Raised by a French Moroccan mother and Yankee father, it comes as no surprise that Philip Gorrivan’s designs are defined by a sense of gutsiness. The Manhattan-based decorator is confident mixing saturated colors and exotic patterns with stately New England antiques and heirlooms, striking a masterful balance between whimsical and refined.
What inspired this career path for you?
I’ve always been drawn to interiors; even as a child I would spent hours reading the latest issue of AD, or looking through design books. Also my love of art history, decorative arts and textiles led me to interior design, although I took a career detour in the business world for several years first.
What is your go-to source for inspiration?
I believe inspiration is everywhere one looks, whether it’s a store window or details on the façade of a building while walking to work, or the more obvious, such as reading an out-of-print design book or traveling the globe. Lately, I’ve found much inspiration from England’s great houses and London’s many wonderful museums, architecture, gardens, and charming streets.
Tell us about your creative process.
Obviously, each project and client is unique, and usually the creative part is specific to each project. However, I’d say there’s a general process my team and I follow. The first and biggest part of the creative process is what we call the concept development phase, which can take an hour or days or weeks to achieve. Usually, it’s a combination of interviews with my clients, along with lots of brainstorming, depending on how much we can take away, and sometimes that creative light bulb just goes right on!
Describe your style in 6 words or less.
Interiors designed with authenticity and narrative.
What’s a staple in your tool kit?
Who do you look up to in the design world?
The late David Hicks and Billy Baldwin, along with Frances Elkins and Jean Michel Frank.
If you could design a space for anyone, what kind of space and for whom would it be?
That’s an easy one: for myself. I’d take Philip Johnson’s house in New Canaan, CT or design a French art deco style house with a huge octagonal entryway somewhere in the Litchfield County Hills.
Tell us your favorite design-related word, phrase, or quote.
An interior with narrative, telling a story of the homeowner and the room itself.
Which design blog, website, TV show, or magazine would you be lost without?
INSTAGRAM. ELLE DÉCOR. THE CROWN.
If you are consigning: Share a little bit about the pieces you’re consigning on Viyet, e.g., do any have unique back stories, in what kind of space do you hope they end up, etc.?
I’m excited to share pieces that I’ve custom designed, along with objects I’ve collected in my travels.
What do you love about Viyet?
It’s a fresh new resource for designers, easy to use and navigate, and full of inspiration!
new york, ny