Designers Line Up to Audition for Architectural Digest

(Photos: UnBeige)

New York’s Design & Decoration Building is always bustling, but as the annual D&D Building Market Event kicked off this morning with a panel discussion on “The Business of Design,” hundreds of interior designers and decorators waited in a line that snaked down Third Avenue and around the corner. They were there to participate in Architectural Digest‘s version of American Idol: the Open Auditions. Since the first nationwide Open Auditions in October 2007, the magazine’s editorial panel has reviewed the work of more than 1,000 decorating professional and non-professionals, and if our estimate of this morning’s crowd was accurate, that number came close to doubling today.

As the design hopefuls waited to be whisked inside (in groups of 20) to show photographs of their residential interior design projects to the judging panel, they chatted on cell phones, checked Blackberrys, perused the newspaper-style schedule of events, or simply clutched their binders and tried not to look anxious. Some had come from as far as India to show their stuff. And dreams do come true. Approximately 60 projects plucked from Open Auditions past (like this one by Chicago photographer Michael Marienthal) began appearing in last month’s issue of Architectural Digest and will continue to be published throughout the year. Meanwhile, start preparing for the next Open Audition, which will take place on March 25 at the Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles.