Designer Friday: An ASPIRE Exclusive Interview With Margaret Costello

Following the ethos of her design philosophy, Margaret Costello creates interiors that are centered around the wellness of her clients. From her own home to luxury apartments in New York City, Costello makes sure her designs are sustainable, functional, and timeless while also reflecting the people living in them. Her work has been featured in publications including Elle Decor and Rue Magazine and can be found in homes up and down the Eastern seaboard. Introducing this week’s Designer Friday, Margaret Costello.

Margaret makes sure to layer and incorporate a variety of different colors and textures into a space, which allows for individuality and depth.

Andrew Joseph: Describe your design style as if you were explaining it to someone who cannot see.
Margaret Costello: My spaces evoke a sense of serenity. You feel a sense of calm when you enter. They are lived in with fabulous art, furniture, and unique accessories—some vintage and some bespoke created by craftsmen. A variety of textures are layered, and every space is designed to be enjoyed—nothing in the space is too precious. If something has aged or if the marble has a scratch or a stain, the imperfections add to the beauty. My spaces also always reflect the person or family that lives in them.

Andrew: What is the last book you read?
Margaret: “The Murmur of Bees” by Sophia Segovia

Andrew: If you could live in any home in a movie or television series, what would it be?
Margaret: Villa Necchi Campiglio in Milan, Italy. The house in the film “I am Love” designed by Piero Portaluppi.

Andrew: What’s a guilty pleasure you have?
Margaret: Traveling….I can’t wait to get back on a plane and go on an adventure. I am a wanderlust!

Andrew: What’s the best thing that happened to you this month?
Margaret: I left NYC in mid-March and am in Florida quarantining in one of my dearest friend’s guest house. We have been friends for more than 25 years. It is nice being able to spend so much time together with her and her family and I’m so grateful. I am also currently working on a project here for clients.

Pictured above is a quick look into Margaret’s New York City apartment. She makes sure to integrate her love of travel and of course mix her style within the space.

Andrew: What’s your favorite cocktail?
Margaret: Moscow Mule in the summertime sitting on the dock in Northern Minnesota.

Andrew: What are three words to describe where you live?
Margaret: Contemporary, Serene, Curated.

Andrew: What was your first job?
Margaret: Working at an accessory Bath Store in Sioux Falls, SD.

Andrew: Are you a good cook? If so, what’s your specialty?
Margaret: Oh, I love to cook. One of my favorite things to do is go to The Union Square Green Market in NYC or Swank Farm when I am in Florida and get inspired by the fresh produce and then go back to my apartment and create a delicious meal. I have been cooking since I was young—at this point, I do not necessarily follow a recipe.

Andrew: Do you get your eight hours a night? – what is your schedule like?
Margaret: At least eight hours. I love to sleep and find sleep to be very important to staying healthy and young. That being said, I make sure I have a comfortable mattress and lovely linens to help me with my slumber.

Andrew: Who was the nicest person you worked for? Dare you want to share the worst?
Margaret: Nicest client: My first interior design project. They believed in me and we worked together for almost two years. I started when they bought a property that they were going to renovate but once the team saw what was going to be saved for the original house they decided to tear it down and build a new home. They have a fabulous art collection. He started collecting at age 17. They trusted me to work with them and their architect to create their dream space. To this day they are one of my biggest cheerleaders. Yes, I have had some challenging clients, but I have always learned greatly from them.

The deep tones of navy blue engulf this luxury New York City apartment’s den.

Andrew: How would you describe your personal style?
Margaret: Modern with classic undertones interwoven with influences from my travels.

Andrew: What would your dream project or dream client be right now?
Margaret: I have traveled a lot and studied every hotel I have ever stayed in. Ask my kids—I drive them crazy. It would be wonderful to design a boutique hotel in a remote location.

Andrew: What are you most proud of?
Margaret: My two kids. They are my greatest project and accomplishment and are still a work in progress.

Andrew: What are your beauty secrets?
Margaret: Sleep, yoga, meditation, eating healthy, laughing, pilates and most importantly being with my kids…they keep me young.

Andrew: Style (or design) icon?
Margaret: Axel Vervoodt, Piet Boon, Vincent Van Duysen, Commune Design, Studio K+O.

Photography by Carley Page Summers.

About The Designer | I want my interiors to cultivate a sense of wellbeing and harmony. Nothing excites me more than an opportunity to create a space that is beautiful but also functional.

In 2012, I established a full service design firm that specializes in turn key projects in West Palm Beach, Florida. Before working with interiors, I nurtured my love of design by working with fashion industry icons such as Tom Ford, Marc Jacobs, and Ralph Lauren.

My design philosophy centers around the wellness of my clients. I curate pieces both vintage and modern that embody this ethos. By favoring sustainable pieces made by craftsmen, I not only ensure that the client will have something unique, but timeless as well.

Last year I moved to New York City and now serve clientele in both markets. By living and working in New York, I have found new resources, showrooms, and artists that have further developed my work. Working in these two very different environments provides new challenges and opportunities.

Andrew Joseph is a regular contributing editor for ASPIRE DESIGN AND HOME magazine. See more of his work here.

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