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Inside JB Studio, a New Design Showroom Featuring Sleek, Luxurious Furnishings

Decorative sunburst mirrors embellish a wall anchored by a vintage sofa. A chandelier, sconces, table lamps and accessories complement the setting.

Premier design showroom John Brooks Inc. introduces a new retail arm: JB Studio.

By Linda J. Barkman | Photography by Chris Loomis

HISTORY: Marvin John Wilkinson and Arthur Brooks Ellsworth, opened the first John Brooks Inc. showroom in Denver in 1993. “I was a young designer, and the showrooms were hard to deal with,”  Wilkinson recalls. So they started their own, which is and always has been open only to the trade.  

Why the name John Brooks? “It’s a pairing of our middle names, which sounded better than the Marvin Arthur showroom,” Wilkinson explains with a smile. “Even better, Art’s great-great grandfather’s name was John Brooks,” he adds. With that name, and Wilkinson’s degrees in interior design and architecture complemented by Ellsworth’s in logistic management and customer service, they were on their way. In 1999, they opened their Scottsdale showroom and filled it with items uniquely suited to the Arizona lifestyle. “We had been coming here for years and realized it was a great market for clients looking for high-quality products for their homes,” Wilkinson notes. Over the ensuing years, they continued to grow, adding manufacturers and increasing their showroom space along the way.

Owners Marvin Wilkinson and Arthur Ellsworth review art selections in Wilkinson’s studio.

Their current space, which they have occupied since 2008, is 36,000 square feet. “We kept true to our beginnings, pursuing manufacturers that were market leaders along with top-tier artists and craftsmen,” Wilkinson comments. “We don’t sell ‘stuff,’ he adds. “Our goal was always to pursue the artistry of design and the people who had a passion for it.” With business booming during the COVID-19 pandemic and the long wait times for product that ensued, the idea of sectioning off a dedicated area in their showroom to be used as retail space began to take form. The result is JB Studio.

Fast Facts

Owners: Marvin Wilkinson and Arthur Ellsworth

Opened: 2024

Location: 2712 N. 68th St., Scottsdale

Hours: Mon.-Fri. 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Phone: (480) 675-8828

Website: johnbrooksinc.com

“I wanted it to be its own brand,” she explains. “We were entering a new phase, bringing in a lot of new products, and I wanted to focus solely on my own business.” Then, along came COVID and her business expanded so quickly that they soon outgrew the space they were in. “I found this property in 2022. It had been vacant for some time. We remodeled it, which allowed me to bring our design offices and showroom together and to have a place to warehouse extra products as well.”

THE CONCEPT: At JB Studio, designers and the public can purchase product directly off the floor. “Designers frequently come in during install week needing a few more accessories, a piece of art or an accent chair for a particular spot, and they need it right away,” Wilkinson explains. “JB Studio is the answer to those needs.”

DIFFERENT STROKES: JB Studio offers a different sort of experience. “It allows the designer to put on the finishing touches promptly,” Wilkinson points out, “and brings the public an elevated experience and carefully curated products—many of which are one-of-a-kind—that they will not find elsewhere in the Valley.”

Showroom manager Justin Née adds that JB Studio was designed to have a different feeling and its own design vernacular. “It’s curated, while John Brooks Inc. has more of a boutique feel, with furniture displayed in vignettes that are organized by manufacturer,” he explains. “Because of its size and lower ceiling, JB Studio also has a more intimate feel.”

THE GOODS: An eclectic array of indoor and outdoor furniture, interesting lamps and lighting fixtures, a variety of rugs and eye-catching mirrors, art and accessories are deftly displayed in the 5,000-square-foot space, which includes an attached patio. “It’s quality furnishings at enticing prices, and the look ranges from transitional to contemporary to glam,” Wilkinson describes. Examples on any given day might include the likes of a round Donghia dining table; a black-and-white rug in a striking geometric pattern; a pair of velvet sofas; pieces with a modern aesthetic from Holly Hunt; and a variety of ceramics. The products and their makers change as items are sold and new inventory arrives.

Eye-catching accessories found in the showroom include everything from ceramics to this trio of items created by nature.
The wood chest in this eclectic vignette is a found item, while the bench is a combination of old and new elements. Also pictured are metal origami-style lamps and a foursome of framed branch prints from a photo series by Ricardo Mazal.

MISSION: “Our main goal is to make interiors look good,” Wilkinson reports. “We do that by bringing in the best products we can find and allowing the public to experience our design aesthetics and to have a great experience.”

TRENDS: Noting that a diverse client base breeds diversity in the items they offer, Wilkinson says color is currently making a comeback in the interior world and clients are responding positively to patterned fabrics showcasing everything from geometric to free-form designs.

INSPIRATION: “We’ve always loved shopping on our travels and bringing back things that are unique,” Wilkinson notes. “We pepper our showrooms with accessories, found items and art that become conversation pieces. We’ve always felt that art is a big part of interior design. We want to show how artworks can benefit a space. We’ve always embraced that. We love beautiful things, and we love the art of this industry.”

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