Her style is colorful and bold, with more than a hint of whimsy. Meet Charlotte Lucas, the Charlotte, NC-based interior designer whose work has been in magazines such as Southern Living, Garden & Gun, and Elle Décor. Her mix of vintage with modern, one-of-a-kind with classics, and attention to detail has us wanting to know more. 

charlotte lucas

Mother of two, Charlotte Lucas is also a successful businesswoman, recently ranked number three in the UGA Alumni Association’s Bulldog 100, which recognizes businesses owned or operated by graduates. Image: treebirdphoto.com

What is your earliest design memory?

My first design memory is designing my childhood bedroom. I picked out colors, designed the bed my mother had made for me, and together, with my mother, we rag-rolled my walls. I am lucky that both my parents nourished my creativity.

How did you make the journey to being an interior designer?

My mother, an interior designer herself, set the stage for me at a young age, so becoming an interior designer was always my “dream job.” I studied interior design at The University of Georgia and soon started my own business.

What would you say is your design aesthetic, and how does it set you apart?

My design aesthetic is ever-changing, based on the project and client — from traditional to all-white modern. A house should speak to the character of the family it belongs to, not the designer. No matter the style of the project, I emphasize attention to the small details that otherwise may be forgotten in the end. I’m a firm believer that a design’s success comes from the compilation of details and layers.

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Who are your own design idols, and why?

I draw inspiration from the fearless female designers of the past — Sister Parish, Madeleine Castaing and Dorothy Draper. They were pioneers of their time, and I have so much respect for them and am thankful they paved the way for other women with dreams of being an interior designer. These women have lasting classic designs that are still relevant today.

living room design at Kiawah, by Charlotte Lucas

Grass-cloth walls from Phillip Jeffries envelop this sophisticated neutral living room in Kiawah. The light fixture by Vaughan adds another artistic touch. Image: Peter Frank Edwards

egg chair in living room

A vintage “Egg” chair is just one striking element in this library, covered in “Lichen” by Farrow & Ball. Image: Chris Edwards

paladian blue walls

Custom cabinets, painted “Paladian Blue” by Benjamin Moore, add just the right amount of softness to this gorgeous closet. Image: Chris Edwards

kitchen designed by Charlotte Lucas, with green barstools

Lively green stools by Bradley, and stylish pendants from Arteriors Home, distinguish this kitchen. Image: Chris Edwards

blue lacquered bar area

A lacquered version of “River Blue,” by Benjamin Moore, helps add the ‘wow’ factor to this swanky bar area. Image: Chris Edwards

retro-designed living room by Charlotte Lucas

Charlotte deftly combined vintage furnishings in this retro-looking living room, then added Boombox art from pop-culture artist Lyle Owerko. Image: Dustin Peck

What’s been your most challenging project?

My most challenging project was a beach house in Kiawah, SC. The homeowners’ main request was that the design scheme for every room be a neutral color palette. I majorly stepped out of my comfort zone but could not have been happier with the result.

Any tips on using color in foolproof ways, since you seem to be a fan? Any colors that you don’t like?

Use your favorite bright colors to exaggerate the simplicity of a room. Often times, you want a certain part of your house to speak loudly and illicit a reaction.

What are some of your go-to sources — both online and brick and mortar — for cool home furnishings?

1stDibs is a great online resource. The site represents fine antiques and newly manufactured furnishings from all over the world. It’s a fabulous site to purchase one-of-a-kind items or to window shop and be inspired! Chairish is also an unmatched resource for unique items to add a special identity to any room.

bold wallpaper in foyer

Bold wallpaper by Kelly Wearstler wraps this modern foyer. Image: Dustin Peck

historic wallpaper in bedroom

Wallpaper with a historic slant from Brunschwig & Fils plays a big role in this boy’s bedroom. Light fixtures and sconces are by Visual Comfort. Image: Chris Edwards

bright wallpaper charlotte lucas design

Charlotte’s skills mixing patterns and colors is at a high in this mudroom, with floral wallpaper by Miles Redd collection, next to cabinetry painted “Habanero Red” by Benjamin Moore.  Image: Dustin Peck

What’s your favorite room in the house to decorate, and why?

I love designing rooms that the homeowner has chosen to serve a particular purpose just for their whims — an adult lounge, a hunting room, a wet bar, their dressing room. My favorite spaces are those that are customized to their personality, taste and wild requests.

If you could be a designer for anyone alive now, who would that be and why?

Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel … I love them apart, I love them together, and I love their interest in interior design!

Thank you, Charlotte. See more of Charlotte’s work on her website, charlottelucasdesign.com.


Meet more of our favorite Southern interior designers in our archives. Click HERE!