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Event Designer Bill Heffernan Shares His Favorite Things

Photos: Anna Knott

As a broke student at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1979, Bill Heffernan started handing out flowers on Michigan Avenue to promote his fledgling flower delivery service. That business eventually blossomed into HMR Designs, an event design company. Today, Heffernan, 58, orchestrates swank soirees such as the opening of Millennium Park and the unveiling of Soldier Field’s recent renovation. He continues to innovate, lately incorporating video into his productions. “I want to transform the environment and create the space as art,” says the Connecticut native, who also constructs artful spaces at the Georgian-style home in Old Irving Park that he shares with his cocker spaniel, Charlie. Here are some of his favorite things.

Restoration hardware table lamp

Restoration hardware table lamp

($579, 938 W. North Ave.)
“Classic, with an elegant nickel finish.”

 

AG jeans

AG jeans

($178, Nordstrom, 55 E. Grand Ave.)
“I feel more energetic wearing these than regularly colored pants.”

 

Kiehl’s facial moisturizer

Kiehl’s facial moisturizer

($27, 907 W. Armitage Ave.)
“Feels great going on.”

 

Burberry shirt

Burberry shirt

($285, 633 N. Michigan Ave.)
“Beautifully cut and proportioned.”

 

Antique ceramic vase

Antique ceramic vase

“Charming and versatile. I use it as a flower vessel.”

 

Le Creuset dutch oven

Le Creuset dutch oven

($300, 47 E. Ohio St.)
“The very top end of cooking utensils.”
Photo: Courtesy of Le Creuset

 

Antique English coach lamps

Antique English coach lamps

“Meant to be outdoors, but they create surprising scale indoors.”

 

Restoration hardware cashmere robe

Restoration hardware cashmere robe

($389)
“The most comfortable piece of clothing I’ve ever owned.”

 

Karl Blossfeldt photo

Karl Blossfeldt photo

“I have 40 of his photos and like to arrange them in different ways.”

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