Tastemaker: Reagan Hayes Reinterprets the Classics

It can at times seem like a few young designers are so aim with awaiting that they neglect to check out the past. But for Reagan Hayes, the past is your best source of inspiration. An interior designer switched product designer, Hayes creates products that aren’t about trends — they are about upgrading layouts that have proven the test of time. Keep reading to learn more about this stylish designer’s inspirations and favorite products and her take on the present design climate.


Morgan Lounge

This sleek sofa seat was designed to make a stunning announcement. Hayes drew from her design history and combined strong lines and sharp corners with soft upholstery and a curved back for an incredibly comfortable piece.

Q: How can you begin in product design? What is it all about furniture that inspires you?

A: I was operating in interior design for many years and had designed some custom bits for various clients. Shortly after the arrival of my first son, Henry, I wished to find a way to remain involved with the design sector whilst still spending a significant time for a mom — and that’s when I actually dove into designing couches, sofa chairs, dining chairs and other bits.

I will stay an interior designer first and foremost, however, I really enjoy the reach I have gained designing goods. There is only so many hours in the day so many design projects I can take on at any particular time, but my products can be part of dozens of additional designer’s projects at once!


Marion Daybed

The Marion peek-through chaise almost brings to mind a thinner and more modern version of a Victorian fainting couch. Each end of the chaise is framed in wood and accented with nail heads to get an extra bit of elegance. Place this piece beside a window for a perfect reading nook.

Q: What sort of changes do you see occurring in design now?

A: I think a great deal of designers are moving away from trendy and gimmicky designs to a more classic aesthetic. I also think everyone is trying to do more with less — most of our clients have felt some effect of the tough economy, and that put pressure on designers to get creative with supplying a wide variety of options for clients.


Zelia Chair

A slightly updated take on the classic Klismos chair, Hayes’ Zelia Dining Chair has the exact same comfortable silhouette because its inspiration. The upholstered seat is anchored by one row of nail heads, while the chair’s rear has a Greek key detail that may be done in gold or silver leafing.

Q: What are you trying to say with your bits? How can you describe your style?

A: I like to describe my style as”youthful elegance.” Our bits are based on classic forms that I have updated with sharp details and clean lines to give them a really balanced aesthetic. It’s important to me that each of my pieces can stand by itself and actually make a space special — so every one of them stick out in their own way.


Stanley Lounge Chair

Plush upholstery, a high back, and a deep seat make the Stanley Lounge Chair the perfect piece to sink into after a long day. Hayes styled the piece with graduating wings and one button tuft on the trunk.

Q: How has your work evolved since you first started? How do you see it evolving in the future?

A: I have definitely learned a great deal about how important it’s been for us to focus not only on the aesthetic of a piece but also its purpose. Everybody is always so surprised with how comfortable our bits are — and that’s a reflection on the commitment to not only make really beautiful furniture, but really livable furniture too.


Sylvia Sofa

This bright and tailored sofa was scaled for a more intimate setting, so it has quite a petite frame. The high-back shape is finished with a set of bolster pillows for supreme relaxation.

Q: What are some of your favorite new design trends?

A: It’s a fad that’s been around for a while, but I’m still a sucker for the colour palette and symmetry that comes through with Moroccan design.

Q: What are a few of your new favorite furniture lines?

A: For instance goods, I really like Hellman-Chang and have enjoyed seeing their new goods. They are great men in addition to designing excellent furniture, so what’s not to enjoy?

Interior and Product Designer Reagan Hayes

Q: What designers (past and current ) inspire you?

A: taking a look at projects done by Orlando Diaz-Azcuy consistently gives me a great deal of fresh tips for balancing the distances that I design for clients and including a great deal of specific details. In furniture, I really like Jamie Drake’s layout — he is always pushing the envelope in an intriguing way.

More Tastemakers:
Meet Reiko Kaneko’s Modern China
Jared Rusten
Asaf Weinbroom

See related