Leslie Banker: Interior Designer

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Bio:

Leslie Banker is an NYC based interior designer that has left her mark on most of the cities elite residential buildings. Leslie is now leading the firm started by her late mother, celebrated designer Pamela Banker (they worked together for many years). http://www.pamelabanker.com/about/  Leslie also co-authored two decorating primers - The Pocket Decorator and The Pocket Renovator. Past projects include the interior design/decor of a beachfront home that was designed by famed architects Gwathmy Siegel. She collaborated with Rick Ruben http://harrisrubin.com to custom design two significant pieces for a client’s home and is reviving her textile business.

What do you do best?

Interior design.

What makes you the best?

I listen well when clients tell me what they want. I can tap into the look that people want for their space and translate their ideas into a comfortable, stylish reality.

Biggest success?

Having clients who keep coming back to us over the years.

What are your aspirations?

Personal: I’d like to read more books, throw more dinner parties, and spend more time skiing each year.

Business: I am in the business of helping people to be happy in their home. I love this work and want to continue learning, discovering and growing as a designer. I am launching a furniture line later this year and I want that to continue to develop.

Most challenging moment?

I started working with my mother at our interior design firm in 1999 and in 2013 she died after a short illness. In the span of a few months I had to manage her sickness and death while taking over her responsibilities and role in the business during what happened to be a particularly busy time.

I learned then how essential it is to have good friends in life and strong relationships in business. The importance of building and nurturing a dynamic team became clear to me as well as the need to stay focused on priorities.

Favorite Motto?

Keep it simple and comfortable. I believe good design at home helps people to lead richer lives.

Favorite People?

For me now, the most inspirational interior designers are Jacque Grange, Albert Hadley, Madeleine

Castaing, and Billy Baldwin.

Favorite Places?

I have many favorite places. As a born and raised New Yorker, I continue to find so much inspiration all over the city. I love places with beautiful colors, some of those are the beach at dusk in Southampton; being on a sailboat in Narragansett Bay; the Haghia Sophia in Istanbul; and Grand Central Terminal in NYC. Most of all, I love being at home.

Favorite Products?

My favorite products for interior design are cork floors, plaster and paper light fixtures, cement tiles, grasscloth for walls, and hand printed wallpapers and fabrics. Generally, I love things that are natural, handmade, and have a texture. Outside of interior design products, I love mechanical pencils, my iPad, and my Smythson Soho Diary.

Current Passions?

My family, my friends, and inspiring designs are always my top three passions.