How Our Moms Inspired Us From Day One

Our mothers have seen every victory and defeat, watched us grow into the person we were meant to be, and loved us every step of the way. For how unwavering our mom’s love + support has been every day of our life, it’s surprising that Mother’s Day only happens once a year. As important as it is to show our appreciation every day, Mother’s Day is the perfect opportunity to spoil her rotten and make her feel as special and important as she has made us feel from day one.


We learn so many lessons from our mothers, from how to cook noodles to how to file our taxes. We owe a lot of our talents to our moms, the ones who cheered us on at sporting events or gave us our first set of colored pencils and a sketchbook. Coming from a place near and dear to us at Mariana Home, we thought it would be wonderful to share how interior designers were inspired by their mommas and the precious lessons they passed on.

“My mother taught me the importance of proper seating for a cocktail party, trying to avoid the ‘deadly circle’ of people sitting around looking at each other. This was in the South, so she called it a sewing bee! The worst thing to have at a party! From her I learned that it is always better to have several seating groups, so not everyone is facing inward. Lots of seating, different heights and sizes and positions mean more animated conversation.”

Frank de Biasi, Frank de Biasi Interiors

“My mother had an amazing sense of style, and she gave me complete artistic license to do what I wanted in my own room. She got all the house mags monthly, and was always thumbing through them, leaving notes and tearing pages out. Having just lost her, I really see the influence she had on me. In hindsight, her style and sense of unpretentiousness has left a lasting impression. She made life look easy and having fun a must.”

Kathryn Ireland

“My mother was not afraid of color. My childhood living room was covered in a deep seafoam green carpet with upholstered sofas and draperies in chintz, and walls in pale rose pink. She gave me a passion for color and the fearlessness to mix patterns and scale.”

Martyn Lawrence Bullard

“We always had a dining room, but my mom kept a small table in the kitchen as well. It was the place where we ate, did out homework, played games, and talked. We grew up around that table, so now I always try to include a smaller table and banquette in my clients’ homes.”

Andrew Howard

“My mother taught me to always be gracious and ready to entertain anyone who stopped by. I have carried that mantra into my life—it always gives me pleasure to host others. As a designer, one of my goals is to extend that spirit of hospitality into my projects so my clients are always ready to entertain effortlessly.”

Steve McKenzie, McKenzie Design

“My mother’s carefree attitude towards design is the best lesson I’ve learnt. She was an artist, and one year we might have white walls, and the next, the deepest darkest red. She taught me was not to be tentative about anything: color, scale, pattern, anything. Through her, I let go of niggling doubts about fitting in and followed my own path.”

Abigail Ahern

“My mother was armed with the dimensions of every space in our house and a petite tape measure that didn’t junk up her purse. That way, she knew immediately if the numbers, measurements, and price worked for her when she was out shopping. I do the same thing now.”

Annie Selke

“Mom is a fabulous hostess and enjoys throwing epic dinner parties. Her tables are always adorned with fresh and fragrant clippings from the garden, luxe linens, monogrammed sterling silver, glowing candles, and attention to the last detail. Even as a young girl, I proudly recognized how my beautiful golden-haired mother turns heads. Always perfectly coiffed and impeccably dressed, wearing her signature smile, she never fails to make guests feel special and welcomed. I remember accompanying her to regular appointments to see her tailor/seamstress to be sure that her outfits fit to perfection. While I live a much more casual life, her eye and impeccable attention to the little things is ingrained in me. Her couture gowns translate into my tailored custom sofas or the perfectly pleated curtains that I design for my clients. She taught me the value of good quality and taking risks in décor and fashion. I am very grateful to Kay Morton for her colorful joie de vivre and for instilling her many talents and passions in me. Most of all, I am thankful for her unconditional love.”

Anne Hepfer

“I have my mother to thank for exposing me to simple, timeless design elements. Things like solid slipcovers with contrast piping, white sheets with scalloped edges, ceramic table lamps, and blue and white asian pottery. She wasn’t into trends, but our house was classically tasteful. I didn’t get it growing up but now I appreciate that so much.”

Betsy Burnham

Being raised in a open + creative environment is unbelievably impactful on our futures. To the mothers who nurtured our young imaginative minds, designed an accepting and comforting space to be ourselves, and introduced us to the inspiration in each day, thank you. You have cultivated a community of designers, artists, creatives, and explorers who press on in the face of diversity and contribute to a more colorful and innovative future. We owe so much of our successes to our mothers because they were the ones who never stopped believing in us, the ones who comforted us when we thought all hope was lost. Thank you to all the moms who inspired us from day one, ya’ll are the true MVP’s of this lifetime.

There is a wonderful short animated film about how the world can sometimes crush the imagination of a child, but also how parents can raise their children to never let go of their creativity. We thought it was pretty fitting so here’s a bit of emotions for your day, and share with mom if you feel so inclined.

Happy Mother’s Day!

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