When Jane Bradford was a kid, she loved elements of design—before she even knew what “design” was. Taking cues from her mother, who had a knack for sewing, Bradford learned to admire gorgeous textiles; inspired by her father’s passion for urban planning and historical architecture, she developed a deep fondness for beautiful buildings. Such exposure made a big impact, as Bradford now runs her nearly-two-year-old eponymous design firm in Denver, through which the up-and-coming designer creates spaces that are highly functional and lovely to behold.

Jane Bradford Designs
Soft hues and pretty patterns mingle in this Country Club dining room designed by Jane Bradford. Photo by Susie Brenner

5280 Home: After 13 years in the industry, you launched your own business. Tell us about that.
Jane Bradford: It was the right time. Too simple? I wanted a full creative outlet, the highs and lows, the responsibility for every part of a project.

What drives your approach?
When I first visit my clients’ homes, I learn about the look my clients want to achieve, and I also pay attention to the details they’re trying to hide: the kids’ soccer cleats by the back door, the overflowing cabinets, the spaces that are worn from a lot of use. The way I design their home should fit their lives, too.

Describe your own personal design style.
[My home] is a little louder than what I typically create for someone else’s space. I love textiles; I love artwork; I love street art. I guess you could say my home is eclectic with a bohemian global influence.

Where else do you find inspiration?
The way [jewelry designer] Vivian Drew plays with color and different materials and shapes gets my brain thinking: How can I make a space feel like that jewelry? And Jean Stoffer is my ultimate favorite interior designer. When I grow up, I want to be her.

Speaking of favorites, tell us about this gorgeous home you designed in Country Club.
We wanted to capture the client’s style—feminine and whimsical yet sophisticated—while bringing attention to the original character of the home. We restained the original millwork and painted the kitchen’s existing cabinets. The dining room got a face-lift too; every-one loves the Schumacher wallcovering.

Any design advice to share?
Don’t be afraid of color! I’m tired of everything being gray—though I do see that trend morphing into something more interesting. Hallelujah! Sometimes people assume color and serenity are opposed, but you can create beautiful, serene spaces with saturated hues, especially if you play with different tones of a few shades in a room.

Jane’s Favorite Things

Local maker: New Collar Goods
Local shops: Antiques Etc., DecorAsian, The Lark
Wallpaper source: Thibaut
Fabric source: Manuel Canovas and Susan Connor New York

This article was originally published in 5280 Home December 2020/January 2021.
Hilary Masell Oswald
Hilary Masell Oswald
As the former editor for two of 5280’s ancillary publications, Hilary Masell Oswald split her time between the vibrant design-and-architecture scene in the metro area for 5280 Home and the always-changing field of health for the annual 5280 Health.