Over the past two decades, Fulk has designed spaces for several major hospitality groups, that immediately court a celebrity clientele and can make any schmo walking in off the street feel like a rockstar too. He’s opened successful venues like Legacy Records, Carbone Las Vegas, Leo’s Oyster Bar and a cascade of other vivid dreamscapes. This list would be impressive for anyone, let alone a liberal arts grad with no formal experience at a design firm. He made pajamas, published his own children’s books, and nearly landed a TV deal before he found his way into design.
Fulk’s informal training informs his broad, holistic approach to projects, and it’s this comprehensive method that really distinguishes him and his team in the industry. “Not only do we do the decor, but we do the branding, the naming, really the whole concept,” he says, “whether it’s a house or a boat or a plane or a hotel” (or a Halloween party or a museum show opening or a bar). In the case of restaurants and bars, this expansive vision exceeds a physical space. Fulk adds, “With hospitality and bars and restaurants, they’re places where we come to commune, to be with other people and to share this experience. … It’s really experiences we create.”
To tackle this wide far-reaching concept, the design team begins with the story of a hypothetical customer. “We write a narrative because we’re storytellers,” Fulk explains. “We think about [venues] from soup to nuts. From the moment you get that glimmer in your eye that you might go to [somewhere like] Legacy Records, what do you think about? Suddenly it sounds kind of cool but what is it? Then you get there and it looks great. And then you get to see and smell and hear that great music.”