While selecting paint colors and sit testing sofas are certainly important steps, there is so much more that goes into a designer’s process than one might expect. It starts well before the first piece of furniture is placed. Dwayne Bergmann begins by assessing the scope of the project against a strict set of criteria, ensuring it meets the firm’s standard of quality. Then comes his in-depth questionnaire which reveals lifestyle needs, emotional reactions and aesthetic preferences. Dwayne scours the globe for the pieces that make his clients home unique, and custom creates cabinets and furniture to make it truly bespoke. Over months and sometimes years of tasks, decisions, and benchmarks, the completed project feels like an effortless extension of the inhabitants.

The courting process for Dwayne and prospective clients goes both ways. They might have been referred from a friend or heard about his talents in the local design magazines, but this is the opportunity for them to interview him and vice versa. The relationship between a designer and their clients is very intimate and transparent so there has to be synergy, understanding, and trust. To build that foundation, no pun intended, Dwayne dives deep into the lives and personalities of each member of the household to determine their wants and needs. What we like and are visually attracted to isn’t always the best indicator of what we actually need. Using his years of experience in corporate Human Resources, Dwayne is particularly skilled at reading between the lines to understand what is at the root of their preferences, the common threads, the hard no’s, and the opportunities to really wow.

The product selection process is the most fun, yet most complex aspect of any design project. With so many incredible brands and makers out there, it’s an almost impossible task to narrow down on your own. Dwayne is extremely decisive and unwilling to compromise when it comes to making his vision a reality. If it doesn’t exist, he will custom create it. He and the DBI design team tap their trade exclusive resources for the best luxury products on the market and curate them to create a look that is reflective of Dwayne’s signature aesthetic and the homeowner’s personal style. The discovery process usually starts online, complimented by visits to trade showrooms and design shops. Narrowing down the options that will eventually be presented to his clients takes a lot of factors into consideration, including lead time, budget, and quality in addition to appearance. With so many moving parts to juggle, Dwayne is the true north of any design project, keeping the focus narrow while dreaming big.

There is no greater satisfaction for a designer than when his clients cross the threshold of their new home for the first time. That big reveal moment is the result of countless hours, days, weeks, and months of prep, process, installation, and final touches. As precise as he is, there is always room for error when it comes to interior design. Ever the experienced expert, Dwayne has navigated his projects through every tough situation, to his client’s great appreciation. Before the big reveal comes the delivery, installation, and placement of each element from the floors to the light fixtures and everything in between. Any last minute swaps or adjustments that need to be made happen at this point. Finally, Dwayne will arrange the home as if out of a magazine with fresh flowers throughout to create a homey feel. The DBI team make a collective bittersweet sign of relief when the client loves their new home, but the project they loved working on has come to an end.

While mustards and saffron spice hues have been popular in the past several years, we noticed an emerging trend more towards deeper rust colors. As is often the nature of trends, they deepen and enrich as they continue to infuse into our interiors.


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