Coffee With: Ellen Godfrey of Ellen Godfrey Design

Ellen Godfrey’s stunning new traditional style will have you pinning and pining after her natural eye for beautiful form and function with a healthy mix of color. We spoke with Ellen about paint, patience, and Little Women.

Q&A With Ellen Godfrey

Casaza: How did you get your start?
Ellen Godfrey:
The first time I got paid for my design work was designing a trade show booth for the company I was working for at the time. We would go to multiple trade shows a year and each time it was an opportunity to design a different retail space. I transitioned from that job and began designing residential and commercial spaces full time.

C: How would you describe your style?
New Traditional – I like old school architecture with a mix of modern and traditional furnishings and art.

Design by Ellen Godfrey Design

C: Where do you get new ideas and inspiration?
Movies, hotels, restaurants, traveling, blogs, Instagram…

C: Favorite room in the house?
After years and years of living in rentals, it was so fun being able to demo and design our kitchen. I wanted a green kitchen for a long time and I love how our dark green cabinets turned out.

C: Design rule you don’t subscribe to?
“Paint a small space a light color to make it feel bigger.” I like doing the exact opposite. A dark color makes a small space feel nice and cozy. No one is fooled by a light color on the walls.

C: Recent project that inspired you?
Heckfield Place in England – the design and sense of place is impeccable.

C: Favorite texture/pattern/color?
Texture: Linen. Nothing is comfier than snuggling up under a linen blanket.

Design by Ellen Godfrey Design

Pattern: Plaid. It can read both modern and traditional, is more interesting than a stripe, and I love the British flair it gives a room.

Color: I love green! Rooms just look better with it. Whether it’s from a plant, a textile, or simply paint, most rooms are improved with a hit of green.

C: What is “good design” to you?
Anytime beauty and function exist in equal parts, that’s good design.

C: Pack your bag! You’re moving into a famous home. Whose is it?
The March house in the 1994 version of Little Women. The millwork, the colors, the textiles – it all adds up to the most beautiful and cozy home.

Design by Ellen Godfrey Design

C: What’s your rule when entertaining?
If you’re laid back your guests will be too. Also – good lighting, good music, and good food are the three keys to a good time.

C: Best advice for DIYers?
Know when it’s time to hire a professional. Also – patience is key.

C: Best advice for those hiring a pro?
Remember you’re the boss. Don’t get pushed into a design decision you don’t like.

C: What is one design trend you are most excited about this season?
I am so excited that colorful wallpaper is back in style. For such a long time I felt like the trend was white walls everywhere, and while that can be beautiful (especially if you have good natural light!) a room can all of a sudden feel special and out of the ordinary simply by putting a great pattern on the walls.

Design by Ellen Godfrey Design

You can really take the look to the next level by painting the trim in the room a coordinating color to the wallpaper. These intentional choices really make a room feel thoughtful.

C: How do you take your coffee?
As an iced latte!

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