A Knack for Nesting
At home with Ivy Pierce
Ivy Pierce, owner and principal designer of boutique design firm Ivy Pierce Interiors, is masterful in her vision for home spaces that people dream of living in. With a keen eye for what not only looks beautiful, but fits her clients’ personalities and lifestyles, Pierce’s proficiency for good design and pleasing aesthetics is clearly shown in her projects. With a background education in interior design, first-hand experience with an icon in the design world, travel and many projects under her belt, Ivy Pierce brings talent and fortitude to every project.
Q: How did you get started in the interior design business?
A: I think I come by the inclination to decorate naturally. My whole family is full of wonderfully artistic homemakers; I’m just the first one to make a living out of this knack for nesting. My earliest professional design experience came when I was at (University of Oklahoma) getting my design degree, and the late, great Charles Faudree was commissioned to redecorate my sorority house. I introduced myself to him in the lunch line and before lunch was over, I’d lined up an internship. My formal education was primarily focused on commercial design, but Charles really taught me to love residential design – working with families and creating a true home for clients. After college, I spent several years as a design assistant at a local firm before deciding it was the right time to branch out on my own.
Q: If you could pick one time period to live in, in relation to design, lifestyle or architecture, what would it be?
A: Without a doubt, I’d have to say the Regency Era. I am a self-proclaimed Jane Austen super-fan and would love to transport myself to that time period. The fashion, the architecture and design – it’s all so inspiring.
Q: What designer, artist or icon has inspired you the most in relation to your work and why?
A: I have always admired Mary McDonald, Dorothy Draper and Sister Parish for their fabulous and fearless designs. I also am constantly inspired by many talented young designers like Mark Sikes, Amy Berry, Clary Bosbyshell Welsh and Cece Barfield Thompson. All old souls like myself whose work embodies classic design with a fresh, youthful twist.
Q: Is there a trend you are seeing in design right now that you are interested in?
A: I definitely relate to the new traditionalist or “Grandmillennial” movement. I love that antique brown furniture, skirted tables, pleated lampshades and floral chintz fabrics are popular again, but in my opinion, these classic design elements never went out of style to begin with.
Q: What is your favorite room to design and decorate?
A: I love to design living rooms, as they are truly the heart of the home; but I have a special place in my heart for nurseries. There is so much hope and positivity that surrounds the preparation for a new baby, and it’s a joy to be a part of that process. We welcomed our first baby in December, and I relished the chance to design my dream nursery for her. It’s full of antique and vintage finds, beautiful botanical prints and a treillage ceiling.
Q: What space in your home do you love and why?
A: My favorite space these days isn’t even inside. We just completed a full remodel of our backyard. We started construction two weeks before our daughter was born – yes, we are those crazy people! My husband, Mark, is a landscape designer, so we really had a blast getting to work together on this project. We took out all of our grass and installed a beautiful new paver patio and artificial turf, so our two German Shepherds can no longer track red mud into the house! Thankfully, the project was wrapped up in time for spring (and quarantine).
Realizing the answers are different for each client, what are your personal preferences when it comes to these design categories?
Q: Wallpaper or paint?
A: Wallpaper. Whether it’s a bold statement paper or a more subdued textural grass cloth, papers instantly transform a room. In my opinion, no powder bath is complete without a good paper.
Q: Neutrals or color?
A: Color. I find color psychology so fascinating, and truly believe the right mix of colors can have an incredible impact on our happiness at home. For me personally, that joy comes from vibrant blues, greens and pinks.
Q: Wall-to-wall carpet or rugs?
A: I absolutely prefer rugs, not only for their beauty, but for their practicality. I always suggest rugs for clients who live with pets and small children, because they can be cleaned easily onsite and removed for specialty cleaning if necessary. My favorite rugs in our home were brought back from a trip to India, and we adore them. I also frequently cut and bind broadloom carpet to create custom rugs for clients. I’ve done this in my own home, as well.