Shoptalk - Rebecca Rowland

Your design firm is known for imaginative, character-driven design of vintage homes; how do you approach this aesthetic?

For me, more powerful than any Pinterest board a client might give me is what I see and hear when I’m walking through a space, so I always start there. Every home is asking for something as particular as the client, and I consider it my job to make them both happy. I want to polish the house to be its best self, so that my clients can live their best life. Moreover, bringing back or creating character is a careful balance. I aspire to avoid time capsules in older homes or dissonance in new builds. Instead, I aim to create a sense of layered timelessness. No one should walk into one of my projects and easily discern the year it was completed.

When did you first become interested in design and what was the journey to eventually building your own firm?

I’ve been staring at walls and reworking rooms in my imagination for as long as I can remember. I just didn’t know that interior design was a profession that I could explore. The journey to my own firm was through visual merchandising and retail marketing – creating spaces that draw in the customer led me to create beautiful spaces in the home and soon I decided to make it my sole career. Working for corporations like Amazon gave me the skill set to be an entrepreneur. As much as I wish my job was just picking out pretty things, the level of detail and business operations involved requires a lot of discipline and process and other tasks that we take on, so our clients don’t have to worry about them. But the best part about being a growing firm is that I’m slowly getting to spend more time on design thanks to my talented team: Kimberly, Jocelyn and Emily.

What kind of reaction do you hope to get from people that live in your spaces?

That it’s more than they ever dreamed of but exactly what they wanted.

Your projects are infused with color and pattern; do you have an inspiration board, and can you tell us what is inspiring you now?

Nature is my go-to inspiration – where better to look for bold colors and textures working together harmoniously? My current inspiration is the dwellers of the National Aquarium – the variety of patterns under the sea is an incredible feast for the eyes. I’ve been studying and drawing them since my last visit and plan to incorporate my interpretations into future wallpaper and fabric designs.

Favorite design detail of your childhood home?

Built-in bookshelves – I’ve always been obsessed with beautiful library spaces.

Prized possession?

A vintage mid-century modern dresser that I inherited from my mother.

Favorite city to visit? London. I never tire of it. Before the pandemic, I’d go at least once a year.

Favorite era of design? Art Deco. The patterns and architecture - love.

What is your dream project?

A funky, fun vacation home that allows for tons of bold choices.

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