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Susanna Salk

Small Things Matter

by Joseph Montebello

As a writer, stylist, and stager Susanna Salk is always thinking about design. In her latest book It’s the Little Things: Creating Big Moments in Your Home Through the Stylish Small Stuff she puts forth her philosophy about making your already great rooms even more special.

“A successful room needs to speak to you as well as about you,” explained Salk. “It’s fine to have a collection but it must be composed of things that are special to the owner. I go into houses where things need to be edited and reorganized. What you put in needs to be good and have meaning behind it.”

This is Salk’s eighth book and was inspired by her previous one entitled Decorate Fearlessly! Using Whimsy, Confidence and a Dash of Surprise to Create Personal Spaces.

“My last book included a chapter called “Accessories,” said Salk. “Details are what give a room that extra soul and specialness – the little things in a room that make it feel big. “

Detail is important to Salk, but it needs to be relevant to the overall design. Not fussy detail and certainly not an overabundance of things. It can be as simple as an object on a bedside table or wonderful trim or embroidery. It catches the viewer’s eye and elevates the overall presentation of a room.

On April 23rd in celebration of It’s the Little Things, Salk is creating a series of design vignettes in several New Preston shops including Dawn Hill Antiques, Pergola, New Preston Kitchen Goods, Privet House, DK Schulman, Plain Goods, and J Seitz, where she will be doing a book signing from 3:00 to 5:00 PM.

“In essence I will have gone to each store in the village, picked out some of my favorite little things that inspire me or that I feel are wonderfully necessary and create an environment with them,” Salk explained.

Salk has been interested in design all her life. As a child she would cut the glossy ads out of magazines and wanted to be the person who created those glamorous ad campaigns in Vogue. Her first job was at Conde Nast International where she worked in a satellite for all the shelter magazines and coordinated necessary contacts for whatever was needed. She went on to Elle Décor and then to House and Garden as special projects editor. She creates design segments for the The Today Show and is a contributing editor for Recently she has teamed up with Stacey Holston Bewkes, founder of the design blog Quintessence, and created the video series “At Home with” that features profiles of prominent designers.

Since she is exposed to the latest developments and products in the interior design world, does Salk feel the need to change the décor of her own house frequently?

“I don’t believe that a room should stay the same for more than five years. By that, I don’t mean that you have to do the whole room over. Move things around, buy new pillows, a wonderful lamp, a new rug. You’d be surprised what a difference the simplest change can make. And edit, edit, edit. I hold on to only those things I really use and love. If you put something away you will probably never look at it again, so why save it?

Makes perfect sense, but then everything Salk says makes perfect sense, which is why her books are so successful and inspiring.

Visit her in New Preston on April 23rd or online, linked below.