I have been a creative all my life and have had careers where my talent has been front and center. One of my favorite jobs was as a visual display manager for Nordstrom’s, because I always had to think outside the box to create a story in the "black box," which were the store windows. Now, as Creative Director of KEHOE DESIGNS, a full-service event design and décor firm, my role is to tap into emerging trends and translate them for the event industry.
Coming up in 2019, the Pantone color of the year is "Living Coral," so in event spaces we'll be seeing a move away from Millennial Pink and toward warm, cozy hues like terra-cotta, blush pinks, and earth tones in warm browns and russet reds. There is a sense of softness, comfort, and nostalgia, but set in a modern context—technology is not absent, but hidden away. Another trend we're showing is a combination of natural and artificial elements, where materials are modified almost like you are looking through rose-colored glasses. Think watery pastels like lavenders and soft blues and pinks.
Being a creative that forecasts and anticipates the future can be kind of lonely, because you must sit with so much insight, information, and concepts that are not available to team members or the public yet. However, I have a large tribe of futurist and creatives that do the same thing, so I am never alone! I can’t remember who said this, but I find it so relevant to my role: I, along with an elite team, lay the track that the KEHOE DESIGNS superhighway designs on.
I favor an “effortlessly modern” look, with a passion for heritage brands. Maria Pinto is of course one of my style icons, along with Nina Garcia, Johanna Ortiz, and Carolina Herrera. I have so many artists and creative icons—each in different disciplines.
I could be in so many different environments on any given day and what I wear has to withhold my lifestyle. I think our philosophy at Kehoe Designs is the same as most workspaces, in that we all have our unique style and wear it proudly (but when we are on site as a team for events, we are in black and khaki, our brand colors). My work style and casual style are similar—I might layer on accessories, swap in some heels or boots, and add a great lipstick. And like that, I’m out the door! My outfit has to take me from day to night with a quick switch of shoes and accessories. I don’t have the time or energy to be fussing or fixing. For me, it is about feeling confident and stylish at the same time in any environment.
The yearly collections at M2057 offer timeless pieces, and the fabric is everything! The material is so versatile and resilient. Right now, my favorite pieces are the Juvelyn long leather vest/dress and the Christabel moto jacket. Both are so adaptable and have amazing styling power. Each piece can be casual or dressed up with an added leather belt or chunky necklace.
For going out, I do like something simply sexy with a long line, so I love my M2057 Tabitha leather dress or Stella dress alongside my Wool Caress. And for travel I always bring separates like the Jacquelyn pencil skirt and Paley top or the Benatar leather minidress. I am always guaranteed to look and feel fabulous.
At this point in my life, time gives me the most joy. Time to love, explore, and challenge myself to do things I have never done—putting me outside my comfort zone. I love that I am an intuitive and a warrior with a softer side. I am a thyroid cancer survivor—seven years and counting!
Establishing a work-life balance has been a challenge for a long time, but I am finally there. It’s not easy, but I’ve started saying "NO" to the things that do not work for me anymore and "YES" to things that make me nervous—in a good way!
Bridget's favorite piece right now is the versatile Juvelyn leather vest, which can also be zipped up and worn as a dress. Here she adds edge to an all-black ensemble with the Gee top, New York pencil skirt, and Taurus X horn necklace.
To get in touch with Bridget about this piece or her work at Kehoe, email her at email@example.com or contact Kim Bakota Lamb at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photos taken at THE GERAGHTY and KEHOE DESIGNS in Chicago, IL.
This interview has been edited and condensed.
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