STUDIO MAGNESS is an interior design firm founded by architectural designer Sarah Magness. From its New York City base, the company has projects worldwide and utilizes classical principals, global resources, and finely tuned project management skills to achieve every aspect of a client’s vision and lifestyle. The process — from the initial spark and early sketches to the selection of furniture, art, and rug design — is organic and layered with inquiry and research. Every element harmonizes in an orchestrated manner. Completed projects are savvy, elegant, and thoroughly comprehensive whether an urban penthouse in New York, a library in Paris, a house in Palm Beach, or a historic Edwardian residence in the Philadelphia countryside. The studio’s work has been featured by Architectural Digest, Town & Country, and Veranda, among others.
REFLECTING on her all-encompassing fascination with design, Sarah Magness pinpoints the ongoing value of progression. Education, training in classical proportion and theory, apprenticeship, love of fashion and travel, and continuous dialogue among design peers are all touchstones in her development as a thinker and artist. Sarah’s capacity to take in information and distill it is at the heart of what she does. She is a specialist in discovery and creating an experience; she sets the scene, the tone, and the table.
A seasoned traveler who has traversed both the eastern and western hemispheres, Sarah absorbs and documents her experiences via drawings and photography, steadfastly adding layers and depth to her design aesthetics. Actively aware of her clients, she is constantly researching and studying to fully render a place where they can live better. Personal connections are paramount. Sarah’s easy appeal comes from her forward trajectory, thoughtful curiosity, and experience. She builds long-term relationships not only with her clients but with builders and makers alike.
USING THE LANGUAGE OF DESIGN is satisfying to Sarah at many levels. Her sketches illuminate possibility and translate meaning for her clients. Videos of her completed work are captivating, demystifying the process and underscoring the sensory experience of a place. Likewise, collaborations with skilled artisans offer exciting opportunities to create, and the finished objects or pieces add beauty and rapport to a composition. These collective endeavors contribute to Sarah’s ability to bring soul, history, and memory to the projects she designs.
In addition to her work, Sarah is a devoted teacher with the Institute of Classical Architecture’s “New Heights” program. An advocate for early exposure to and appreciation for the built environment, Sarah partnered with the ICAA in 2015 to initiate “New Heights” for The Marymount School in New York. The curriculum, now offered by several ICAA chapters nationwide, fulfills Sarah’s dream to introduce middle and high school level students to classical architecture, urban planning, personal space, ornament, and decoration. Sarah also serves on the boards of the New York Landmarks Conservancy and Friends of Innisfree.
Sarah is ardently involved with the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art’s New Heights program which introduces fundamental concepts of building, design and architectural language to middle school students.