Catching Up with Canvas's Christina Cole

Interior Design Expert Brings Her International Experience Home

Article by Jennifer Birn

Photography by Shade Degges

Originally published in Austin Lifestyle

Award-winning designer Christina Cole Abboud’s work spans hospitality, single-family homes, multi-units and commercial spaces. She’sdesigned penthouses in Paris and taught Architecture, Urban Design and History in Barcelona, Spain. But home is Austin, where she recently celebrated the one-year anniversary of her textile studio Canvas and is slated to open a second location this month. 

You’ve done a lot in your career the last dozen years. If you had to pick one thing to do for the rest of your life, what would it be and why? I’m doing it!  Interior Design is my passion and my career so I don’t see the trajectory changing in the future. I hope I get to continue doing this for the rest of my life.

What project have you been most proud of? The Paris project was the most pivotal project of my career because of the international experience it brought, but there are proud moments that exist in every project where collaboration and trust with clients results in something special.

What questions are you asked most often when people hire you for a new design or renovation? The most common questions at the onset of a project are topics around, cost, timing and process. 

What’s the single best thing people can do to make their home appear:

Bigger? Have furniture and lighting that is appropriately scaled for your room and remember to include negative space in the design.  

Brighter? Choose light, neutral colors that are reflective and can move light across surfaces.

Updated? Make selections that feel current but timeless.  Overly trendy selections will date quickly.

Where should people invest money when renovating their home? If the budget allows, I recommend investing in a designer.  Designers can help the homeowner realize a cohesive vision, avoid expensive mistakes, and advocate for their best interests with builders and contractors. Outside of a designer, investing in quality lighting and plumbing fixtures can elevate the visual impact and experience of a space.

Where do people generally overspend when they shouldn’t? People generally overspend when they don’t have a clear vision. They focus on individual elements rather than the total composition. If they can see the total composition, they can see opportunities to mix high and low. Having a comprehensive design before starting is a great way to avoid overspending.

What are your favorite stores in Austin for good home renovation finds? J&L Hardware, Delta Millworks and Alkusari Stone.

What’s a career goal you’re still striving to attain? Enjoy my new textile showroom, support my clients, and continuously be creative.

What’s on the horizon that you’re excited about? The second location of my textile showroom is opening and will feature an expanded collection of rugs and fabric lines that are exclusive to Texas.   


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