Happy Father’s Day – Men’s Spaces

“Men’s Spaces” is excerpted from Southern Coastal Living: Stylish Lowcountry Homes by J. Banks Design  by Joni Vanderslice


In almost every home that we do now, the men want one room that is their own designated domain: a place where they can get away to, concentrate, watch a football game. They always want these personal spaces to reflect their interests: golf, boats and the nautical life, travel, whatever it may be. Part of the fun for me is pulling that information out of them. Watching them settle in once the rooms are complete is such a pleasure. They really use their rooms. Usually, they cannot wait to show off their space to their friends and visiting family members.

I have found that in men’s spaces, wood is particularly important. Men seem to truly love beautiful woods, especially when it is stained in rich, dark shades. They also love texture. In my experience, they also have an eye for items that show the touch of the hand—pieces that may not be quite as finely finished or as perfect as those we would use elsewhere in the home. Once the essential elements are in place, the challenge lies in finding or creating those pieces—whether whimsical or pertaining to a special interest—that express their character, reflect their personality, and capture their passion.

My husband, Rick, has his special place (left) at the top of our house, overlooking the water, just off the area where our daughters do all their art, craft, and sewing projects. We’ve filled it with items that reflect his passions for hunting, fishing, and Africa—including the antique maps of Africa that I collect for him. The old maps are fascinating, in part because it took such a long time to map the entire continent, and in part because the boundaries of the countries have changed so much over the centuries. His maps document the transitions of colonialism, as well as the eras before and after. Each is different and has its own history. I’ve been able to find them at auctions, which I love. Because Rick is a doctor, my stepmother searches out a gift each Christmas that is related to medicine; she is the force behind his collection of antique medical bags. His fishing gear is handy, as are his hunting trophies. It truly is a man’s space.


Joni Vanderslice is the Founder & President of J. Banks Design Group and the designer of the J. Banks Collections for EJ Victor, Stanford Furniture, Kravet, New Ravenna and  Paragon Art, 

J. Banks Design Honored By Home Accents Today Magazine



The J. Banks Design Showroom, our home furnishings and design store in Hilton Head Island, SC has been honored with a 2019 Retail Star from the Editors of Home Accents Today, the premier trade magazine for the home accents industry.

Our 3500 sq. foot shop at 35 Main Street, Hilton Head Island is a great local resources for gifts, accessories and home decor.  The interior design retail store is open to all of Hilton Head Island, Bluffton, the Lowcountry and its visitors. The shop offers sophisticated home décor, artisan inspired gifts, and eclectic little luxuries – all gathered from the worldwide marketplace. We also offer an exquisite bridal registry.

Joni Vanderslice and the J. Banks Design buying team bring together specialty pieces and small treasures that are not widely accessible. From serving pieces and lamps; to jewelry and decorative accessories, expect to find goods that will enhance your personal lifestyle. The shop is also the perfect backdrop to showcase the furniture and fabrics from the J. Banks Collections for EJ Victor, Stanford Furniture, Paragon and New Ravenna. Designed by Joni Vanderslice, the J. Banks Collection offers timeless style that melds effortlessly into any décor.

The Retail Stars list, sponsored by AmericasMart Atlanta and Las Vegas Market, publishes each year in the Home Accents Today May issue. Members of the home furnishings industry are invited to suggest stores, and retailers are encouraged to submit information describing their businesses. This year’s list was compiled and narrowed down by research analysts and Thomas Lester, Home Accents Today’s business editor.

The Retail Stars list, now in its 15th year, honors independent brick-and-mortar retailers of home accents – including furniture stores, home accessories boutique stores and interior design showrooms – that merchandise creatively, have a positive presence in their local communities and stand out from the competition.

“Home Accents Today’s 2019 Retail Stars list showcases some of the best independent home décor and home furnishings retailers in the country,” said Lester. “They are rising above the challenges of an ever-changing retail environment and are raising the bar for their innovations in marketing and merchandising strategies, customer service and community contributions. This annual honor recognizes their skills, hard work and dedication, and should serve as a reminder to us all to support local businesses.”

Among this year’s batch of Stars, 30 opened their doors after the turn of the century while 24 welcomed customers prior to 2000.

