Industry leader and founder of Hinson & Co. Harry Hinson died in Manhattan on September 4, 2014, at age 76. He is survived by his longtime partner and spouse Tripp March.
Harry Hinson being honored in December 2013 for his support and contributions to the design community at the Decorators Club's benefit for the DC Education Fund.
Born in Rocky Mount, NC, Hinson moved to New York City in 1962 after graduating from the Richmond Professional Institute of the Colleges of William and Mary. He began his career at Bloomingdale's where he assisted interior designer Barbara Darcy. He later served as director of interior design for the high-end department store Bonwit Teller, where he designed branch stores in Westchester County, Long Island and major cities across the country. While still at Bonwit's, he and three others opened wallpaper and fabric company Quadrille.
In 1971, he formed Hinson & Co., a resource for fine hand-screened wallpapers and fabrics, woven fabrics, fine furniture and decorative accessories (through Mrs MacDougall), and lighting (through Hinson Lighting.)
He was a member of the board of trustees of the Kips Bay Boys and Girls Club and organized the Kips Bay Decorator Show House for 33 years. He also served as its chairman for many years.
"Harry Hinson was one of the last of an era when decorating was a less of a business and more of a way to enhance and create a lifestyle," said New York Design Center President Jim Druckman. "Harry was a leader in the world of design and at Kips Bay, of course, where he made sure that the Annual Showhouse was as near perfect as could be to raise as much money as possible for the boys and girls whose lives his efforts helped change year after year."
He was a member of the board of directors of the Decorative Fabrics Association (now known as Decorative Furnishings Association) and a member of the American Society of Interior Designers.
In January 2010, Hinson & Company was acquired by Thomas P. Peardon and T. Olivier Peardon, the owners of Brunschwig & Fils. In 2011, Brunschwig & Fils filed for bankruptcy and Donghia became the primary distributor of Hinson textiles and wallcoverings, lighting, as well as Mrs MacDougal accessories through its 12 U.S. showrooms. Donghia acquired the Hinson brand trademark and design library earlier in 2014.
"Harry Hinson was a visionary designer and a true gentleman," said Andrea Rubelli, President and CEO of Donghia. "I have always admired Hinson & Company, one of the great American brands of the past century. We were extremely proud to have distributed Hinson & Co. since 2011, and even more so to have acquired the Hinson brand and design library earlier this year. The company represents superb, timeless design, and Harry Hinson the man represents tremendous grace and integrity."
According to the obituary, there will be no burial or memorial service. His remains will be interred in the columbarium of the Chapel of The Resurrection at St. Thomas Church, Fifth Avenue, New York City. Memorial contributions may be made to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, 1275 York Avenue, New York, NY 10065.
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