Episode 082: Carey Karlan
Carey Karlan A Designing Career
Born in Oklahoma from a line of southern women who like to decorate and always had flowers on the table, interior designer Carey Karlan developed an enduring love for decorating at an early age. Raised in Darien and a graduate of Trinity College, Carey stayed in the northeast and began her career as an advertising VP in New York City. She became established in the field and was written up in Working Woman Magazine for being a prominent female figure in a male-dominated workforce. After a decade of this lifestyle, Carey headed back to Darien to concentrate on motherhood of five children, and taking classes at the New York School of Interior Design. Additionally, she did volunteer work for several charitable organizations and is renowned for her entertaining flair.
Carey Karlan The Start of Something Good
Embracing her knack for decorating, Carey worked at a local design store Persnickety to gain the training and experience necessary before opening her own venture, Last Detail. Her office is in a To the Trade designer showroom, located in Stamford, Connecticut. Locally, Carey has projects in Darien, New Canaan, and Greenwich, as well as in New York City, Nantucket, Florida and in San Francisco. The Stamford Advocate has sung her praises multiple times, and one of her projects was featured on a Darien house tour. Carey Karlan prides herself in not being limited to decorating a certain size or style home.
Having lived in, loved, and decorated cottages and large homes alike, Carey has experimented with every style and technique possible, creating a wide array of possibilities to please her clientele. From stenciling floors to head-dressing decorative busts, Carey has tried everything with spectacular results. Carey is proud of her ability to avoid a predictable trademark style, having a tremendous skill in interpreting her clients’ desires and thereafter creating a coherent look for their homes.
Karlan has wonderful long-term working relationships with many of her clients, who specifically appreciate her talent in furniture placement and high-quality window treatments. Carey’s design philosophy embraces the concept of flexibility. She listens intently to her clients and prides herself on having the ability to envision and create interiors to suit any size of style of home and any lifestyle. Her ability to understand and translate her clients’ personal desires into stunning interiors has earned her a portfolio of loyal clients and her work has been featured in atHome Magazine, New England Home Connecticut, Cottages and Gardens and the Stamford Advocate. She has been invited to participate in Rooms With A View, the Designer Showhouse of Westchester, the American Fashion Showhouse at the Aldyn in New York City, the People’s Project at the Connecticut Governor’s Residence and the Greenwich Red Cross Red and White Ball. She was the recipient of both the A-List Interior Design Awards and a two-time finalist of the Cottages and Gardens IDA Award and speaks frequently on the subject of interior design.
One unique aspect of Carey’s design process is the makeover phase that she has adopted. Equipped with a truckload of accessories, Carey fills in all of the gaps in her projects with artwork, pillows, bookcase accessories, lamps, and more until the room looks complete. Her clients then live with these accessories for a few days and then decide which they will purchase. This essential final phase is just another component of Carey Karlan’s distinctive styling that combines her expertise with the wishes of her satisfied clients.