Portrait

Carole L. Okamoto is the principal and owner of Essense Interior Design. Before moving into
the world of design, Carole spent over 25 years in the healthcare industry. This background
gave her a deep sense that much of the "dis-ease" people experience is due, in part, to
unhealthy living environments. As a result, Carole's vision is to bring together three critical
bodies of knowledge to create environmentally healthy living spaces for her clients:

Environmental HealthCertified as a Master Home Environmentalist Volunteer (MHEV)
with the American Lung Association, Carole brings the knowledge and tools of her MHEV
training to her clients through environmental home assessments as desired.

Balanced Energy or 'Chi'Carole often applies Feng Shui principles to achieve greater
organization, order and balance for living spaces. This includes infusion of color energy which
can be strategically applied to achieve harmony and a sense of well-being for clients.

Sustainability or 'Green' LivingAs a member of the USGBC (United States Green
Building Council), Carole stays abreast of the latest sustainable industry resources and
materials. Active, on-going research of design materials is essential to ensure that they are
truly "green".


Early design influences

Frank Lloyd
Wright's
famous
waterfall house
integrated homes
within the context
of their natural
surroundings.

The movement
and simplicity in
the abstract,
calligraphic works
of Toko Shinoda.
We love most
everything she
does.

From the creative
power and
boldness of Frank
Gehry's
Bilbao
Museum in Spain

to Gehry's
cardboard
furniture and
fishlamps, these
all provide design
influences which
we draw
upon.

Charles Rennie
MacIntosh
was
a designer
who was way
ahead of his time
- his chairs and
paintings turned
furnishings into
works of art.

Joan Miro's use
of color and
abstract forms -
how she manages
to blend them
together in
sometimes simple,
sometimes
complex ways.

The fluidity of
Isamu Noguchi's
furniture and
lighting designs -
many of his
pieces are like
sculptures.

Constantin
Brancusi's

sculpted works
can trick the
viewer's eye into
seeing different
images. One of
our favorite
pieces at the Art
Institute of
Chicago shows
the frontal view
of this sculpture
appearing as an
African woman
while the view
from the side is
that of a fish.

The free-flowing
nature, simplicity
and fun of
Alexander Calder's
color mobiles.

We love the clean lines of the modern and post-modern periods. We are inspired by periods from the Arts & Crafts to the
Neo-Classics, especially those with Greek designs (such as spirals). We could easily integrate the organic, curvilineage of
Art Nouveau furnishings, artwork and architecture with the simple, clean furniture lines of the Regency period. We find delight
in the childlike folk art originating in Oaxaca, Mexico; the vibrant colors and textures of silk textiles from India; the multi layers
and influences from Japan - the simplicity of Zen, rice paper anything, silk textures; the daring colors and patterns weaved
into African textiles. These influences all coalesce whenever and wherever we design.

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