It’s all warmly familiar: The black-and-white palette, eclectic arrangements, fine art at every turn. But this isn’t the Ansley Park residence that, for 30 years, Mimi Williams called home. This Buckhead townhouse is not only larger than the designer’s former abode, but also a tad less traditional, too.
Still, her trademark style is by no means lost in translation. “Everything translated so differently, yet so elegantly,” Williams says. “It just fell into place. This is much larger than my former home, so it was a real surprise how intimate it feels, considering I have far more square footage.”
That’s not to say there aren’t a few new pieces thrown into the mix. In the living room, for instance, quietly neutral furnishings give way to an impressive assemblage of art. But the pièce de résistance is a 1960s desk made for none other than F. W. Woolworth. Made of Fiddleback Pacific Maple, its shiny French-lacquered surface is set on a Lucite base that creates a floating effect. “This whole room is all about that desk; it’s a piece of sculpture,” says the designer. “And it has my favorite sculptural objects on it—the bookends, the sphere, the Rosa Serra sculpture.”
Teaming the Modernist piece with an American Gothic chair, Williams secures her standing as a master of the mix. “The mix comes effortlessly,” she explains. “I’ve traveled extensively and been fortunate to buy some wonderful and unusual things. It is my hope that my home reflects the travelogue that it is.”
Likewise, the master bedroom is an example of inspired juxtaposition. Taking center stage here is a 19th-century French bed wrapped in white leather, balanced by a black 1970s Japanese screen at one end of the room and Craig Schumaker artwork (a clue to Williams’ “love affair with circles”) atop a Swedish drop-leaf table at the other. Rounding out the room are objets d’art both high-end and low-, but—given their common denominator colors—a vintage Serge Roche lamp is right at home next to a pair of Pier 1 pillows, Chinese tribal necklaces co-exist beautifully with a $10 bicycle found at a flea market.
In fact, the entire house is a treat for the eyes, not to mention a lesson in creativity. If a change of address results in this much inspiration, one can only hope Mimi Williams is on the move again soon.
Designer Mimi Williams’ Favorite things
Fabric of the Moment: Silk mohair
Paint Color She’s Dying to Use in a Project: Benjamin Moore’s “Iron Mountain”
Sheets and Linens: Antique French linens
China: Villeroy & Boch’s “New Wave”
Car: My Audi TT, white—of course—with a black top
Accessory: An abstract sculpture my son made in the third grade
Stationery: Rice paper from Asian grocery stores on Buford Highway
Wallpaper: Osborne & Little “Walk in the Park”
Flower: White tulips
Artist: Kimo Minton
Rug or carpet: Antique Oushaks
Vacation spot: To be determined; I need more vacations!
My dream house is… anything with an oceanfront view
INTERIOR DESIGN Mimi Williams, Mimi Williams Interiors, (404) 580-9800; mimiwilliamsinteriors.com