Interior designers excel at making choices for other people because they have an almost encyclopedic knowledge of product and material. It’s only when designing for themselves do designers seem to battle a sort of paralyzing indecision. Such was the case for interior and textile designer Marika Meyer: “It has always been tricky for me to capture what I really want at any given moment,” she says. Her personal style has always been somewhat mercurial. If she’s working on a project for an eclectic client, then she might favor a bit of eclecticism that week. If her client wants classic blue and white, the same goes for her taste. That ability to live and breathe a clients style is what makes her a good designer. But, it’s also what made this project, her own home, a little bit tricker.
“I don’t like spaces that feel overly designed,” says Meyer. Her home exudes that sort of lived-in comfort where nothing is too precious, but everything is perfect. In the kitchen, she chose a patterned antique rug to hide potential cooking meltdowns. The vintage secretary in the dining room doubles as her desk and a place to put cocktails during dinner parties. Every room strings together the narrative of style and self that she is trying to tell. In many rooms you might find an elephant, her favorite animal and something she collects. You’ll also find pieces made from her textile line, a labor of love that has taken center stage in her life and business in the last few years. “The house tells a story of me throughout time,” she says.
The narrative follows the plot of a designer-turned-mother. “My life is loud,” she says. “I work all the time. I have an interiors business; I have a textiles business; I have two wonderful little munchkins. It’s a lot of intake.” Meyer wanted to mix her collected style with the function needed for pieces being used by a growing family. She found herself walking that familiar line of creating a space that felt inspiring but would hold up to the daily wear and tear of life. She used performance fabric where she needed it, but her style came alive through her love of antiques and use of pattern.
Nowhere is that dynamic clearer than in the family room. Away from the formal entertaining space, this room is just for the Meyers. “The design is a real departure for me,” the designer says. She went bold with the color, making the room feel more like Harbour Island than Maryland. She layered pattern through the space with a mix of fabrics from her collection and others. “Textiles are such a great form of self-expression and they bring me so much joy,” says Meyer. The first thing that went into the room wasn’t textiles, though. It was a lesser-known Slim Aarons photograph. When they renovated the space, she knew she wasn’t going to make any exterior changes, which meant the family room would have no windows. Her genius solve? Place a large Slim Aarons photograph center stage and draw the eye up and away to sunnier skies. “It makes me smile every time I see it.”
If decorating your own home is a series of mental gymnastics to honing your style, then give Marika Meyer the gold medal. Each room is a testament to her changing style. Together, they build a visual lexicon that is wholly of Meyer’s creation. And while she still doesn’t have the exact words to describe the finished product, her guiding principal rings true: “I figured if there was ever a time to have fun and really express myself as a designer, now was that moment.”
“My husband and Ii love to entertain. We use every space in our house,” says Meyer. “As such, I wanted the living room to be approachable.” The overstuffed sofa mixed with a barrage of patterns makes this space feel layered. Antique pieces and an elephant side table show Meyer’s personality. Sofa: Perennials; perennials.com. Paint: Benjamin Moore, Manchester Tan; benjaminmoore.com. Green Chairs: Vintage, Cowtan & Tout Velvet; cowtanandtout.com. Small Wooden Chair: Antique, designer’s own. Drapery: Marika Meyer Textiles, “Lilian”; marikameyertextiles.com. Coffee Table: Vintage. Elephant Side Table: Vintage. Lamps: Vintage Pillows: Various Kravet Couture; kravet.com. Rug: Antique, Matt Cameron Rugs; mattcamron.com.
Meyer bucked the original 1949 floor plan by turning the study into her dining room. “You don’t have perfect symmetry but it works,” says Meyer. Pattern takes center stage here as the Farrow & Ball wallpaper serves as the perfect foil to the drapery in the adjacent living room. Silvers and soft tones provide the background to long candlelit dinners with friends. Dining Table: Vintage, designer’s own. Dining Chairs: Vintage, designer’s own. Hurricanes: Simon Pearce; simonpierce.com. Cabbageware: Vintage, designer’s own. Chandelier: Circa Lighting; circalighting.com. Hutch: Vintage, designer’s own. Drapery: Schumacher; fschumacher.com. Wallcovering: Farrow & Ball, farrowandball.com. Rug: Stark; starkcarpet.com.
Towering bookcase painted black and a dramatic Visual Comfort light fixture give this passthrough room the illusion of jewel-box intimacy. Built-in Paint Color: Fine Paints of Europe, Black; finepaintsofeurope.com. Wall Paint Color: Benjamin Moore, Manchester Tan; benjaminmoore.com. Light: Visual Comfort; visualcomfortlighting.com Table: Vintage, designer’s own. Chairs: Vintage, covered in Sigourney Small Scale from China Seas; quadrille.com.
“I wanted a killer runner in the kitchen,” says Meyer. “My husband is the chef in the family and his only requirement was that it hide the sins of the chef,” she says with a laugh. Her hunt led her to a wildly patterned runner that she says serves as the amuse-bouche to the rest of the kitchen’s color. Runner: Vintage. Table: All Modern, allmodern.com. Chairs: Serena & Lily; serenaandlily.com.
“The Slim Aarons photograph was the first piece in this room,” says Meyer. With no window, she wanted to draw the eye up and out. Everything, including the bright color palette, followed suit. Art: Slim Aarons, “Leonard Dalsemar;” chairish.com. Side Chair: Vintage, covered in Marika Meyer Textiles “Finn;” marikameyer.com. Sofa: Lee Industries, covered in Thibaut; thibautdesigns.com. Coffee Table: Ballard Designs; ballarddesigns.com. Side Table: Vintage. Pillows: Various Marika Meyer Textiles; marikameyer.com Built-ins Paint Color: Benjamin Moore, “Iceberg;” benjaminmoore.com. Lamps: Vintage.
“I’m looking at pattern all day, so this is the chance for me to relax,” says Meyer of her bedroom design. “It’s a quiet space.” Paint Color: Benjamin Moore, “Pale Oak;” benjaminmoore.com. Headboard: Custom, covered in Fabricut; fabricut.com. Bedding: Matouk; matouk.com. Pillows: Marika Meyer Textiles, “Roman Fig;” marikameyertextiles.com. Bedside Table Lamp Shade: Bunny Williams Home; bunnywilliamshome.com.
“I knew I wanted to do something with animals that was really expressive,” says Meyer of her son’s room. The first wallpaper she showed, a classic Tibetan Tiger pattern, was a miss. “He burst into tears, he was so scared.” She settled on a more bright, and child-friendly paper from Scion and stuffed animal mounts from Anthropolgie to pull the room together. Wallpaper: Scion, “Animal Magic” in Tutti Frutti; perigold.com. Rug: Erin Gates, “Beacon Outdoor Rug” in orange; onekingslane.com. Curtains: Lucy Rose; lucyrosedesigns.com. Desk Lamp: Home Goods Stuffed Animal Mounts: Anthropologie; anthropologie.com.
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