Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have your home designed by a professional? The majority of Home & Design readers are either looking for or contemplating hiring a talented interior design group. To share what that experience would be like, we are taking a behind-the-scenes look at a design firm that has been based in Southwest Florida for over 25 years.
Collins & DuPont Design Group was founded by Kim Collins and Sherri DuPont in 1987. They came together with a shared philosophy of how to best serve their clients through the highest standards of personal service and a commitment to exquisite interior design choices that genuinely reflect each individual they work for. For more than two decades, their leadership and vision has turned Collins & DuPont into a successful full-service business; engaging a staff of over 40 highly skilled designers and support professionals. With clients throughout Florida, the United States and overseas, these two extraordinary women have grown one of the largest interior design firms in Southwest Florida.
This organic contemporary kitchen features a clean-lined design with slab doors, glass, metal, a stone mosaic backsplash, and rectilinear stained beam celling detail. The focal point of the space is a dramatic framed pass-through with overlapping branch design that helped inspire the custom metal work of the stair railing.
Your experience at Collins & DuPont begins by walking into a 17,000 square foot design center where a reception area and beautifully appointed showroom create a welcoming atmosphere. Moving through the space past executive and administrative offices, conference rooms and designer work areas surround an extensive resource library brimming with inspirational textile and material samples from over 4,000 vendors worldwide. The design center also features an in-house CAD department and 2,841 square foot warehouse that holds an eclectic selection of high-end furnishings and accessories with multiple rooms dedicated solely to pillows, lamps, mirrors, and artwork.
An ode to coastal comfort, this space features layered dropped slab ceilings and understated simplistic furnishings, creating a relaxed, contemporary environment. Pops of kiwi, tangerine, aqua, and crisp whites bring the room to life while framed crustaceans add a whimsical flair.
Alina Olinger, Allied ASID
With all the best resources on hand, it’s no wonder you will find the design teams so inspired. “I am passionate about what I do and the people I design for,” states interior designer, Alina Olinger, Allied ASID. Olinger, a graduate of Florida State University, holds a degree in Interior Design and has been with the firm for 9 years. She is a leader of one of the 4 interior design teams.
This transitional master bath features a floating tub in front of bay windows, accented by a crystal and champagne silver chandelier. The blue-grey color palate and simple lines of the cherry cabinetry create a serene and calming atmosphere.
The synergy between the design teams is apparent as you move through the building and can hear the buzz of colleagues sharing ideas and sitting side-by-side to review project color boards. “I love the process of taking a raw undeveloped environment and transforming it into a beautiful and functional space,” explains Jody Keene, ASID. Keene, a graduate of North Dakota State University, holds a Bachelor of Arts in Interior Design and has been with the firm for over 7 years.
As Keene leads her design team in a collaborative work area toward the back of the facility, you can see the consideration Collins & DuPont gave to details when carefully placing their main presentation room in a wing of the building that receives ample northern light. Because of this exposure, viewing selections in this space really gives a true sense of color and texture to design teams and their clients.
This study features a free-standing desk and glass door bookshelves that create an airy and light work environment. The soft blue walls and driftwood cases add to the relaxed and laid-back feel of this space.
In the CAD department, ideas are brought to life with digital renderings. “We have learned how to pick the designers’ brains in order to create a visual that will help their clients imagine what could be their new space,” describes John Biggs, Director of Design Production, in the firm’s drafting department. By having an in-house CAD department, the designers have the ability and ease of working closely with professional draftsmen every step of the way instead of outsourcing and sending their plans to a subcontractor.
This contemporary den features a two-toned desk wall unit made of a rift-cut oak in a whitewashed charcoal finish. Its geometric design allows for ample hidden storage while maintaining an artful appeal. The furnishings are tailored in styling and are comfortable for reading and visiting with friends and family.
“I strive to create a truly exceptional space that reflects livability and the interests of my client,” says senior designer, Lana Knapp, ASID. An in-house CAD department truly aids in helping clients conceptualize in 3D how their space will come to life as the final design selections are put into place. Knapp, a graduate of Florida State University, has been with Collins & DuPont for 24 years.
Lana Knapp, ASID
Throughout the showroom, images of projects by these top designers are displayed to show the range of styles and level of detail that Collins & DuPont is known for achieving. Collectively, Knapp, Olinger, and Keene hold Aurora and Sand Dollar Awards for Best Interior Detailing $2,000,000 million to $3,000,000 million, Best Detached Family Home Over $3 million, and Best Interior Design of Single Family Home $1.5 million to $1.749 million. Additionally, Knapp was the Interior Designer for the 2013 Grand Aurora, Best of State and Best of Show that was awarded to BCBE Construction.
As a part of its 2014 company initiative, Collins & DuPont is evolving its brand with a new company name and revitalized logo. “Collins & DuPont Design Group is still very much the same award-winning, full-service team of experts that our clients have come to know and rely on for so many years,” says Collins. “It was time for us to demonstrate our growth, strength, and team effort with a re-branding initiative,” adds DuPont. Celebrating 27 years in business, Collins & DuPont Design Group is evolving with the times and will continue to deliver high quality design services worldwide.
Photography by Lori Hamilton
8911 Brighton Lane
Bonita Springs, FL 34135