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Designer Q&A: Villanova's Larisa McShane


Photo by Jared CastaldiLarisa McShane believes the best rooms to design are spaces where her clients are willing to take risks and entertain unconventional ideas. “Learn what truly inspires you,” says the Villanova interior designer. “As you move through different life stages, your preferences will change, so I think it’s important to find and follow your own internal trends.”

Her design style: “Clean and contemporary, mixing unique materials and geometry  with unexpected architectural elements.” 

Her definition of good taste: “Timeless and personal at the same time. There are rooms I designed 10 years ago that look like they were done today. Good taste doesn’t go out of style and doesn’t fade with time.”

Favorite room in her house: “My dining area has floor-to-ceiling glass doors that open up to my garden. I love the open feeling and natural sunlight.”

Designers who inspire her: “With his Glass House, architect Philip Johnson took Le Corbusier’s contemporary geometric forms and brought the element of nature into the home. Charles Stinson and Horst Noppenberger build on that philosophy by mixing geometry, form and shape with a variety of unique materials in a way that makes modern spaces feel warm and engaging.”

Favorite design advice: “Learn what makes you feel good and consciously bring those design elements, colors and materials into your space.”

Elements she loves to incorporate into a space: “I love to design with simple geometry and proportion in mind, using repetition and scale variation.”

Biggest decorating faux pas: “Not respecting scale and proposition, or creating a space to please others rather than yourself.”

Three words that sum up her design: “Timeless, personal, unique.” 

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