Interiors designed by Michael Del Piero are full of delightful contradictions. She designs minimalist rooms rich with historical character, meticulously edited gallery-like spaces that still have the comforting warmth of home, and breezy abodes with crisp architectural details that feel tailored rather than severe. But the fact that her projects, sprinkled across the United States, come off as reassuringly familiar yet entirely fresh, as they blend elements of American and European style, is a direct result of her background.
The designer was born and raised in Chicago. She worked for decades as a business coach, advising executives at Fortune 500 companies on how to further their goals, inspire their people and energise their operations. At the same time, she dove head-first into design, almost without realising it. Thrilled by the hunt for distinctive antiques, unusual objects and compelling art, she loved few things more than combing auction houses and flea markets for unexpected finds.
Enjoying herself too much to go back to corporate consulting, Del Piero took on the mantle of antiques dealer, and began making regular buying trips to Europe and hosting biannual sales, composing a different interior design scheme in a different house each time. Every sale was more successful than the last, but it didn’t take long for some of her customers to see the larger picture: the objects Del Piero brought back were beautiful, but it was the way she used them to create cohesive, compelling interiors that was the real attraction.