70 | | June 2011 p hoto by M a rk LohM a n the radar | design All thAt Glitters A modern silvered bathtub takes center stage in a lynn Pries-designed emerald Bay estate. Simple Pleasures This season sees interior design going back to basics—with a modern twist. | By Carrie Storke Williams | We’ve a ll experienced that sense of relief that comes with the a nnua l de-cluttering of spring cleaning. Take that simplification a step further and realize the rela xation that’s possible in a pared-down interior that doesn’t ask you to visually “multitask ” with an abundance of knick-knacks. This less-is-more approach is currently taking hold in homes up and down the O.C. coast. “I feel a move toward simplicit y,” says Newport Beach-based interior designer K aren Wight of Wight House Design. “That doesn’t specifica lly mean modern style; it means taking your style and making it work in a more streamlined way. We are moving at a faster pace, using multimedia devices on a minute-to-minute basis, and, by the time you come home, you want to take it down a notch, not ramp it up. We need some visual peace and quiet.” Here, Wight and other noted O.C. designers offer their tips for creating aesthetic Zen in your own home. The Upside of Downsizing “We’re trending away from McMansions to sma ller homes, spending less money on less decorated rooms with less detail,” says interior designer Lynn Pries of Lynn Pries Design in Laguna Beach. Formerly k nown for creating spectacular, large-sca le interiors centered on Europea n a ntiques a nd a r tifact s, Pries is practicing what she preaches, hav i ng rec ent ly lef t her sprawl i ng Provenç a l ma nse i n Pel ic a n Cre st i n favor of a cha rming L a g u na Beach cot ta ge — a nd ne w design in fluences. Currently, Pries’ strongest influence is interior design guru A xel Vervoordt. “Ver voordt writes about the Japanese principle of wabi and the elegance of continued ... simple, natural objects,” she says.