Matthew Patrick Smyth
If you could have a second home anywhere, where would you live? I have a second home in Paris… je ne regrete rien.
What are three words to describe your style? Appropriate, classic, and unpretentious.
Tell us about your childhood bedroom? It was a relatively small room that I shared with my two brothers. Being the oldest, I was always on the top bunk. It felt very removed and private …at least in my mind. The room’s walls were covered in an early American style 60s wallpaper. The paper had a brown ground with cream medallions and red drawings of various weathervane motifs. I give my mother an “a” for effort.
What’s the first investment piece you ever bought for your house? After graduation from F.I.T. I had my first job in NYC. It was in 1981 and one Saturday, I found a 1940s sunburst mirror at a flea market. It was only $45…but I only cleared $90 a week. I agonized about spending half my paycheck so early in the week;I bought it anyway. I still have the mirror and always will.
In the history of design, if you could hire any designer other than yourself, who would it be? I have always been a David Easton fan, and I still am! He’s the reason I came into the business. I would have loved to have been his client! He was great with the clients …it was always a happy and fun process.
No room is complete without dimmer switches.
People think of me as reserved and quiet, but i am really not!
Things you omit from:
• A flower arrangement: Excess leaves
• An hors d’oeuvre platter: Messy bruschetta
• A bar cabinet: Tequila
A song for:
• Dinner at home: Mozart’s Symphony #41
• Working at your desk: Joni Mitchell “Free Man In Paris”
• Going for a run: Eurythmics “Sweet Dreams”
Biggest vice? Going to the theater 3 nights a week
If you were on an Ambien high and internet shopping, what would you buy? David Hicks vintage ties on E-bay
Do your clothes reflect your design sensibility, if so, how? Keep it simple.
Who is your star crush? Daniel Day Lewis
What is the thing you would never do on a project, but don’t detest when you see others do it? Compulsive color matching
If there were a fire, and you could only keep one design book, what would it be? The Book Of Interior Design & Decoration (1976) by Norma Skurka. It was the first design book I ever bought and is still my favorite.
For posterity, what would you like your work to be known for? Handsome interiors for nice people.
A Few Favorites
Movie: La Confidential
Book: A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Scent: Monsieur Balmain
The fabric you always come back to: Rogers & Goffigon “Bechamels”
Dream project: my own (fantasy) house on the west coast of Ireland
Meal: Bouillabaisse at restaurant Chez Michel in Marseilles
Hotel: The Oberoi Udaivilas
Travel destination: Cartagena, Columbia
Thing to collect obsessively: Elephants
Era in the history of design: English Regency
Museum: The Clark Art Institute
Paint color that always look great: Benjamin Moore Color Stories “Notre Dame”
Favorite person to follow on instagram: @gustthepoodle
Dogs, cats, or no pets? Dogs in theory…no pets in reality