Touring the home of A-list Colorado designer Andrea Monath Schumacher of O Interior Design.
Call it curiosity. Nosiness. Voyeurism. There’s something fabulously indulgent about peeking into interior designers’ own homes and seeing if their real-life spaces are as gorgeous as the ones they design. Andrea Monath Schumacher’s home in Bow Mar delivers. The 2,800-square-foot mid-century ranch is the quintessential representation of her work, which has garnered her accolades from magazines across the country and, in 2010, prompted House Beautiful to name her one of the “next wave” of American interior designers.
But you’d never guess it from her nonchalance as she wanders from room to room. The home is clean but interesting: classic with a side of surprise; sophisticated without being too serious. “I’m a mom. I like things that are comfortable, usable,” Schumacher shrugs. And exquisite: Her hand brushes the dining table, a replica of an antique Asian bed that she asked a local artisan to transform into a table. It’s flanked by two comfortable banquettes covered in Barbara Barry black cowhide embossed with giraffe print. An Arteriors chandelier hangs from the tongue-and-groove ceiling, its hand-blown glass stem surrounded by a polished nickel cylinder. Across the wide-open living space, built-in bookshelves are styled with casual
perfection, while Khaya Collection kudu-horn sconces topped with ostrich eggs glow nearby.
Schumacher fell into design after leaving Denver at the age of 19 for a program in fashion merchandising at Brooks College in California. A friend suggested she try an interior design class, and she enrolled on a whim. “I loved it, and I found I was pretty good at it,” she says. While she was there, Schumacher tried set design, interned at Days of Our Lives, and then got a job at Sony Pictures as part of the in-house design team. “I saw just how much talent pours into L.A.,” she says. “The sets were insane.” She returned to Colorado and earned an interior design degree at Colorado State University. A year and a half into a master’s degree in architecture at the University of Colorado Denver, she got a job designing interiors for a client in California, and O Interiors was born.
“I didn’t mean to have a business,” she smiles. “Clients just kept coming.” It’s no wonder. Schumacher knows the “rules” of design, but it’s her instinct—and willingness to break those rules—that adds beauty. “Interiors are just layers of texture—and life provides inspiration in texture all the time,” she says. “If you keep your eyes open, you learn a lot about texture and color.” Especially if you get the chance to peer into a home Schumacher designed.