Designer Friday: Michelle Workman

Sure, we all fantasize about what the interiors of Jennifer Lopez’s villa looks like, or how John Travolta’s estate is laid out. What kind of beds do Oscar-winners sleep in? Michelle Workman knows, and that’s because she designed them. Referred to in the industry as “interior designer to the stars,” the Tennessee-based designer couldn’t be farther from Hollywood. But that doesn’t stop her from bringing her taste for whimsy, welcoming colors and expressive textures to the homes of the rich and famous. This week, she lets us know that although she may design for the stars, she’s just as obsessed with The Walking Dead as you are; plus some book suggestions and a peek into her wardrobe. Only the best- Michelle carefully chooses textiles to put to use in a current project. When it comes to vintage or new, Workman doesn’t choose. Instead, she artfully complements modern statement pieces, like this textured rose couch, with antique secretary desk and table ornaments.


Andrew Joseph – What’s your go-to bed ritual?
Michelle Workman – After I put my child to bed at about 8:15, I get my PJ’s on and climb into my bed – and for the next 3 hours, I do some variation of the following; shop on the internet, watch TV, plan trips with the hubs, read a History book or Sci-Fi novel.

Andrew – Vintage or new?
Michelle – BOTH!

Andrew – What’s one ingredient you put in everything?
Michelle – French Tarragon, it mellows everything with a slight licorice fragrance.

Andrew – What’s your current TV obsession?
Michelle – I really hate to admit this, but… The Walking Dead.

Andrew – Secret talent?
Michelle – I can read a person’s style and personality in about 5.3 seconds – this is an overall read, not a detailed read, but I could design a home for someone based on that, and 99.9% of the time it is spot-on.

Andrew – How would you define your work in three words?
Michelle – Exuberant, Eclectic, and always Elegant.

Andrew – Favorite piece of clothing you own?
Michelle – Hmmm… there are so many – I have a pretty extensive collection of vintage clothing that I have been putting together since I was 16 years old; Currently, I have several favorites, not least of which is a Bill Blass brocade gown from the 1970s.

Andrew – Must have clothing item everyone should have?
Michelle – A velvet jacket, or 3…

Andrew – Best advice you’d give your teenage self?
Michelle – Don’t worry, you are not headed for failure – you are bigger, stronger, and have more ability than you realize; all your dreams will come true and you will even have time to make new ones, which will also come true.

Andrew – A book that everyone should read?
Michelle – Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand – I am a voracious reader, and it was the one book my husband (then a newly minted boyfriend) had read that I hadn’t – have since read it multiple times.

Andrew – What would you like to be remembered for?
Michelle – For creating beauty in this world.

Andrew – How do you define beauty?
Michelle – It is intrinsically indefinable, isn’t it? It is a quality that evokes a feeling – and for me, that feeling is wonder and/or joy. At this dining table, everyone’s in the hot seat- the hot pink seat, that is. Traditional but not stuffy, this orange-accented dining room from Workman is an example of her ability to balance the elegant with the chic.


About Michelle Workman | Michelle Workman is one of America’s most sought-after interior designers, with high-end residential and commercial projects spanning from West Coast to East Coast. 
Touted as “Showbiz Royalty” by Variety magazine, Michelle possesses an esteemed and influential client roster, from the Hollywood elite (Jennifer Lopez, John Travolta, and Topher Grace, to name a few) and Silicon Valley executives, to Manhattan philanthropists; anyone who desires elegant and glamorous trend-setting design.

Michelle has more recently added product licensing to her professional services and business mix. Her designs for various product categories are reflective of her style that she describes as “exuberant elegance.” She believes in adding a bit of whimsy, and has collaborated with French Heritage and Pyar and Co. Currently, Michelle is developing a wallpaper collection set to launch in March 2019. She is also working on designs for upholstery, lighting, and decorative furnishings.


About Andrew Joseph | Andrew Joseph’s passion for design and rich journalistic history led to the launch of his boutique PR firm in 2012. Prior to enjoying the successes of Andrew Joseph PR, Andrew honed his editorial skills at Vanity Fair and Allure. This experience, as well as the strong network of contacts developed over the years in public relations, brings a valuable edge to his role as contributing editor. Let the musing begin.

Like what you see? Get it first with a subscription to ASPIRE DESIGN AND HOME magazine.

Facebook Comments
No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

ASPIRE DESIGN AND HOME is seeker and storyteller of the sublime in living. It is a global guide to in-depth and varied views of beauty and shelter that stirs imagination; that delights and inspires homeowners as well as art and design doyens. Collaborating with emergent and eminent architects, artisans, designers, developers and tastemakers, ASPIRE creates captivating content that savors the subjects and transports with stunning imagery and clever, thought-provoking writing. Through lush and unique visuals and a fresh editorial lens, ASPIRE explores what is new and undiscovered in art, interiors, design, culture, real estate, travel and more. ASPIRE DESIGN AND HOME is an international narrative and resource for all seeking the sublime.