It would be easy for a designer to the stars to capitalize on high-profile projects by using them as showcases for a signature style. Far harder is the humble approach driven by a sensitivity to each client and place, which yields spaces that can’t be pinned to a particular creator.

The latter is the tack New York–based designer Shawn Henderson has chosen as he has orchestrated interiors for celebrity clients including Will Farrell, Octavia Spencer, and Sam Rockwell, as well as for private families across the country. It’s also the theme of the designer’s first monograph, Interiors In Context, released this week by Monacelli Press.

This week marks the release of interior designer Shawn Henderson’s first monograph, Interiors In Context (Monacelli Press, 2021). Photo by Stephen Kent Johnson

The book highlights a broad array of residences, from the designer’s own West Village apartment to a Mississippi country estate to a Montana chalet, in which the homeowners’ unique tastes and values are conveyed with sophistication and grace. It also hints at Henderson’s strong ties to Colorado’s high country with the inclusion of two Aspen homes: a minimalist retreat on a ranch of some 80 acres, created in collaboration with Robbins Architecture; and a low-slung, modern home with architecture by Studio B, in which Henderson showcased the clients’ impressive collection of furnishings and artwork. In this house, rich textures, rather than the tropes of mountain-home decor, convey comfort and warmth, while a few bold gestures—a massive, ice-blue faceted mirror here, an eight-piece photogravure there—bring drama without compromising the grandeur of up-close mountain views, framed by floor-to-ceiling expanses of glass. A preview of the inspiring design reveals more:


A wood-clad wall provides a warm backdrop for pieces from the homeowners’ impressive collection of art and furniture: an Antony Gormley sculpture, a Warren Platner stool, and a custom concrete and blackened-bronze bench by Eric Slayton. A tapestry by Claudy Jongstra hangs in the stairwell. Photo by Stephen Kent Johnson
Grand gestures—including an icy-blue Sam Orlando Miller faceted mirror and a 7-foot-wide coffee table—create impact, but not clutter, in the main living room. The cozy sheepskin-upholstered armchair is by Danish architect Flemming Lassen. Photo by Stephen Kent Johnson
In the dining room, a David Weeks light fixture presides over a table by contemporary French designer Martin Szekely and Italian chairs from the 1950s. The eight-part photogravure “Fernweh” (2009) is by British artist Tacita Dean. Photo by Stephen Kent Johnson
The light-filled kitchen’s sleek cabinetry and quiet color palette defer attention to the mountain views. Photo by Stephen Kent Johnson
A striking woven painting by Brent Wadden adorns the main bedroom’s textured wall. The platform bed is by Studio B. Photo by Stephen Kent Johnson
A limestone niche in the main bathroom holds a custom cypress-wood Japanese soaking tub. Photo by Stephen Kent Johnson

Interiors In Context ($60) will be released on November 9, 2021.