Behind the Design: Maureen McDermott of Winter McDermott Design
Behind the Design: Ivy Design Firm Winter McDermott Design – Sag Harbor, NY
How did you get where you are today?
Maureen McDermott: I’m originally from Long Island and lived in Manhattan for 10 years while going to design school at NYSID and working for architects and design studios. After starting a family, my husband and I decided to move to the East End of Long Island for a quieter pace of life. I started Winter McDermott Design in 2013 and now have a design studio in Sag Harbor.
What is Winter McDermott Designs approach to design and client interaction?
MM: We love approachable, calm, minimal, and tranquil interiors. Design for us is creating homes for our clients where they can escape their every day stresses and really relax and feel at home and happy. Our interaction with clients always comes from a place of honesty and transparency. We care (a lot!) and their happiness really matters to us.
You’re based in Sag Harbor, New York…Who are your favorite local vendors and people of the trade?
How do you maintain healthy relationships with the vendors and tradespeople you work with?
MM: Treating them with respect and kindness at all times is really important. We are all in this together!
Have you joined any design communities?
MM: No I haven’t felt a need to. I have a lot of supportive friends who are in the industry that are able to be a source of inspiration and comfort.
How does designing make you feel? What’s your business mantra?
MM: It makes me feel accomplished and fulfilled. I’ve had clients cry, scream, and be their authentic selves when walking into a completed home. It really is like nothing else. The feeling of happiness you can get by making others happy is indescribable.
In moments of clients dilemmas or design block, how do you pick yourself back up?
MM: I think about it constantly for about a day or two and then just tell myself to move on. Having a family really puts the small things into perspective. I try not to waste too much time on negative thoughts.
How do you define professional success? How do you define personal success?
MM: Professional success to me is being excited to go to work everyday. I’ve created a life and business where I am truly happy and love what I do. Personal success is having great friends and family. My family is everything to me and are able to really ground everything I do.
Why did you choose Ivy as your software of choice to centralize your business management needs?
MM: I love that it ties to my QuickBooks Online account. My bookkeepers don’t need to learn another software program. Instead, they use QuickBooks while I use Ivy and we’re able to find a common way to work.
What’s an Ivy feature you can’t live without?
MM: There’s so much. We are in Ivy everyday for hours and I’ve become so dependent on it. “Add new payment” and “make a payment” are invaluable with keeping track of money in/money out.
Would you recommend Ivy to a designer friend?
MM: Yes for sure. So many designers I know are literally still using Excel to keep track of everything. I think Ivy creates a very professional way to stay organized and I don’t think an interior business should be without it.
Photography by Jacob Snavely
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