Ringing in the New Year with Mary McDonald

For those of you who don’t yet know who Mary McDonald is….get to know her…
She is hands down one of my favorite designers.  

(Photo from her website)

She’s stylish, chic and has an impeccable eye.  She has consistently been ranked one of House Beautiful’s “Top 100 Designers” and her installations have graced the pages of all of the national home and lifestyle magazines.  If I could pick one designer whose eye mirrors mine, it would be hers.
  I’ve recently purchased her book, Mary McDonald: Interiors (by who else but Rizzoli) and I highly recommend it.  The book is a visual treat and perfect for a coffee table or guest room. 

If you are a fan, as we are, there are many articles you can read to get an idea for Mary’s style.  A great one was written by Stephen Singerman at Veranda Magazine and gives the designers top 10 pointers for decorating and styling.

This is a photo from the article and it features a guest bedroom done by Mary where she put two big silhouettes of Chinese figures projected and then painted onto the walls.  It is this creativity that I enjoy so much.  

Mary uses Greek Key patterns in many of her room settings – if you like it, as we do, check out some of our fun pillows:

She suggests pairing bold patterns and weighting bold colors in both the wallpaper and on the bed.   We love the punchy orange and the monogrammed linens.
She suggests creating a cozy niche by building a window seat under a window or in a nook.  This one looks great and we love the black and white!

Mary’s theatrical Christmas tree in her Beverly Hills home two years ago featured peacock feathers collected on a trip to India.  Her Christmas colors that year included orange tones: orange trees andtangerine topiaries surrounded by gorgeous holiday greenery.  Read more of Victoria Amory’s article on Mary’s “Winter Warmth” in Veranda (photos by MIGUEL FLORES-VIANNA) .

Here are some more of my favorite McDonald images:

From House Beautiful (Mary McDonald’s Bold and Theatrical Design, photos by Tim Street-Porter)

I adore this silver pagoda lamp owned by Mary and used on the desk in her office.  She noted it as one of her favorite accessories.  She owns four of them and bought the first pair when she worked for the antiques dealer Joel Chen.  

A cheery pink sitting room Mary designed for a client, featured in House Beautiful.

Like the chinoiserie wall mirror? Check out ours, the Charters Mirror in Gold, just $625 plus shipping:

If you need some elegant blue and white porcelain, we have an easy solution – a 22-piece set, for $700:

Wonder what some of Mary’s favorite paint colors are?  When asked by Elle Decor what some of her go-to colors are, she said:

• Benjamin Moore HC-69 Whitall Brown—“It instantly creates a feeling of enveloping comfort,” says McDonald. “You can pair it with a pastel or neutral for a softer bedroom, or something bold like red for a library.”
• Benjamin Moore HC-166 Kendall Charcoal—“My go-to drama color,” she says. “Even with simple white upholstery it elevates the style quotient tenfold.”
• Benjamin Moore HC-156 Van Deusen Blue—“A mix between Swedish royalty and a yacht vibe” that appeals to men and women alike, she says.
Who better than to ring in the new year with on our blog than Mary McDonald.  Cheers and we look forward to highlighting many more fabulous designers and items for the home!  Your friends at The Well Appointed House.
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  1. Teresa at Splendid Sass

    Love her work! The first image and the kitchen dining area are my favorites, and I especially love the orange Leontine Linens’ bed.
    I love your pillows, the mirror, and the blue and white!
    Great post, Melissa.

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