An interview with interior designer Meta Coleman

Cozy Chic

Meta Coleman was an interior designer before she even knew it.  With a background in photography, it wasn’t until after she designed and built her own family home that she realized her design calling. Since then, she has committed herself to designing interiors as functional as they are beautiful, with the prime goal of a happy client. Her interiors are charming and homey—cozy yet chic—made up of eclectic and colorful combinations of vintage, contemporary, and antique pieces carefully chosen to reflect the characters, interests, and tastes of those who occupy them.

With a fast-approaching winter, there aren’t many places we could imagine being much happier than a cozy Coleman interior. Read on to learn more about Coleman and her personality-driven approach. 


India Herlem: What drew you to interior design? How did you find yourself in the industry? 

Meta Coleman: I have always been fascinated by the elements that make a home cozy, inviting, and personalized. Growing up, I spent my summers at my grandparents' home in Germany. It was a magical place for me as a child. The home seemed to take on a personality of its own. There were so many quirks and charms to the house. Looking back, I can see the elements that made my grandparents home feel like home to me are the same ones I incorporate into my designs today. The first time I was able to create a space that had personality was building my own home 14 years ago. That was the catalyst for me,  and I saw the potential of what I could create in a home. 

IH: What is your favorite part of your job? 

Interior designed by Meta Coleman Image courtesy of Meta Coleman
 MC: Each space I design is different and catered to my clients.  I love meeting new people and the challenge of interpreting who they are in their home. Mixing colors, textures, patterns, and shapes all to tell their unique story and make it a place they love to spend time in. I am actually an incredibly practical person when it comes to design. The space has to function above all else, but I also love beauty. So, the challenge is to make it function in a beautiful way.

IH: How much do your visions change over the course of a project? Are your interiors planned out to the last details or is interior design more of an organic process for you?

MC: I think it depends on the project and the people. Sometimes we stick pretty close to the vision board and others evolve as we go—and the more I get to know my clients, the more I incorporate into their spaces. Most often things do evolve, and I like to be open to the possibilities of the design process.

IH: You use a lot of vintage pieces in your interiors. How and where do you source your objects? 

MC: All over. There are several local shops I shop at as well as many online auction houses and sites like Pamono. I do love how well curated Pamono is; it takes some of the work out of it for me. 

Coleman and her family at home Image courtesy of Meta Coleman
: What is your approach to using vintage design objects in your interiors? 

MC: This is a tricky one to answer because I don’t know if I really have an approach. I generally love to use vintage lighting in most of my designs. Lighting is such an important finishing touch in any home and worth the splurge, in my opinion. Vintage lighting has a past story, a uniqueness and a soul that I love. 

IH: Who are your top three furniture or lighting designers of all time? 

MC: This is hard because there are so many! But if I have to choose, I say first, Axel Einar Hjorth: I love how his pieces feel modern, rustic, and like a piece of folk art all at the same time. Second, I love the work of Rudolf Steiner; his work is so unique and speaks for itself. Finally, Bjorn Wiinblaad: I know he isn’t a furniture or lighting designer, but I love to add an element of whimsy, and Bjorn Wiinblaad’s ceramics pieces are so fun and playful. 

IH: Where do you draw creative inspiration from? 

MC: Vintage books, new books, magazines, a color-combination in nature, a color-combination in a piece of clothing or fabric swatch, my clients—everywhere I can. I try to keep an open mind. 

IH: How do you make an interior personal and tailored to your clients? 

MC: After I have met with a client, I then email them a questionnaire about their interests, likes/dislikes, background, etc. This is a way for me to dive into who they are and what motivates them. Oftentimes my clients will tell me that I picked the exact pattern or color they loved and that feels like them, which is the best reward for me. I want my designs to be something my clients will still love years down the road; full of pieces that are classic and timeless and that they feel comfortable with. 

Thank you, Meta!


Are you an interior designer or architect? If so, we invite you to join Meta Coleman and thousands of other talented creatives by signing up for Pamono’s Trade Club. Members enjoy a suite of special services—from trade discounts to object sourcing and dedicated project support—from Pamono’s expert team. 

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