her own way representing her own design style. Kuddo's to her.
Oh, & so many lighting choices..heaven!

Happy weekend ~

Jill said...

The Regan Chair is calling my name!

maison21 said...

love the lighting line- esp that easel lamp.

The Peak of Chic said...

I am a HUGE Alexa Hampton fan. Her work is not just striking but intelligent too. Her apt. that was featured in HB or H&G about 5 or so years ago was one of my favorites!

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I love it! Very creative!That's actually really cool.