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My favorite things



Name: Linden Laurent

Title: Senior designer, Betty Johnson Interiors, Whitefish Bay

The nice thing about Betty Johnson Interiors ó which has been in business for 50 years ó is the store isnít wrapped into any specific style. When walking through the vignettes of furnishings and accessories itís obvious that both contemporary and traditional styles are respected here. "We encompass all styles ... and a variety of looks ó from the very funky to contemporary, classic and traditional," says Linden Laurent, senior designer. "Sometimes we get into a rut where, ĎIt has to be this way,í so we try to show different ways of putting pieces together."

1. Ren-wil metal mirror with gold finish and small mirrors, $311

"To me, itís a very happy piece, and I like the way itís dispersing the light around. It also has a little bit of a retro look to it, reminiscent of the late í50s. It actually reminds me of the Galaxy, an old hotel near Disneyland."

2. John Richards floral painting, with gold-accented frame, $598.

"I like the intense colors of the flowers and the subtle background. The green is a really soothing color. This is also a piece you can put with a lot of different pieces."

3. Pride Sassar cocktail table, $826.

"I like the asymmetrical top. It almost looks like it was made out of an old door. It gives you this feeling of an antique piece. There are a lot of ways to accessorize this piece. Itís got a rustic country feel."

4. Two-tone, metal-finish side table, $578.

"I like the combination of the different materials for a faux leather look. You can use it in a contemporary or traditional setting."

5. E.J. Victor upholstered sofa in cream with chocolate-brown flecks, $4,030.

"It has the appearance of raw silk, but itís not. I like this, too, because the scale is very good. And it has braid trim at the bottom for a designer touch."