From modern apartments on the Upper East Side to traditional colonial interiors in Westchester County, Nancy Mayerfield does it all. The designer frequently jet sets around the country catering to an impressive array of residential and high-end commercial clients. Learn about her inspiration, her jam-packed schedule, and how she spends the perfect Sunday.
Designer Crush: Nancy Mayerfield
1. How do New York and Chicago differ in terms of design sensibility and style?
New York and Chicago are quite on par stylistically, it depends on the clientele and how daring they allow me to be with their design.
2. What is the key to organically integrating modern elements into classic design?
Generally, I start small. Sometimes it is as subtle as a crisper or cleaner color palette. Other times it is through small furniture pieces and accessories. If the client becomes more comfortable with the design, I begin to change the lines of furniture presented and varying types of more modern mixed media art.
3. If you could design the set for any movie or play, which one would it be and why?
It would be a movie set. A movie set allows the characters to truly live and use the space. The viewer can see, pause, and rewind to understand how the surrounding makes them feel and how they use each space. They may not rewind for that purpose, but they can take subtle cues. For example, a formal living room may take on a different role in a movie and show people that it shouldn’t be left for formal entertaining only…
4. You have three kids - what is a typical weekday schedule for you?
My schedule is tight. I have three kids with lots of activities. As soon as they get on the bus in the AM, I am off and running visiting job sites that are local to my house. Locations that are further from my house and shopping trips get specific days of the week, I try to limit the number of times I am running around the tri-state area in one day - sometimes that is unavoidable.
Monday AM I try to make a yoga class, it is important to get the week started right - centered and energized. If time permits, I take an 8:00 PM class during the middle of the week and then another Friday AM class to re-center.
Clock strikes 3:40 and I am home to meet the kids from school, we go to activities (baseball, lacrosse, swim, guitar, Hebrew tutoring, STEAM), they help me cook dinner - I love to cook and there is little better than creating a dish that my family loves, we do homework, I filter through, and although electronics are around, we communicate and hang out.
Dinner together at the table is a must every night - sometimes it's a late dinner, but it is our time to connect as a whole family. Meetings after school are sometimes a necessity, my kids are pros and know how to maneuver around an active job site or showroom. My husband is also so supportive and helpful in this endeavor and will hang/drive everyone if I am out. I work hard to schedule a non work date with a girlfriend during the week and weekly dates with my husband are mandatory.
5. Now throw that schedule out and imagine your absolute ideal Sunday. What does that look like?
In bed with my husband, newspaper, coffee, and my kids in bed too, watching an '80s movie.
6. What is your go-to source for inspiration when you’re feeling creatively blocked?
A robust magazine shop that sells European design and alternative design and art magazines. There is nothing better than seeing art.
7. Beach or mountains?
8. Pop or hip hop?
Depends on my mood. I have been known to show up at school pick up blasting the backspin station.
9. Netflix and chill or big night out?
Netflix and chill.
10. Cake or pie?
Neither — ice cream.
11. Big city or small town?
Small town, but must be near a big city.