Architectural Digest to Partner with BIDN on First Ever All-Black Digital Designer Showhouse

by Freya Drohan

This Fall, interiors bible Architectural Digest will create a historic fully immersive, 360 degree shoppable virtual show house—named The Iconic Home—in partnership with the Black Interior Designers Network.

In the first effort of its kind, the showhouse will debut in November 2020 and feature over 10 black design professionals from across the country.

The venture’s name is in honor of the non-profit’s late founder, Kimberly Ward. The organization endeavors to create community, provide resources, and advocate for black designers in the industry. The partnership marks the first time a national magazine has aligned with a black-led interior design organization to produce an all-black designer showhouse on this level.

Samantha Josaphat, founder of Brooklyn-based Studio 397 Architecture designed the showhouse plans. There are over 15 rooms, including a home office and an uber-trendy ‘wellness room’. The purpose of the showhouse is to elevate the breadth of black interior designers’ creativity, influence, and professional talent on a national platform, helping to close the opportunity gap of the minority community.

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The Iconic Home, a virtual show house, will launch this November as a partnership between AD and the @blackinteriordesignersnetwork. Samantha Josaphat, founder of @studio397 Architecture, will design the plans, which will include some 15 rooms to be reimagined by ten-plus Black designers from across the U.S.. The show house’s name brings full circle a dream of the BIDN’s late founder, Kimberly Ward. Ward, who started the organization nine years ago, envisioned a show house as part of its future. “Partnering with Architectural Digest to produce a digital show house that is fully representative of Black interior designers is a dream come true to me, our members, and most importantly, Kimberly Ward,” says BIDN president @keiamcswain. “We have diligently worked with AD every step of the way to ensure that each decision, participant, and partner understands the need for both diversity and inclusivity, and openly celebrates Black design talent and works towards a more representative future.” . Learn more on @archdigestpro through the link in our profile. Text by @katy_magic

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In a release, Architectural Digest editor in chief Amy Astley said, “AD‘s partnership with the Black Interior Designers Network is a proud moment in the brand’s 100 year history and The Iconic Home will truly bring the best of design to life in new and innovative ways. Aligning with BIDN on this virtual showhouse and amplifying the incredible work the organization does to advocate for black designers is a necessary enterprise and one we hope to continue for many years to
come.”

Alison Harold, chief business development officer of BIDN added, “Partnership on a program of this magnitude is a significant step in the direction of allyship and driving change in the culture of our industry. It is our hope that we can deepen relationships with industry leaders like AD and continue to hear and see our voice at every level.”

The Iconic Home showhouse designers will be announced in October 2020 and The Iconic Showhouse will debut on archdigest.com in November 2020.

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