Christin Engh, a Greenwich Mom and founder of Mare Design, is this week’s Meet a Mom! Christin has lived in Greenwich for 30 years, after moving from Norway in 1992 for her husband’s job, and raised her three daughters here in Riverside and Old Greenwich.
Christin and her talented team offer top-to-bottom project management, and pride themselves on creating a personal connection with every single client. “There is a lot of trust involved in having someone design your home and it is very important that there is a solid relationship between the homeowner and designer. I am proud that the vast majority of my clients come from referrals or are repeat clients, as that is the ultimate testament of great work,” says Christin. Here is more about Mare Design, Christin and her background, her favorite family-friendly design tips, her Greenwich favorites, and more!
Can you please tell us a bit about yourself as a designer?
Mare Design projects are best known for being serene and comfortable, yet luxurious. My approach to design is focused on how a room feels, not just how it looks. Cozy textures and luxurious textiles are integral to creating spaces that invite you in and help you to feel your best.
Love that philosophy – texture is so important. How do your Norwegian roots influence your projects? And your travels?
Travel is inspiring and brings fresh ideas and sophistication to my designs. My Norwegian roots are probably the reason why I care so much about layering luxe fabrics. Cozy homes are how Norwegians make the best of those long, cold winters!
What are some keys to a serene and inviting interior space?
Once again, texture and quality are my first consideration, as the feel of a textile truly has the power to elevate the every day.
How has being a mom impacted your work?
Being a mother has 100% impacted how I approach design. You think differently about how a home is lived in when you have had that responsibility of raising children and seeing how kids behave at home firsthand.
I work with a lot of young families and it’s so important to consider not just how a space looks and feels but how it is used. I want my clients to feel relaxed in their homes, even with young kids running around. I always ensure that accessories are child proof and fabrics can stand up to wear and tear of family life. I promise that you can have a phenomenal design that is also functional for real life.
Do you have any tips for beautiful yet family-friendly design?
Performance fabrics and rugs are incredible. In just the past five years the industry has made vast improvements in durability without sacrificing style. There are now excellent faux leathers that are completely wipeable and you can’t even tell they aren’t real leather. These are great to use for kitchens and banquettes. I am constantly educating myself on the newest introductions so that I am sure to always offer my clients the best of what’s on the market.
Beyond performance fabrics, it goes back to thinking about function and making choices that set you up for stress-free living. For example, there are so many chic accessories out there that are non-breakable, so why would you choose fragile décor for a young family if you don’t need to?
Sounds great! What are some design trends you’re loving for 2022?
Color is back in 2022! I still love elegant neutrals but it’s fun to mix it up sometimes. It is inspiring how bold color and pattern breathe life into a home. One of my favorite projects had pops of orange and blue that just made you smile. It was my first magazine cover story and it goes to show that color truly has a showstopping effect!
Can you please share how prospective clients can work with you, if they are local or further away?
Whether a project is here in Greenwich or across the country, the process is very similar. Even local projects are often new builds so I am designing a space that I can’t walk through. It is this innate ability to envision a space, without even seeing it, that is my superpower.
Who would you love to work with?
There is no one dream client. It comes down to the personal connection. Those clients that feel like dream clients are the ones that express what they are looking for in their home and trust my creativity and expertise to help them achieve and exceed their vision.
That said, I do love new builds and approaching design from the whole home concept. Combine that with a trusting and communicative client and that’s dreamy.
We love to support local businesses. Would you please share your favorite local places to:
Get dinner as a family – Le Penguin
Go out for date night – L’escale
Have fun as a family (outdoors or in!) – When there’s good art exhibition, we all love to visit the Bruce Museum.
Work out – Soul Cycle
Grab coffee – CFCF Coffee – I don’t drink coffee, but I love their Chai tea.
Photo Credits: Jane Beiles (Home); Andrea Carson (Headshot)
This story is sponsored by Mare Design.