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Photograph by Dana McGarth

Meet the Designer: Boland Lord Design

The principals of this new Denver firm reveal the things they love—and loathe—about Mile High City interiors.

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It’s not easy to find your decorating soul mate, but interior designers Nancy Boland and Martha (Marty) Lord have done it—and the result is their brick-and-mortar residential decorating firm Boland Lord Design, opened in Washington Park in March. “We have the same vision,” says Lord, who met Boland (previously of Duet Design Group) while working at Ekman Design Studio. Often, that vision is a mix of antique and new furnishings—a timeless mélange that can be missing in mid-century-modern-hungry Denver. “We appreciate the modern look, but we love this mix; we’re helping to fill that niche here,” Boland adds. Here, the duo shares a smidgen of their design ethos in five answers.

5280 Home: Give us one design rule.
Nancy Boland: Every house needs a pedestal table. I love them! They’re great for displaying busts, plants…. We just bought one for our office.

Photograph by Emily Minton Redfield

What are your top decorating tips?
NB: Furniture and fabrics should be investments, not impulse purchases. When selecting seating, prioritize function and comfort, then aesthetics. And for flowers, it’s fresh (not faux) or nothing.

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What’s challenging about designing homes in Denver right now?
Marty Lord: Our lifestyle is so outdoors-driven that sometimes homes aren’t necessarily a focus for people.
NB: Also, because the prices of everything are so high here, including homes themselves— boy, those costs eat into budgets! Lead times have increased and so has sticker-shock.

Photograph by Emily Minton Redfield

Spill it: Where do you go in Denver for design inspiration?
ML: The antiques stores on South Broadway, like [design collective] SoBo Interiors, Scandinavian Antiques, Black Tulip Antiques, and Watson & Co. There’s a new space in SoBo with a pair of Asian barrel chairs with woven cane seats that we’re coveting, and another place in SoBo is selling a gorgeous floating mounted demilune table [sighs]. It has such an old feel.

Is there a design trend you wish would go away?
NB: Gray! No more gray walls, woodwork, or floors. My favorite color is gray, and in winter I love gray sweaters, boots, and pants, but it’s sooverdone in interiors here. Bring back color!
ML: Gray needs to be used sparingly; to me it goes back to too-sterile environments, where everything looks like it’s from a showroom. That needs to go. We love interiors with personality.

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