The Essence of Grace
Often, the most richly pleasing aspects of life can also be the most difficult to put into words. Grace and charm work their magic most effectively when served up with a subtle touch. The truly sublime never calls too much attention to itself. That is its allure. And therein lies its power.
“You take these disparate parts, and bring them together to make it look like it’s all part of the same story.”
Each Vision is Unique
At the outset of any project, Roger Higgins begins by focusing on one deceptively simple question: What is right for this house? By marrying his own singular instinct with the personalities and lifestyles of the home’s occupants, a vision materializes into a stunning reality.
“Sometimes you don’t need to do much. I just try to make sure that whatever we do goes with whatever part of the story is already happening in that house.”
Whether he turns his hand to a simple bedroom makeover marking a daughter’s 16th birthday, or a sweeping 12,000 sq. ft. vacation estate, every project receives the same unwavering commitment. And there is literally no limit to the level of service this team can provide.
“We just finished a grueling installation in a remote mountain house,” Roger explains. It was a giant amount of work, and incredibly challenging in so many ways. But when it all came together, the clients couldn’t have been happier. They walked in the door and it was done. Every plate, every towel, every chair, pillow, lamp, and rug. Everything down to the dog bowls and dog food. I love the completion. That feeling of handing over the finished product – that’s why we do it.”
Ann Shipp, Roger’s partner in business and in life, goes a step further: “Our clients provide us a massive level of trust. When you think about the amount of money being spent, and to give that creative freedom – but they’ve seen what Roger has done before, and they just know it’s going to be great.
“Every client’s level of involvement is very different. Some are here all the time, wanting to see every fabric and every trim. And of course we’re happy to accommodate. But I feel Roger works more creatively when they just see his sketches and let him run with something.”
And run he will.
Roger’s highly refined style springs from a gifted imagination, perfectly coupled with a deep appreciation for the classic elements of architecture. He has an uncanny knack for making surprising design choices that still feel effortless and inevitable, once assembled in context.
“Once I see in my mind’s eye what a room is going to look like, fortunately I’m able to draw it. I find it so much easier to communicate a vision that way, rather than trying to describe it with words. Honestly, I didn’t even realize I could draw until I went to school to study design.”
After graduating from Tennessee Wesleyan College, Roger majored in Historic Preservation Design at O'More College of Design before establishing R. Higgins Interiors with Ann Shipp in 1994.
With her incredible attention to detail and boundless energy, Roger’s partner Ann oversees all aspects of the business. Her extensive list of resources, references and goals is legendary among all who know her.
“Roger will be out shopping, and every time he ends up choosing pieces that have all of us wondering what on earth he’s thinking. But then in combination, and in context, it’s all somehow perfect. He sees things and imagines things that others don’t.”
Ann earned her Interior Design degree from O'More College of Design and partnered with Roger to establish R. Higgins Interiors in 1994.
Mary Fowler Howell
Mary Fowler enjoys the process behind a project whether it be drawing plans or hashing out the details of a custom design.
The true reward is watching the process come to fruition. I appreciate and learn from Ann’s capacity to problem solve and execute. I admire Roger’s ability to bring a space to life on paper and his intuitive understanding of client’s vision.
Mary Fowler graduated from Butler University with a degree in Ballet Performance before earning her Interior Design degree from O’More College of Design.
Virginia thrives on new opportunities and fresh challenges. Fortunately, we have no shortage of either.
“No two days here are ever the same. Each day I learn something new from Roger and Ann – they’re just such wonderful mentors.”
Virginia earned her Interior Design Degree from Valdosta State University in Georgia.
Georgia’s favorite parts of the job are surprising – poring over structural drawings, making door schedules, and cabinet hardware counts.
"Learning from and getting to laugh with Ann and Roger is a guarantee here at R. Higgins, but I find the most enjoyment from making sure every small detail on a project is perfect and finding the unconventional solution to an unexpected problem."
Georgia graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Emory University, in Atlanta, Georgia.
Chelsey loves the atmosphere around the office and appreciates all the assistance provided by our intrepid office dogs, Birdie, and Lillie.
“I truly feel like we are a family here – we laugh together every single day and even in times of stress, we can always take a moment to appreciate the positive things in life.”
One of Kelsey’s favorite things about her job is seeing the strong camaraderie between all team members, regardless of their official roles.
“It's so exciting to see a project start from the very beginning, then seeing the final product and knowing that everyone on the team had some part in that project’s success.”
Accounting & Finance Manager
Mentor. Teacher. Friend.
Judy first began working with Ann Shipp in the days before Ann and Roger merged their businesses. She has amassed a lifetime of knowledge on every aspect of custom framing, and generously shares her deep expertise in gold leaf and other artisanal finishes.
Birdie and Lillie
Though rarely shy about sharing their opinions, neither of our resident muses could be reached for comment.