The weather is warming up and spring has finally sprung in the beautiful Bluegrass State. That means that we are less than one month away from the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby! There are so many ways to celebrate and get into the spirit of the season. We met with interior designer and color connoisseur Isabel Ladd to gather a few tips on how to maximize your Derby season curb appeal and create a vibrant, grand entrance for your home or entryway in a few easy steps.
Step 1) Ladd recommends first framing your doorway with something bold to create a memorable entrance to your home for the occasion. She chose two majestic palms placed on either side of her front door to create an eye-catching display and set the tone. “You can get smaller versions of palms at big-box stores, but go to a greenhouse if you would like something larger than the standard sizes.”   
Step 2) Choose a color palette. “There are a lot of colors that you can use for spring but I recommend keeping the colors very close on the color wheel and using different tones to create a harmonious look that has more impact. Today I am using various shades of pinks and reds to pull together both Oaks and Derby. Other high-impact combinations would be yellow and orange, blue and purple or even pink and purple.”
Step 3) Choose foliage and blooms with various textures. Ladd emphasizes that mixing textures to create layers and interest is a very important step to creating a memorable, stand-out look. “I chose azaleas which is very thick and dense in florals and balanced it with a pink hibiscus that has loose foliage with vines. I topped it off with geraniums to add a punch of texture and green.”
Step 4) Add a nod to the theme of the celebration with equine inspired decor. “I chose a moss horse from Pemberton’s Greenhouse in Lexington. They have many shapes and sizes of horses to choose from.” 
Step 5) “This is important. When arranging your entryway look, start with symmetry, and then create groupings that are asymmetrical. Too much symmetry is boring.”  Ladd began her look with symmetrical palms and then creatively mixed the colors and textures to build a gorgeous and eye-catching entryway perfect for Derby season.
Feeling inspired? Now you are ready to create a masterpiece to welcome your neighbors, family and friends! As we get closer to the first Saturday of May, share your Kentucky Derby inspired ideas and décor on social media by using #DerbyAtHome. Have a beautiful and safe Run for the Roses!  
By Catherine Jones

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