As the founder and creative director of Lisa Mende Design, Lisa has built a reputation as one of the South’s premier luxury designers. She is known for creating bold, modern interiors that are rooted in tradition; antiques and vintage pieces, mixed with modern classics and original art are the hallmarks of her designs. But what is this successful designer really like? To get the real inside scoop, Jennifer McGraw went to the most honest source she could find: the family dog.
Get to know Lisa, through the eyes of her pup Wrigley, in Dog Bytes.
Jen: Hello Wrigley! Your person is designer extraordinaire Lisa Mende of Lisa Mende Design. Can you tell me how old you are and if you have any siblings?
Wrigley: I’m chuffed and I feel so famous! I am only a year old. Is it good to have my five minutes of fame so early in my life? I have a brother named Oliver. He is old and narky most of the time. Is he being interviewed too?
Jen: No, just you Wrigley. And by the way, you sound like Bill Murray…..with a British accent! Do you have a nickname? Most dogs have one.
Wrigley: Yup! Although, I am a little embarrassed about it. My nickname is BINKY.
That sounds like a name for a 2 lb. chihuahua. And when mum calls me Binky she uses this ridiculously high pitched voice with that southern drawl of hers that makes my left eye twitch. But she loves me so much so I deal with it. “BINKY come in for a treat” “BINKY boy, let’s go!”
Jen: Do you know how the name Binky came to be?
Wrigley: It may have something to do with a small child and a diaper bag incident. Teasing. I think that is typically what you call a comical British chap. When mum is mad at me she calls me STINKY BINKY. In a deep voice, not that high-pitched one.
Jen: Your mama is very active on social media. I see you on her Instagram page sometimes.
Wrigley: OMG my mum is always posting! And the posts are always so brightly colored! Every. Last. One. I could be choking or jumping on the back door to go out and there is mum: little fingers moving feverishly to post. “Nothing quite like a pretty boathouse.” “When a powder room is more than just a powder room.” “BINKY hold this flag in your mouth. I need to take a July 4th photo,” she says. I can’t blame her for posting pics of me, people respond quite nice to me. It’s like they have never met a Welsh Terrier before.
Jen: Yes, your mom does love color. The brighter the better. So now the big question is: do you get involved with her designs?
Wrigley: Of course! My mum says that I am a self-proclaimed critic of the finest fabrics and furnishings. I call it the “BINKY TEST.” I lay on it and if I love it I spin around 3 times. Oh and remember last year when mum Lisa did the Hampton Showhouse and used that huge Ngala chandelier? That was my idea! She took me to a showroom that had that piece of beautifulness hanging and I kept barking at it and jumping to see if my little feet could grab ahold of just one of those leather pieces hanging down. Full disclosure: I wanted to chew on the fringe but that’s another story. Mommy knew that I was obsessed with it and decided to go with it. I am pretty sure everyone loved that piece. It was brilliant, yes? My idea.
Jen: Wrigley, you are super creative! Now, tell me something about your mom that we don’t know.
Wrigley: Mum can’t eat meat.
Jen: Really? Why?
Wrigley: She never ate meat as a child and when she got to college she realized that her body cannot digest meat. So don’t take mum out for a burger LOL! The ironic thing
is that her family is in the meat industry. So she is the black sheep of the family. Poor mum.
Jen: Very interesting. Okay, tell me what you and mom do at night.
Wrigley: Mum loves Netflix. Every night we snuggle on the sofa and she watches “Marcella” but now she is loving some show called “Killing Eve.” There is a lot
of LOUD music in that show. I don’t like it so I go nuts barking at the tv trying to make it stop. Mum gets mad and banishes me to the courtyard to calm down. This happens every night. Why is that music so loud? Don’t they know dogs have sensitive ears? Sheesh.
Jen: I bet you sleep in bed with mom. Am I right?
Wrigley: Ha! No sir. I sleep in my own bed, or crate I should say. When I’m knackered, I want my own space. No sharing for me. I love the safety of my crate and mum has it in the kitchen so I can keep the house safe. Some of my mates would not like to sleep in a crate but I actually love it. I guess I am an independent chap.
Jen: Does Lisa have a secret obsession?
Wrigley: Well, if I tell you it’s not a secret anymore, right? But she does. It’s Donna Karan Cashmere mist deodorant. You can’t make this stuff up. She brings me to the store sometimes when she buys it. It’s like $25 per bottle! I think that is bloody expensive but she refuses to use anything else. She makes all her friends try it. Whatever makes mum happy, right?
Jen: Yes! You have been a pleasure, Wrigley. Thank you.
Wrigley: My pleasure, mate.
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