Design Detour: Paloma Contreras


Design writer, shop maven and style star Paloma Contreras infuses classic silhouettes and timeless pieces with glamour, color and a well-placed push-pull moment. “An element of tension can make a beautifully designed room feel modern,” Contreras says. “It may come from introducing a masculine silhouette into an otherwise feminine space, an antique into a contemporary room, or perhaps the addition of a bold piece of abstract art in a room filled with traditional furnishings.” This design sensibility feels utterly at home in Houston, with its melting pot of cultural influences. Contreras strives to build a great rapport with her clients, an effort helped along by any designer’s holy trinity of project conditions: “a healthy budget, a generous timeline and an implicit trust to allow me to do my best work.”

Photography by Aimee Mazzenga Photography


"Tiny’s No. 5 is a go-to neighborhood favorite for us! It feels a little like stepping into a Nancy Meyers movie, so it’s ideal for aesthetes. They’re famous for their delicious chocolate chip cookies which are a definite must. Trust me, they are worth the calories! It would be the perfect setting to have a dinner party with domestic goddesses, Martha Stewart and Ina Garten, and the design friends I’ll be traveling to Paris with in January: Caroline Gidiere, Mark D. Sikes, Bryan Huffman, Courtney Tilinski and Shelley Johnstone." 


"I opened my own brick and mortar store, Paloma & Co in early 2019. My goal was to create a highly curated experience for designers and design enthusiasts with an offering of European antiques, unusual found objects, original art by emerging Southern artists including William McLure, Alexis Walter, and Kayce Hughes, and an assortment of chic gifts, tabletop, and decorative accessories."

Bonnington Wall Sconce by AERINBonnington Wall Sconce by AERIN


"Inspired by my love of Georgian and Murano chandeliers, the sweeping arms of the Brigitte Large Chandelier from my new collection with Visual Comfort available at Circa Lighting are dramatic and glamorous, while its scale feels thoroughly fresh and modern."


"We are doing a great deal of custom furnishings for our projects lately, especially with the delays happening in the industry. I find that we can control the process a bit more when working with a local workroom. Neal & Co does a fabulous job of bringing even my most detailed ideas to life, resulting in heirloom quality furniture."


"I love the timelessness of chinoiserie mural wallpaper, especially hand-painted versions by de Gournay and Gracie. While Houston is very cosmopolitan, there is also a sense of tradition in the South, so chinoiserie wallpapers are beloved here. My current favorite is Xanadu Landscape by Iksel which I used in my infant daughter’s nursery. "

Add to Cart


"A chic evocation of French Moderne Style, the Comtesse Medium Triple Table Lamp from my new collection with Visual Comfort is delicately scaled, yet inherently strong. The sculptural silhouette makes quite a statement."


"Architectural character defines the elements of the Orsay series through a striking silhouette executed with seamless precision. An embodiment of modern elegance, the design of the Orsay Medium Floor Lamp, also from my collection, is incredibly versatile, benefitting any interior environment."


“The Dresser Long Glass Rod Light by Thomas O'Brien adds a touch of glamour while casting the most flattering light.”