Actor Terry Crews to present his furniture collection at Chicago trade show – Chicago Tribune
The plans NFL-player-turned-actor Terry Crews has made for his Chicago visit may surprise some of his fans. Sure, he’ll dine out — he said the city has the “best food in the world” — and spend time with his wife Rebecca’s family in Gary.
Also on tap: Presenting the new furniture collection he designed at NeoCon, the annual commercial interiors show that starts Monday at the Merchandise Mart.
“This will be my first NeoCon. I’m really, really honored to just be coming there with a collection,” Crews told the Tribune by phone. “I’ve heard so much about it. In fact, the president of Bernhardt (Design), Jerry Helling, told me that NeoCon is the big deal.”
Inspired by ancient Egyptian culture, the line for Bernhardt Design represents Crews’ return to his art roots. The “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” star attended Western Michigan University on an art scholarship, and had a career as an NFL journeyman.
After retiring from the NFL in 1997, he tackled other roles, including “Everybody Hates Chris” star, Old Spice pitchman, “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” host and People’s “Sexiest Man Alive” honorable mention.
A turn on “The Family Crews,” a BET network reality show, roused his design interest.
“I love the world and it came out of a desire to improve my own life,” said Crews, 48. “We did a reality show years ago and we were gifted with one of these makeovers, me and my wife, and it was horrible. It was absolutely atrocious. Actually, I will never again let someone make mistakes on my home just like that. I will make my own mistakes. And I set out after that. I was like immersed in the world of design.”
His time in Chicago this week may even influence his next collection.
“Any architect’s dream is actually to walk around downtown Chicago. It’s so big and so beautiful. It’s very, very inspiring and I really think I’m going to grab a couple new ideas while I’m there. It’s so not New York. It’s really weird, but it’s so different. It’s funny, when you go to theater in New York, I go to Broadway and the theaters are very old and kind of beat down, but when I go to theater in Chicago, those things are gleaming and they’re beautiful,” Crews said.
“It’s a big difference. Chicago knows how to live indoors with the weather, the whole thing. The indoor spaces have to be phenomenal because you’re going to spend so much time there.”