This year’s honorees call 23 states and one Canadian province their home, though many also have stores beyond those borders. Texas leads the way this year with five Retail Stars, including a cluster in the greater Dallas area. Ohio, Colorado and New York have four Stars each while Virginia, Arizona, Florida, California and North Carolina each have three honored stores. Louisiana, Tennessee, South Carolina, Kentucky, Georgia, Illinois, Washington and Connecticut have a pair of Stars while Iowa, North Dakota, Mississippi, Indiana, Arkansas, British Columbia and Oregon each have a single Star.

the team at J Banks Design Group attends Maison et Objet and Paris Deco Off during Paris Design Week

Paris Design Week – January 2019

J. Banks Design Group’s President Joni Vanderslice and Melissa Mittag, Director of Brand Management, traveled to Paris last month for Paris Design Week to attend Maison et Objet and Paris Deco Off, two of the international interior design community’s most inspirational shows.  To have an international perspective elevates the level of design we are able to create and serves to inspire the entire J. Banks Design Group team.

lobby at Homewood Suites in Cary, NC, designed by J Banks Design Group, with mid-century modern light fixtures

Homewood Suites by Hilton Raleigh/Cary, NC

J. Banks Design Group recently completed the design of all interiors of the new Homewood Suites by Hilton Raleigh/Cary. The scenic wooded area surrounding the Homewood Suites by Hilton® Raleigh/Cary hotel is located in MacGregor Park in Cary, North Carolina. The extended stay hotel is minutes from Raleigh and Research Triangle Park and 12 miles from Raleigh Durham International Airport. Developed, owned and managed by Parks Hospitality Group, the 108-suite hotel is a new extended stay addition in the Raleigh-Cary metro area, the 14th fastest growing metro in the country and the fastest in North Carolina.

ribbon-cutting at the Embassy Suites in St. Augustine, the interiors and outdoor living spaces designed by the J. Banks Design Group

Embassy Suites by Hilton St. Augustine – Official Ribbon Cutting

The official ribbon cutting ceremony for the Embassy Suites by Hilton, St. Augustine’s only beachfront resort, took place on January 17, 2019 and we were lucky to be on hand to celebrate.  Developed by Miami-based Key International, the Embassy Suites by Hilton St. Augustine Beach is the only luxury resort on the city’s ocean shore, and one of only five beachfront properties with a resort designation under the Embassy Suites by Hilton flag.  J. Banks Design Group was engaged to complete the interiors, including 175 guest rooms, 25,000 square feet of meeting space and two restaurants.

a sitting area in the clubhouse at the WaterWalk at Shelter Cove by J. Banks Design Group awash in oceanic blues

WaterWalk at Shelter Cove Towne Centre

We are always thrilled when we get to work locally, and WaterWalk at Shelter Cove Towne Centre was no exception. WaterWalk includes two high-end mid-rise residential buildings located less than 500 yards apart on the southern shore of Broad Creek. This new coastal residential community on Hilton Head Island offers sweeping waterfront views, maintenance-free living, resort-style amenities and a luxury lifestyle. The property is within walking distance of shopping, dining, and entertainment.

J. Banks Design group at timbers kiawah ocean club grand opening

Timbers Kiawah Ocean Club & Residences Opening

Timbers Kiawah Ocean Club & Residences recently celebrated its grand opening and J. Banks Design Group President Joni Vanderslice, along with team-members Laura Page Bischofberger, Blake Pettit and Victoria King, attended the ribbon cutting ceremony.  As Interior Designers on the project, J. Banks Design Group wanted to create a new design vernacular that adds a contemporary twist to the traditional beach resort.

ej victor collage of j banks collection furnishings

J. Banks Collection for EJ Victor

The award-winning J. Banks Design Group has partnered with North Carolina-based high-end furniture company, EJ Victor, to develop a line of furniture that provides elevated, luxurious design for both residential and hospitality consumers. In their first-ever collaboration, J. Banks and EJ Victor harnessed their collective industry and market expertise to develop The J. Banks Collection for EJ Victor, which launched at High Point Market, October 12-17, at the EJ Victor showroom.

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