​Bergmeyer Spotlight is an online series of informal interviews with members of the Bergmeyer team. We invite you to meet interior designer Catherine Keywan! Catherine has been at the firm for two years, and currently serves as the Secretary for the Retail Design Institute’s New England Chapter. Here is what she had to say during her Spotlight interview.

What led you to study interior design?

Growing up I loved to decorate. I would redecorate my room every few years. It wasn’t until researching college programs did I realize the importance interior design plays not only in aesthetics, but also safety, functionality, and overall experience of a space. On the fence between decorating and architecture, I was excited to learn interior design was a generous blend of both. I enjoyed Endicott’s program because of their holistic approach, emphasizing artistic/creative thinking as well as the constructability of interior architecture. Four years of studio projects and internships reaffirmed that I found a career that’s both purposeful and inspiring.

What is your favorite project that you have worked on at Bergmeyer?

Since joining Bergmeyer, I’ve worked on retail concepts, shop-in-shops, and prototype stores, all of which I’m passionate about. I view every project as an exciting new challenge to learn from.

One project close to my heart is WestPoint Home, a concept store for home goods. This project had a lot of firsts for me, specifically being my first project from conception to completion. Assisting a project during programming, store design, branding, fixture development, and experiencing it during the punch-list was extremely rewarding and guides how I approach current projects.

Where do you find inspiration? What inspires you?

I’ve recently developed an itch for travel…I enjoy traveling to new cities for inspiration, and absorbing everything a new place has to offer. Recent trips include Denver, Atlanta, Austin, New Orleans, Las Vegas, and next is Iceland. I try to hit significant retail stores or museums, but inspiration is born from more than just architecture. I’m excited to learn each city’s distinct culture defined by its food, music, history, and most importantly people. We design for people, so the people themselves and how they live are always the most inspiring.

Where is the favorite place you’ve visited?

My favorite place will always be Florence, Italy. I studied abroad in Florence so I have a strong emotional connection to the time I spent there. I felt more like a local than tourist; I walked historic streets every day, and spent time with an Italian family who taught me local life and cultural dishes. My favorite course focused on Renaissance art history and toured us through the city and museums. Above all, the food was what I loved the most. Even in the North End I can’t find parmigiana-reggiano as delicious as in Tuscany.

What is the one thing, not essential to survival, you would want to have with you if you were stranded on a desert island?

Chocolate. It’s essential to my survival at least. It makes me happy. Any kind of chocolate would do…except when with raspberry sauce. The only thing that belongs on chocolate is more chocolate!

Published May 22, 2017