Clients are delighted to work with him, and he is attracted by their personalities and enthusiasm for the creative aspects of the project. “Budget is not a deciding factor. The design challenge is what matters. I enjoy working with people who are intrigued by the process, and have a fantasy dream that they trust me to unify in an unusual way. My designs are not for the faint of heart,” he notes. “The colors, the patterns, the textiles all weave a story. Mine happens to be bold, fearless and happy.”
Drawing from muses that include designer legends like Sister Parish, Billy Baldwin, Michael Taylor and Dorothy Draper, he skillfully dissects and reinterprets their work to make a fresh statement that is easily identifiable as his. He credits this ability to find and reinterpret designs from the past while embracing new ideas to years of trusted partnership with his late mentor and friend, Bill Diamond.
“I didn’t start my design career from scratch and I’m proud of it,” he says. “I consider those whose work I study to be my teachers in providing a continuity of American design. It can’t be copied, you just let it seep in.”
He proudly acknowledges that, depending upon the project, his designs swing from ultramodern to the most traditional of tastes. Delving into the past to explore themes that he will evolve to match the personality of his clients, Baratta stays ahead of the curve by consistently reimagining enduring ideas in new ways, and expressing them in unexpected textures, colors and forms. He also has the confidence and sense of adventure to pioneer new products as they are introduced.