With several Grammys, a string of multi-platinum hits, and even an Oscar to his name, you wouldn’t expect a musical force like Lionel Richie to venture outside of the entertainment industry, but he has, and we’ve got the first look at his exciting new project. This week, the beloved singer turns the spotlight from the stage—he’s currently in the middle of his 2016 World Tour—to the dining table to announce The Lionel Richie Home Collection.
The new line, which officially launches Friday, includes an array of elegant pieces from bone china dinnerware, crystal barware, vases and frames, that lend themselves to effortless hosting. While this foray may seem surprising, it’s anything but for Richie, a self-proclaimed design enthusiast. “My passion for home decor and entertaining goes as far back as my childhood," he tells InStyle. "I was raised in a really dynamic and cultural environment in Tuskegee, Alabama, and traveling the world over the years has exposed me to so much. So when the opportunity presented itself to venture into tabletop it was really a no brainer and it felt like a natural fit.”
Richie even recently hosted a private dinner at his Beverly Hills mansion to showcase the new line to close friends and family. The guest list of course included his daughter Nicole, who was not only there to support her father, but happened to have played a very important role in the designing process. Find out what that was and more in the Q&A below.
What inspired the pieces and patterns we see in this collection?
They’re inspired by my travels and my Southern roots. I have also tried to incorporate elements of my home and hints of some of my favorite collectibles in the collection.
Can you share with us what the design process was like?
It was long, but an enjoyable and rewarding journey. I’ve noticed many similarities between songwriting and developing a home collection. I’ve been writing music for 40 plus years and have developed a keen ability to hear, see, and feel music. In a similar fashion, I’ve been able to see patterns in everyday life and translate them into physical designs. I’m a night owl and my most creative spurts of energy usually take place in the middle of the night. I once kept my designers and graphics team at my dinner table until 4:30 a.m., perfecting patterns for the dinnerware, fine tuning fragrances for the candles, and finding just the perfect shade of blue. We all had a great chuckle and sent everyone home with breakfast snack bags!
Speaking of breakfast, what’s usually on your plate?
Two glasses of warm lemon water to start the day followed by a rich bread and dairy-free meal: Scrambled eggs, sausage, vegetables, and oatmeal with raisins and walnuts.
Is there an ideal meal you envision being served on your dinnerware?
I am a fan of great “home cooking.”I love simple recipes that are healthy and tasty. Of course, if you put a meal in front of me that takes me back to my Southern roots, I will be a happy man! And even happier when the meal is presented on an elegant plate.
Your daughter is also a designer. Was Nicole a sounding board at all during the process?
Yes, her job is "chief opinionater." Getting her stamp of approval on the collection means a great deal to me.
Are there any other surprising projects we might see from you in the future?
This year, I plan to introduce LOFT by Lionel Richie Home, which draws on my love for color, creativity and fashion. Later in the year, LR Studio will debut, which will target the hospitality trade and other contract clients.