Susan LaFleur and Karrie Drinkhahn Master the Art of the One Liner

Art is how Karrie Drinkhahn and Susan LaFleur’s working collaboration and design passion have allowed them to be authentic to their vision

Amenity space in Atelier, Dallas, Texas Tom McConnell | www.mcconnellphoto.net

The creation of One Line Design Studio is the intersection of nearly 40 years of collective design experience by its cofounders, Susan LaFleur and Karrie Drinkhahn, and a shared passion for art, which is prominently featured in every one of the projects installed in One Line’s young tenure.

Susan and I met through a mutual fondness of art and its impact on design,” Drinkhahn remembers. “When we began conversations of building our own firm, we knew it was natural for it to be a focal point for our team. Art is how we began our friendship, and using that foundation has allowed us to be authentic to ourselves and our vision.”

Susan LaFleur and Karrie Drinkhahn, Cofounders, One Line Design Studio Barry Grossman Photography | www.grossmanphoto.com

In just a few short years, the talented team of “One Liners” has set the studio apart, not just with their reputation in the industry but also their forward-thinking idea of an office and diverse backgrounds, making them unique and poised for continued success.

“When we started the firm, our vision was always for us to be headquartered in Miami and Detroit,” LaFleur says. “As our team began to grow, we collectively decided finding the right talent to support our vision was paramount to our success, regardless of geographical location.” Today, One Line has a team of designers all around the country.

Both cofounders have experience working in global firms and seeing the impact that different locations provide for a team through diverse mindsets fostered in design and organic growth. The goal of the leaders is not to have the largest firm, but an empowered team of independent thinkers capable of providing unparalleled design, confidence, and service to all clients.

Lobby & Amenity Interior Design at Las Olas Walk, Residential, Fort Lauderdale, Florida Barry Grossman Photography | www.grossmanphoto.com

Drinkhahn and LaFleur share the belief that surrounding yourself with others whose skills and passion complement your mission and values allows your firm to thrive. “We want our clients to feel that they’re getting the best service, the most innovative design, and the strongest team for their project,” Drinkhahn says, “and as leaders, we will always keep our finger on the pulse of project details.”

“Our Miami office is the nucleus to our creative charrettes, but our unique team dynamics has provided us so many other advantages,” LaFleur says. “Our flexibility is our strength, and we are thrilled to be challenging the idea of the traditional ‘office.’”

With projects already installed in Miami, San Francisco, Fort Lauderdale, Dallas, and others in progress in Bethesda, Maryland, and Miami, One Line is executing its goals. “We’ve grown quickly in two-and-a-half years,” Drinkhahn says, “and as we continue to bring on more projects, we’ll always look to find One Liners that want to be part of this culture.”

The cofounders devotedly worked onsite for the recently installed luxury residences in the Dallas Art District, Atelier Apartments. “[We] were there for weeks installing, shopping at local antique stores, and carrying the project through from pen and paper to the final details,” LaFleur recalls. “Just like a one-line drawing, we intend to see each phase of the project through harmoniously, without missing a step.”

Lobby & Amenity Interior Design at Atelier Apartments, Dallas, Texas Tom McConnell | www.mcconnellphoto.net

What sets Atelier apart is the arrival experience on the first floor. To connect the building to the neighboring museum and arts counterparts, the first floor has an onsite curated art gallery for residents and locals. “In collaboration with industry partners, we were able to source some really unique pieces and curate the entire gallery,” LaFleur notes. “This is what our vision is about, and Atelier provided us the perfect stage to showcase it.”

Lobby space in Las Olas Walk, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida Barry Grossman Photography | www.grossmanphoto.com

Atelier is also the latest installation to benefit from One Line’s in-house artist, with custom commissioned murals on the gallery and amenity levels. “The first pointillism-inspired mural flows across the wall incorporating a series of canvases for depth to the piece,” Drinkhahn explains. “The second mural appears to emerge from a light fixture and creates an organic cascade down a feature wall, highlighting the perfect sync of design, architecture, and art.”

One Line will soon deliver an “Arts-Meets-Luxury” project to the heart of downtown Miami. The new construction build will feature a massive mural highlighting a multiheights staircase as well as more One Line–created art in the group fitness studio.

The dynamic duo feels very fortunate to do what they enjoy, surrounded by a team built of passionate creatives. “We aim to create spaces that people come back for. We want people to feel embraced by the interiors, the art, and every element around them,” LaFleur says. “We want our spaces to be where you imagined yourself traveling to, living in, and enjoying.”