LUXList Designer Edition | Kriste Michelini

Coming from a background in software and real estate, Kriste Michelini certainly has a more varied story than we typically see in the design world. By no means, however, does this set her back. Kriste uses her prior experience to implement a smooth, streamlined process for her design projects that always results in chic finished products. With a great eye for color schemes and a talent for blending disparate shapes and lines, we’re honored to introduce her as this week’s LUXList Designer.

What does modern and fresh look like on RubyLUX? Find out with Kriste’s picks.

Kriste’s LUXList Picks

Patinated brass swing arm sconces with domed shades by Franco Albini
Werkstatte Hagenauer Wien Bookends
“Monolite” Flair Edition Marble Lamp
Carton Desk by Sébastien de Ganay

Describe your design aesthetic in a few words?

Classic, modern and fresh.

What do you love about using antiques in your designs?

We aim to incorporate an antique or two into our rooms through rugs, artwork, vintage lighting, tables or chairs. Every room needs an antique to give the room soul and character.  I prefer rooms with unique pieces that are acquired and passed on as opposed to everything being new in a room. I really enjoy the juxtaposition and tension that comes when you combine traditional antiques with modern pieces.

What inspires you?

It could be an outfit, nature, the ocean and of course travel…always travel.

What is your favorite LUXList piece and why?  How would you use it?

I love this Carton desk.  It is stunning and handsome.  It really is a piece of sculpture. Gorgeous.


Accent pieces like these  light fixtures and wooden barstools instantly take a minimally chic design to another level.
Combining curves and straight lines into spaces that are beautiful to behold is one of Kriste’s strengths.
White interiors don’t need to be boring. Kriste knows how to add the perfect amount of color to achieve a sophisticated balance.

In 2002, after 10 years in the software industry and three years in commercial real estate, Kriste Michelini turned her long-time passion for creating cool, calm spaces into a thriving professional interior design career. Combining her eye for classic, modern interiors with her corporate-world know-how, she delivers beautiful results with a smooth, streamlined process—a rarity in the world of creatives.

Since launching Kriste Michelini Interiors, Michelini has earned numerous accolades from the press and the design community, including recently being named one of Traditional Home 2014 New Trads, a group of emerging designers redefining the traditional landscape. Her work has also been featured by CA Home + Design, Lonny, Rue, Remodelista, and more.

Budgets are her best friends; getting organized is her R&R, and deadlines are smooth sailing. Residential or commercial, large or small, whatever that scope of the project, she’s found that listening to her clients’ needs is always the foundation for a successful design and a long-lasting relationship. And as a wife and mother of three, she knows all too well that form is never without function. Kriste is a UCLA graduate and lives in Alamo, California.