AGE: 41. LIVES IN: La Grange. CLAIM TO FAME: TV and radio host and chief contributing editor of Inspired Home, created by the International Housewares Association. EARLY START: I was always creative as a kid. I could draw and paint. When I was 5 years old, I was doing these sketches of dragons and superheroes. From there, I started developing that creative eye. INSIDE STORY: I moved to LA and got into doing parties for celebrities. At one point, I was designing parties for Halle Berry and Dennis Quaid. A lot of times, while transforming home environments for clients, I would be asked to design other rooms in their home, which launched into home interior remodeling. Once you have that eye, you apply it to everything. PROJECT MANAGER: This year, I started my own collection of custom-made blinds and shades with Eddie Z’s. At the same time, I launched a radio show. But the IHA has been the biggest thing so far — they launched this new online destination where the consumers can get inspired by exciting products and get to know the manufacturers. FINE FURNISHINGS: Nadeau (4433 N. Ravenswood; Furniturewithasoul.com) has all imported, handmade pieces. When bargain shopping, I go to this place called Fort Pitt Furniture (4920 S. Central; Fortpittfurniture.com), a company that goes across the nation and buys old headboards, chairs and sofas from hotels. They’re top-quality pieces out of [places like] the Hilton and the Plaza Hotel in New York. HOLIDAY REVAMP: Take leftover décor from Christmas that you’re not using, like tulle or ribbon, and create big bows on the back of your [guests’] chairs. COLOR WHEEL: People are afraid of color, and I always tell them, “Don’t live in what I call ‘taupe-ia.’ ” Liven up the space, throw colors on an accent wall. We live in this world once — why not make it the most stylish life you can?
For more information on Fontana, visit Frankfontana.net.
My favorite shade of blue — because of my Italian background, it works well with my dark hair and skin.
Calvin Klein: merino V-neck sweater, $52.99, Macy’s, 111 N. State; Macys.com
It’s got a little bit of that regal British look to it, but still funky.
Similar styles available at Topman: selected homme grey blazer, $220, 830 N. Michigan; Us.topman.com
The material is brand new, pre-wrinkled [with] a little bit of distress. They’re slim-fit so they snuggle the leg.
Similar styles available at H&M: slim low jeans, $29.95, 840 N. Michigan; Hm.com
They’re comfy but they’re stylish. [They’ve got] a little bit of class with the leather fronts, but also whimsy.
Banana Republic: Jaxson Nubuck sneaker, $108, 744 N. Michigan; Bananarepublic.com