You regular readers know from time to time I like to interview and feature designers or stylists that inspire me greatly, and the latest addition to my list of favorites is Lauren Muse of Muse Interiors. I stumbled across her portfolio a few months ago and was so impressed with her spaces, I had to contact her and tell her so!
Lauren’s room designs have appeared in several publications from New England Home to HGTV, and I’m sure we will continue to see much more of her work inside shelter magazines for years to come. Lauren graciously agreed to answer some of my questions, so please enjoy our conversation and after seeing her designs, I’m sure you’ll be a huge fan too.
CG: Hi Lauren, tell us a little about yourself, your background, your education, and how long you’ve been a designer.
LM: I started Muse Interiors in 2000 after going to New York School of Interior Design. I grew up and now live in Greenwich with my husband and two children.
CG: Your spaces are all so sophisticated yet casual, classic and still modern, filled with tailored yet livable furnishings. What’s the design philosophy behind the look?
LM: The design philosophy behind the look is to maintain a transitional timeless style, rather than solely modern or traditional. This way the home stays current for years to come. Like you mentioned, there is a balance to our work. A mixture of clean lines and complex patterns with an elegant, yet livable atmosphere that is evident in the design.
CG: I spy creams, blues, grays, and sandy tones in several of your gorgeous spaces. Is this serene color palette at the client’s request or is it your influences that we see?
I’d like to think that each of my projects reflects the taste and style of both me and my clients. Together, we choose a palette and scheme to generate a final product, it’s definitely a collaborative process. With the way we all digest media today it’s so much easier for clients to share inspirational photos and ideas from sources such as Pinterest and Houzz. Although my influence and fingerprint is evident in each project, my clients’ point of view is always essential to the mix.
CG: I read that you believe in choosing both beauty and function in your designs and never one over the other. Explain what that means.
LM: My clients want their homes to be both aesthetically pleasing and functional. Many of my clients have younger children and so “choosing both” is especially important for these projects. I aim to create beautiful spaces that can be utilized and enjoyed in every day life.
CG: What do you believe to be the key to layering different patterns in rugs, furnishings, and fabrics successfully?
LM: That’s a tough one…it just kind of comes naturally. I don’t dissect it too much!
CG: Give us your best piece of advice for choosing finishes in home renovation, especially in kitchens and baths.
LM: I try to stay away from trends in kitchen and baths you want them to be timeless, clean lined. I always ask myself when I am designing a bath or kitchen would this work in the 1920s-30’s.
CG: Tell us really, how deep is your love for wallpaper and nail head trim?
LM: Wallpaper is great artwork. A lot of my clients have not amassed an art collection yet so wallpaper is a great cheat. You can create a dining room in a stunning vibrant paper and you don’t even realize there is no art on the walls. If you can’t tell from my website, I cannot get enough of nail heads on banquettes, chairs, tables, no ones safe…
CG: What are your favorite sources for fabric and trim, like the marvelous detail we see on the skirted sofas?
CG: For those decorating with limited funds, what’s one (or more) ways to achieve big impact on a tight budget?
Accessorize! New pillows, lamps, and mirrors can transform a space. There are so many amazing options for reasonably priced good design… Have you been to a West Elm lately? You could literally do a whole house. When had my first apartment there were not options like that out there.
Thank you Lauren for sharing your valuable insight today and inspiring us all with your amazing spaces! Perhaps you readers can see why I’m so drawn to her designs, they’re both elegant and comfortable and with great attention to detail. To see even more inspiring images, visit Lauren’s portfolio. All images courtesy of Muse Interiors.
What’s your favorite takeaway from Lauren’s spaces and/or sage advice?