The Mind of an Interior Designer: Betsy Wentz


April 12, 2024

(Q) What does Kips Bay mean to you? What does it mean to be a designer for this showhouse?

A: It’s such an honor to be included in the Kips Bay show house, it’s my second time doing it. I did it in 2020, and it’s just an honor, and it’s a privilege, and it’s for a wonderful cause. We get to meet so many wonderful designers and other people, and they’re lifelong friendships. You get to put your footprint on something more on a national stage, which is great. It was fun to be able to flex and do something. When you do a show house, you don’t have a client, so it’s fun to be able to stretch those limits and see what you can do. Although I do love the collaboration of a client. It’s really fun to pretend like you’re just designing it for yourself. What you would do in your wildest dreams.

(Q) Let’s start with your name, your company, and your room. Tell us a little bit about yourself and your interests?

A: I’m Betsy Wentz with Betsy Wentz Interior Design. We’re a Pittsburgh-based design firm and this is “The Parlor!” I’m probably most known for my use of color and bold pattern mixing and this Kips Bay show house gives me the perfect opportunity to display those skills.

(Q) Tell us about your room and the inspiration behind the design.

A: It’s a parlor, it’s meant to be a place where people can gather and just sort of stop, take a break, and linger. I wanted it to be whimsical and playful and I wanted it to be a place where it was just pure fun. Obviously the wall coverings and the fabrics were really primary, but for me, this bar was a huge opportunity to do something special. In true form, I wanted color, so that’s where Primestones was really such a lifesaver, because when I started to look at the slabs there were so many options and I fell in love with this Cristallo Turquoise. It’s patterned, it’s colorful. It’s everything I would be looking for and I think it really does a lot to draw the whole space together. No matter where you look, there’s color, there’s pattern, there’s no relief. I wanted it to be energetic, and I think we accomplished that.

(Q) What kind of vibe and aesthetic were you aiming to achieve in the project?

A: Hallways are often overlooked, and folks don’t think about furnishing or putting color and fabrics in them. One of my favorite things about this space was the ability to make it useful. While it is a hallway, it also can be a place where people linger, a place where people want to have a drink on the second floor, which is kind of unique.

(Q) What did the stone help you accomplish in your overall design? What drew you to the stone you selected?

A: The process of working with Primestones was incredibly easy for us. We first went on the website to sort of peruse the products and see, and honestly, we had a really hard time deciding which to narrow it down, which samples we wanted to get, and we were between the one that we ultimately chose and a bolder cobalt blue. They were both so beautiful. We received the samples in the mail in a very timely fashion and were able to make the selection. And from there, this slab was selected, templated and was a seamless process.

Watch Betsy's interview here: