If we could describe Maxine Snider‘s approach to design into one word, it would be “meticulous.” Snider has an encyclopedic knowledge of design and architectural history that informs her interiors and her line of hand-crafted furnishings. Yet, her work has a clean, balanced feel that comes from her innate ability to bring a modernist influence to every project. We caught up with the designer (who is, not surprisingly, formally trained as an artist) to learn more about her influences, approach to decor, and the secret to creating a more modern feel in any interior. Read on to get her unique perspectives, then shop her exclusive collection at Viyet.
What inspired this career path for you?
Architecture and serendipity! In spite of my degree in graphic design, my first post-college job was with an architecture firm, selecting interior finishes and colors for their projects. As it happened, I connected immediately to that environment and I’ve never looked back. Later in my career, the pivot to creating furniture grew out of my desire for a new challenge; my focus on interiors evolved into making “the well-designed object”.
What is your go-to source for inspiration?
I find inspiration almost everywhere. I cherish travel as a powerful muse. And the admired work of others motivates me. But just as inspiring is appreciating the labor of a tended garden or an intricate textile. All of these experiences awaken something in me and move me to create and invent.
Tell us about your creative process.
There is no single process that I repeat for every result. But most often, I start with an idea or image in my mind’s eye that interests and excites me. I’ll begin sketching multiple iterations of the idea, trying out different uses and combinations of materials until there is one that is intuitively “the right one”. I tighten the sketch to a working drawing for fabrication and if it passes the unromantic tests of price, suitability, and need in the market, I say to my team, “let’s go”.
Describe your style in 6 words or less.
Classic—and more with less!
What’s a staple in your tool kit?
Who do you look up to in the design world?
I love Eileen Gray’s brave and innovative furniture from the 1920s and ’30s; they’re iconic and still relevant today.
If you could design a space for anyone, what kind of space and for whom would it be?
I’ve thought about the design of a portable portrait studio—an environment that an itinerant photographer could set up quickly and easily in remote settings and cultures for sessions with his subjects. I would make this a gift to my husband, just such a photographer, who would make beautiful pictures in it.
Tell us your favorite design-related word, phrase, or quote.
Charles Eames’ sage words, “The details are not the details. They make the design.”
Which design blog, website, TV show, or magazine would you be lost without?
The arrival of The World of Interiors magazine makes my day. It’s consistently original, artful, and inspiring.
Share a little bit about the pieces you’re consigning on Viyet?
Viyet’s deep inventory of our collection offers so many great pieces—for dining, office, bedroom, or living room. Our hope is that our furniture complements the architecture and makes the owner comfortable, happy, and proud.
What do you love about Viyet?
I love the broad swath of Viyet—designer profiles, a hip blog, and a great shopping source. The bonus—very exclusive product at very friendly price points.