Truth Bee Told Series: Interview with Marie Flanigan
One of our all-time favorite designers, Marie Flanigan, has kindly answered some of our burning questions - and we’re so excited to share with you! You MUST get to know her; check out her work and see our exclusive interview below!
Your portfolio is spectacular, and you have such a beautiful style. If you could describe your style in one sentence, what would it be?
That is so kind of you to say! I lean towards timeless styles that feel thoughtfully curated and richly layered. I love playing with texture, color, and light!
Knowing that you have a degree in Architecture, did you always have a knack for Interior Design, or was it something that you fell into while designing the overall structure of a space? What were your early career years like?
Early in my career, I transitioned to a firm that handled both interior design and architecture. Having the opportunity to work closely with families on the design of their interior spaces taught me how much I love the personal connection that evolves from that journey. I eventually went back to school and earned my MBA, before opening Marie Flanigan Interiors in 2010. I love that I’m able to apply my background in architecture to the work that I do every day – it’s a foundation of knowledge that has proven priceless!
What inspires you on each project? Is it different each time you begin a project, or do you find that you have a "go-to" source for inspiration?
The inspiration for every project remains consistent – it’s always the clients themselves! We spend a great deal of time getting to know each client on a personal level so that we can aptly bring light to their values, molding each space to fit their unique needs down to the most minute details. We strive to share their stories and most memorable journeys in a thoughtful, beautiful way.
What's your favorite part of each project? Is it the inspiration period, the construction phase, the final photography session, etc?
The majority of our projects last two or more years, and each phase is so exciting for different reasons. A definite highlight is the final installation and reveal because it’s the day when our clients get to see the many decisions they’ve made on paper transform into a living, breathing home. We request that they leave for a day or two while our team works furiously to place every last detail, from furniture and accessories to fresh florals. It’s an emotional day and the look on their faces when they see the finished product is an absolute joy!
Do you have a favorite designer or architect?
I am inspired by many industry legends, as well as so many of my talented contemporaries. Over the years, I’ve been strongly drawn to the work of architects like Bobby McAlpine and Jeffrey Dungan. Their work is timeless and immaculate, with an interesting sense of Old-World charm. I pray we have the opportunity to work together in the future!
Do you find yourself drawn to a favorite color scheme (we love your classic whites!)?
I often joke that my #1 design tip would be, “Paint it white!” Jokes aside, I do find that I’m generally drawn to a neutral color palette although pops of bold color definitely show up throughout my work. I love that white is a peaceful, healing color that allows richly layered textures to take center stage.
What has been your favorite project so far in your career and why?
That’s impossible to answer! They’re each so special in their own ways. I’ve discovered that every client brings a fresh perspective to the way we work, allowing us to explore new concepts and applications. It’s always a magical journey, but I’ll never forget my first full home installation! It was the start of something so much more than designing singular spaces, and it was an amazing feeling to see every detail come together. I immediately knew this was my calling!
Obviously, we know that you have a wonderful team within your firm! But when you're working on a project, what does your ideal team look like?
I am blessed to have the most incredible team! At the start of every new project, we assign a design lead. That person acts as the primary point of contact for our client throughout the process, to ensure they receive the exceptional service they deserve. I remain deeply involved throughout the journey, but my inbox fills quickly and I want to be sure every client is responded to promptly. The lead designer also coordinates meetings with various contractors, sub-contractors, artisans, and vendors. These efforts are in place to ensure a smooth, seamless progression through construction and design. On a related note, watching our designers take a project and run with it feeds my soul – they constantly amaze and inspire me!
Have questions that you’d like answered in future blog posts? Comment below with your questions and/or ideas. We’d be happy to answer them through our blog!