Tools of the Designer’s Trade - 405 Magazine

Tools of the Designer’s Trade

Katelynn Calonkey of Mister Robert Fine Furniture shares a look at her design philosophy … and inside her purse at the gear she carries.


Interior designer Katelynn Calonkey spends her days tracking trends, so we catch up with her to discuss a few of her favorites and take a peek at the stylish essentials in her bag.


1. iPhone: Instagram is my biggest social media outlet, and I listen to TED Talks or NPR in the a.m.

2. Polaroid Camera: I love Polaroids. I use it for shots of jobs, and I use it at home too. When people come over, we take a Polaroid and they sign our guest book.

3. Tea: I love my tea. This is black tea so I get my caffeine in that way.

4. Tape Measure: Being an interior designer, it is crucial to have.

5. Lipstick: From the Emmys — a family friend went to the event. The name is “Blake’s Red,” and anytime you feel down, just put this on and you will feel better.

6. Fortune: I save my favorite fortunes. This one says something like “Your future is sparkly.”

7. Gourmet chocolate bar: From Compartés Chocolatier and designer Kelly Wearstler. I take after my mother for loving dark chocolate.

Katelynn Calonkey officially started with Norman’s Mister Robert Fine Furniture and Design in 2011, but she’s actually been a part of the business her entire life. As a third-generation member of the family, understanding traditions and tracking trends is in her blood.

Calonkey brings design knowledge while helping her clients maintain their style. “Your home,” she says, “should look like who you are.”

When it comes to her personal style, Calonkey uses a juxtaposition of traditional and modern, such as her home’s crystal globe chandelier and leather dining chairs accented with nail heads. The living room sports a velvet camelback sofa, zebra floor mirror and traditional rug. Cherished pieces include oil paintings by each grandmother.

“It is very special to have something so personal,” shares Calonkey. “Both were very good artists.”

“Anything goes these days,” she says.  “You’ll see mixing of a lot of different elements.”