We have interiors on the brain and so we thought it was only fitting to sit down with our newest interior designer, Leanne Tanguay, and get her thoughts on design inspiration, trends and why she loves interior design.


What has been one of your favorite projects to work on so far at KOMA?

Leanne Tanguay: In the almost 2 years I’ve been here I’ve touched a lot of great projects. The most memorable so far is Parkview Meeting + Event Center at Mall of America – every aspect was incredible. I loved seeing this tailored and beautiful event center come to life right in the midst of a theme park. Being able to pick the materials was a highlight for me, that is where I thrive.


Why commercial interior design?

LT: I always had a pull towards design from a young age and my older brother is an architect so he was able to pass along so much about the industry.  It was also an easy decision to choose commercial design; I wanted the branding and identity piece that comes along with commercial interior design vs. residential.


Talk a little bit about the design approach at KOMA?

LT: We have a collaborative approach – coming together with different ideas and point of views to see how they gel together and find a common thread. Out of this comes the end design. Not only is the process fun but we learn from one another and because each project is so different this process is really valuable.


What is one past trend that you hope to see come back – or one you hope to never see again?

LT: I’m not necessarily huge on following trends for my projects – trends are so fleeting and they are not appropriate for every client. I do follow them to see what new technologies come with products and how I can use them to improve a space. If we’re talking fashion (and that’s where most design trends start) I’d love to see denim on denim on denim go away….forever!


Favorite source for inspiration?

LT: Design magazines and Pinterest. I love the infinite resourcing Pinterest provides and on the flip side the print brings you more of a commercial and high-end viewpoint and has beautiful stylized photography.


What is one of your favorite spots in the city for design?

LT: The Walker Art Museum. The contemporary art exhibits are always innovative and the building itself is so fascinating. Every time you walk through you get a different appreciation of the light and scale and they continually change things out like a funky wallcovering or an installation that changes the mood of the space. It gets me to think outside my box.


What is your dream project?

LT: My college thesis.  It was a law firm designed in the Open Book space, which is a two story brick building with timber interiors located in Minneapolis – I’ve always thought that would be an amazing space for a law firm. I would love to live out that very first major design project I had back from the college days!