Her Favorite Room

Blue and white Portuguese tile set the stage for Julie Herd's design choices.

It didn’t take long for designer Julie Herd to find inspiration when she was tasked with furnishing and decorating the main living area at 2319 Colonial Parkway. Blue hand-painted Portuguese tile lines halfway up the wall in the Mediterranean-meets-contemporary house, built by Period Homes in 2010.

“The great thing about this tile is you can sort of go either way with it – Old World or contemporary,” says Herd. She used the palette to direct her decisions, landing on furniture and décor in various shades of blue. Navy velvet slipper chairs face off against Ming chairs with a walnut frame, perfectly balancing warms and cools. A midcentury vintage coffee table from Paris sits in the middle of the room. Herd found much of the furniture for the room from Park + Eighth, a vintage home décor and furniture shop on Park Place Avenue, owned by fellow Fort Worth interior decorator Christina Phillips.

Currently, it's her favorite room she has decorated, and her absolute favorite piece flanks the wall at the back, creating a nook in the corner. It’s the Marilyn Sofa from the Jan Showers collection, with a French polish and linen fabric. She loves the function the sofa brings in its spot as well. “The most fun thing about this room is that it’s big enough to accommodate a lot of seating areas. You can create different conversation nooks. Plus, it’s great for entertaining because it’s so large,” Herd said.

Windows from a connected sunroom allow natural light to flow in, while twin table lamps surround a couch, further defining the open space. It’s a reflection of where Herd places value in design. “Lighting is the most important part of any room,” she says. “I can have a bad meal with good lighting, and I’m happier than a good meal with bad lighting,” she says.

“I like a combination of good overhead lighting and fixtures. I love lamps. I’m always amazed when I go to dim the lights at a house and I can’t find dimmers – even in multimillion dollar homes. I don’t do any houses where I don’t put dimmers on every switch.”

Herd has been designing in Fort Worth for 17 years. She and her business partner, Kim Boyd, own JSH Designs, where they work with homeowners and builders. “We like to mix styles, from the ‘30s and ‘40s, up to current day,” says Herd. “Our goal with all of our clients is to create chic, stylish spaces that are both timeless and comfortable at the same time. We use a mix of antiques, new, vintage and contemporary pieces with a dash of the unexpected in every room. There is nothing more boring in design to me than to walk into a room that is one dimensional.”

Herd also has an LLC with owner of Hull Historical, Brent Hull. The duo recently renovated and sold two major renos on Fort Worth’s Westside, including a home that sold for more than $2 million on Thomas Place.
As for the 6,300-square-foot Colonial Parkway house, Herd staged it for the owner to sell. The home is listed with Pam Ball with Williams Trew.