If you’ve found yourself in awe of designer and artist Justina Blakeney’s lush interior designs while perusing her beloved Jungalow blog, visiting the brand’s shop, or checking out her books, like the recent release Jungalow: Decorate Wild, you’re not alone. Jungalow’s unique boho style, bringing color, patterns, textures and appreciation of nature into the home, has garnered quite the fan base. If you’re a part of it, the inner bohemian in you will delight at the fact that Blakeney is collaborating with Target’s eclectic Opalhouse brand to bring her vision and appreciation for wildly imaginative design to the masses that shop at the retail chain.
The Opalhouse™ designed with Jungalow™ collection, a multi-year partnership with Blakeney at Target, provides pieces for every room, including bedding, decor, furniture, wallpaper and the bathroom. The majority of items fall under $30 and can now be previewed on Target.com. The line will then become available at select Target stores on June 13 before fully rolling out on the site for purchase on June 26. It’s a partnership everyone involved is excited about, including Target’s senior vice president of merchandising, home, Samara Tuchband.
“Target is known for one-of-a-kind partnerships that deliver incredible design at an amazing value, and this new collection with the inspiring and talented Justina Blakeney will fill our guests’ homes with a whole lot of joy,” she tells ESSENCE. “As a multi-year partnership, we look forward to continuing to create beautiful products with Justina that inspire all guests with affordable and accessible design.”
To help announce the news, we spoke with Blakeney about how the desire for wanderlust during the pandemic inspired the Opalhouse™ designed with Jungalow™ offerings, the best way to bring life and some color into our spaces after a rough year and the importance of creating an ambiance at home, “good vibes” as they say, that allows for dreams and joy to flourish.
ESSENCE: What was the inspiration behind the pieces you put together for this collaboration with Opalhouse?
Justina Blakeney: We began designing this collection in August of last year. After many months of staying at home, I was dreaming of far-away places, and of getting outside into nature, so this collection incorporates inspiration from some of my favorite regions of the world, like India, Mexico, Morocco and Italy and lots of botanical motifs and natural materials. I also spent a lot of time thinking about how we can make our homes more beautiful and functional, especially for folks living in small spaces, so you’ll find lots of convertible and multi-functional pieces in this collection. For example, the stackable velvet ottomans unstack to create multiple floor cushions and the rattan hanging shelf is great for an entryway but could also be used above a desk or vanity, or in a bathroom. My hope is that this collection will help to encourage all people to bring good vibes home.
I’m sure they’re all your babies, but do you have any specific favorites from the collection?
You’re so right! Every single piece in the collection is so special to me. I will say though that it’s especially fun and gratifying to see my paintings featured in this collection. I am also in a phase of being obsessed with all things scalloped — so the quilts with scalloped edges are already a staple in my bedroom. I also have to shout out the little brass hand catchall dish. It’s one of those pieces I’ve been dreaming of for years and the design team at Target helped me to bring it to life in such a beautiful way.
I appreciate the fun use of textures and frills in the collection, particularly with the pillows and overall bedding. What do you love about these decorative embellishments (tassels, etc.)?
I’m such a fan of trims. Pompoms, tassels, fringe, oh my! Being a “more is more” type of person I just can’t get enough of fun embellishments. It’s a great way to add whimsy and personality to a bed or a sofa and add texture to help spaces feel more layered.
I think people have been trying to spruce up their spaces throughout the last year and even now to bring some character and life into the four walls they’ve been staring at for so long. How would you recommend incorporating that into dull spaces? Is that through plants? Pops of color?
When I think about adding character to a dull space, for me it’s about balancing color, pattern and yes, plants(!!), and bringing in pieces with personality that light you up and make you feel something. When it comes to decorating walls, I love a fun hanging planter (we have a couple of really pretty ones in the collection). I also like to create dynamic gallery walls that mix framed artworks and photographs with wall hangings, wall baskets and even a wall lamp. The diversity of shapes, materials and colors help to create a look that feels collected and adds so much interest to a space.
What would you say is your mission when it comes to the way you see interior design? What do you seek to bring to spaces with your bohemian style?
When I design a space, it’s about supporting the day-to-day activities that go on in a home, but it is also about creating spaces that help to support growth and dreams. I like to think about how a room can nurture creativity, play, imagination – even romance! Creating an ambiance can be a very powerful tool in designing not just a beautiful home, but a beautiful life.
One great thing about these collaborations with Target is they make the work of very sought-after talents, like yourself, accessible to and affordable for everyone. What does that mean to you?
I believe deeply that good design can increase the quality of life and that good design is something that everyone should have access to. It’s truly a privilege to play a small part in working with Target to bring eclectic design to the masses at such incredible price points.
Check out images of some our favorite pieces from the collection below all courtesy of Target.