Born in Japan and raised in Singapore and Texas, interior designer Sara Story knows from happily marrying influences. The founder of the eponymous design firm seamlessly mixes styles and textures—clean, linear spaces peppered with modern art and subtle Asian accents—for living environments that feel polished but never precious. “I’m all about creating atmospheres, not placing objects,” says Story, whose previous residential projects include a ranch in Texas, a TriBeCa loft for a twentysomething bachelor and a businessman’s penthouse in Singapore. “A room needs to be a place you can hang out, where the leather gets worn in and you’re not frightened to put down a drink.”
Drawing inspiration from her background and extensive travels, Story recently launched her own wallpaper line featuring contemporary interpretations of her favorite Asian motifs. (See “Wow-Inducing Wallpapers” for a sample.) “I rarely like to see a room papered wall to wall. Wallpaper is all about scale. It’s perfect for powder rooms, vestibules, ceilings—just flashes of drama,” she advises. The designer plans to follow with a more monochromatic wallpaper range late this year.