Three North Shore boutiques offer interior design inspiration
If the last two years have taught us anything, they certainly emphasized the importance of our homes. Home has been where the heart is, with family, work, meals and safety. As local interior designers have taken on more work than ever, they have also come to appreciate the new role of our homes as the most valuable space we have.
Three trusted North Shore interior designers – Gina Baran, Holly Gagne and Linda Reilly Newall – all flaunt their design sense and favorite pieces in their boutiques. Extensions of design companies, in-person shops help customers get an idea of exactly what they like or dislike.
“There’s nothing in our shop that I wouldn’t even use at home,” says Gina Baran. For a beautifully curated home that combines comfort with sleek design, step into one of these boutiques for some inspiration.
Gina Baran, House Baran
On Pleasant Street in Newburyport, Gina Baran’s boutique, Baran Home, offers meticulously curated homewares. Baran only sells items she uses in her own designs and sources ethically from around the world, maintaining relationships with fair trade suppliers.
While Gina Baran Interiors + Design is a full-service design firm “specializing in new construction, major renovations, and full furnishing,” Baran explains, the boutique gives clients just a taste, perfect for people who are looking to spruce up a room or two at their own pace. Store visitors can chat with an associate for one-on-one design help, whether they’re redecorating their living room and need advice, looking for decorating advice, or just want to come in and see what’s what. speaks all this commotion.
“Baran Home is really a way to achieve an accessible design look,” says Baran. She finds inspiration for her designs, which she calls “a refreshing take on the modern coast,” her family’s Italian hometown, and her travels in Mexico. In her store, you’ll find plenty of soothing neutrals and interesting textures from selections from her favorite vendors and artisans.
Baran says she feels honored thinking about the lifetime memories families will create in the rooms she had to design. “It always gives me goosebumps to think about their story and how we played a part in it,” she says.
49 Pleasant Street, Newburyport, 617-564-3746, ginabaran.com
Linda Reilly Newall, Surroundings
At Surroundings Home Furnishings & Interior Design in Marblehead, Linda Reilly Newall showcases some of her favorite fabrics, furniture, wallpaper and accessories of the moment. However, after working in the business for over thirty years, the folks at Surroundings can find just about anything their customers are looking for. “We have access to many resources, which allows us to create the type of home you want to live in,” says Newall.
Selecting textiles is one of Entourage’s specialties, and there’s no better way to discover the textiles that will take your pieces to the next level than in person, seeing and touching for yourself. .
The environment also features choice rugs, lighting, and furnishings.
“I love what I do because it’s always different — there’s always a new challenge that helps you grow,” says Newall, describing a satisfied customer as one of the best perks of the job. While navigating current industry challenges, like supply chain issues and the ongoing pandemic, Newall says she remains patient and creative. “The main lesson learned over the past two years is that customer service has always been the key to success,” she says.
96 Washington Street, Marblehead, 781-639-0676, environmentsinterieurdesign.com
Holly Gagné, Holly Gagné Studio + Shop
In Holly Gagné’s interior design business, her team has a solid foundation in construction techniques and interior architecture. But when it comes to the little things that make a house, nurturing trust among his clients is vital to Gagné. “Keeping our clients calm, informed and supported during what can be a stressful time is as important to us as a successful conception plan,” she says.
According to Gagne, there’s no better way for clients to connect with his design acumen than by visiting his studios in Rowley or Camden, Maine. “Great design creates an emotional response, and we can really feel that initial alignment when our customers visit our store,” she says. Ultimately, a harmony in design sensibility will solidify trust between client and designer, making the process smooth.
Gagné draws inspiration from organic materials and natural light, citing the calming, grounding benefits of immersion in nature that she likes to incorporate into her home designs (and her own home). “When I need to retreat, I always turn to nature. … It’s the Maine in me,” she says, describing some of her design pillars as “simplicity” and “authentic materials.” made by the earth.
While his industry has seen its ups and downs over the past two years, Gagne remains focused on the positives, learning to study his own priorities and slow down a bit. “The good news is that we all learn to practice patience and let go of certain things,” she says, “especially things that aren’t as important as our health and well-being.”
136 Fenno Dr., Rowley, 978-432-1337; 58 Bay View Street, Camden, Maine, hollygagne.com