“I like helping people get to that honest, true home that is both a beautiful and comfortable place to live,” says Melanie Pounds of Melanie Pounds Interior Design and her Mountain Brook showroom, Patina. Melanie is inspired by nature, and you can feel that grounded, salt-of-the-earth undercurrent in her artfully layered spaces. Glamorous touches are subtle as she lets aged wood, stone pieces, antiques, old cherished items and art take center stage. The spaces feel at once old and new, thoughtful yet unplanned … but always personal. We are delighted to introduce our latest interior designer crush, Melanie Pounds.
Tell us a bit about your background and experience in design.
I have always loved gathering with close friends and family. Creating a space to complement and enhance those experiences is gratifying. It makes you feel like you are giving something you can do back. I have always loved creating that.
What is your design aesthetic, and how do you translate that to a client’s home?
Hopefully, it is edited, inspiring and complementary to its owner and surroundings.
Are there any trends you’re loving at the moment, and, alternately, any timeless aspects of design that you cling to?
Right now, I am really enjoying playing with the use of color and metallics in a subtle way.
What has been your most challenging project to date and why? How did it help you grow as a designer?
My most challenging jobs are ones that don’t come with clarification or transparency. This has trained our team to guide clients through the best experience and what they are really looking for to make a perfect match.
What brings you the most professional joy?
When an installation is a success by all. Nothing is better than when a client sees what has been planned and designed for a very long time, come to life and be beyond their dreams!
What is your favorite room in your home and why?
I really love every room we live in. The key for me is good light or a really cozy space, a room that feeds a function or mood. Our foyer is partially open to the outdoors and then there are doors that can retract to be completely open to the dining room. This is a wonderful place to watch the rain come in, watch the children or have a cup of coffee and get the day started. It also functions as a wonderful serving space or bar and as a dining room extension if needed. The master bedroom is framed in drapery, which feels like a cozy oasis to watch a movie on a rainy day. These are a few of my favorites!
Where do you get your inspiration?
I get inspiration originally from nature. There are so many natural colors and textures that are all around us in everything. People’s ability to create art is also inspiring, and innovative ways to use that art also challenge us all to think about ways to use materials in a new way.
Where do you take chances in design?
I take chances with scale and furniture layouts and floor plans. It is fun to consider how your client uses a space and make it work for them, instead of a traditional and assumed design.
Who have been your industry mentors and role models, and how have they inspired you?
There are so many, I don’t know where to start. I would say John Saladino. His designs are very innovative, edited and beautiful at the same time.
If you could choose one designer to redo your home right now, who would it be?
What’s your top designer secret?
Look and listen to what the landscape asks for and not a trend that we want to make it.
What three home decor items can you not live without?
Candles, marble and wood
If you could squeeze your design philosophy into five words, what would they be?
Unconventional, functional, inspiring, complementary, soothing
A special thanks to Melanie for the interview! Thank you to Jean Allsopp of Jean Allsopp Photography for the gorgeous images of Melanie’s work.
See more work from our favorite interior designers! Click here!