A Conversation with Tula Summerford @designbytula

Tula is an award-winning interior designer, based in Raleigh, North Carolina, known for creating rooms that are richly layered with vibrant color, patterned fabrics and treasured objects from around the world. Her extensive background in textiles and interiors spans over 20 years.

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How did you get started in design?

The Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City is where Tula became immersed in the world of design. Tula worked for two of the most prestigious design houses in the industry and was responsible for identifying the newest fashion and color trends for each new season and developing the company’s new product lines. Tula relocated to North Carolina where she became the New Products Design and Development Manager for Westwood Incorporated and coordinated product design, production and technical matters, and sales support between the New York office and the manufacturing facilities throughout the country

Palmer Petite Renaissance Sink Legs in Aged Brass

How do you approach the creative process & problem-solving in design?

Problems take time to solve. I try to stay committed and resilient throughout the process. Problem-solving is a skill that can be honed with practice. It’s also important to approach problems with a positive attitude and a willingness to learn from both successes and failures.

What aspects of Palmer products complement your brand style?

Palmer Renaissance Sink Legs in Aged Brass

I love how Palmer’s finishes and array of styles exude elegance in any configuration and style element. I am inspired by the architecture of the past but I design with the future in mind.

“Palmer’s sink legs & shelving are the intersection of where timeless elegance meets functional artistry.”

Inspiration Comes in Many Forms

Essex Leg System in Polished Nickel

Lots of conversations. I listen to my client’s thoughts and tailor my design to their individual style. Building a rapport with each client is at the heart of my design philosophy. To achieve this, I delve into their aspirations, desires, and functional needs for their space.

I firmly believe that the more I understand my clients, the better I can infuse their personality into the design. Also, I have found that it is so important to approach problems with a positive attitude and a willingness to learn from both successes and failures.

“I’m inspired by color, textures and travel. I’m inspired by design and architecture from both the past and present. I look to the past for my forward-thinking projects.”

Awards and Recognition

Raleigh's Best Interior Designer
2021, 2022, 2023

Featured in
Vanity Fair, House Beautiful, Elle Decor and Others

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