Magdalena Keck‘s interior design work spans retail, commercial and residential spaces and also moves up and down the east coast from Miami to New York. The homes she works on for her clients inevitably include a home office. Here the designer talks about a signature style and what inspires her.
You’ve been working as an interior designer for over a decade now and we see your work published widely. Do you have a signature look that typifies what you are trying to achieve with your residential work? I strive to create more space and light then the spaces have in actuality. I like a good functional use of space and an easy flow with one or two interesting pieces. No fuss really, but elegant simplicity and comfort. I love a really light or a really dark palette, you will not see much of in between in my projects. I am drawn to colors that are hard to define: blue grays, brown grays, black browns, brown aubergine etc.
Looking through the homes you’ve worked on I see a common thread of clean-lined simplicity and restrained color schemes. There’s a real serenity to your work. Is that a conscious choice on your part? I think it is subconscious, but I do believe we have enough stimulation in the “outside world”.
Tell us about some of the favorite home workspaces you’ve created. Do you find people ask for similar things in a home office? People want home work space to be integrated well into the home instead of being some forgotten isolated corner.The home office of Upper East Side Residence is one of my favorites (pictured below). I love the huge window one can look out from at NYC from 34th floor. It’s dark: a combination of browns, grays and aubergine, which I think it makes it sophisticated and warm at the same time.
How do you strike a balance between work and home life? Do you find yourself designing at your kitchen table or are your work hours clearly defined and contained to an office space? I like what I do, so I have no problem working at home when inspiration strikes. I do quite a lot of research in the evening if nothing else is going on. I think as a designer one never really stops working, the wheels are always turning.
What inspires you in your design? Many different things: it sounds like a cliché, but one of them is Nature. She has it all figured out: the light, the darkness, the textures and colors. I am drawn to “found objects” in nature as well as made man. Art history and European renaissance and baroque architecture are beginning to play a significant role as well.