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Back to All April 01, 2024 Profile
People: At home with Mai Nguyen—her design aesthetic and life in Houston

Mai Nguyen has an eye for balancing contemporary and classic pieces in her stunning home in Houston, Texas. We chat to her about her timeless aesthetic, form vs function, and her life as a content creator and busy mom of two.

We have been delighted to work with you over the last year and can't wait to see how it evolves. Firstly, though, can you fill us in on your journey so far, what you do, and how you got here?

Thank you so much! I’m so happy to be working with you, too! My journey has been a creative adventure. Starting from my first apartment with Josh back in 2020, my passion for interior design ignited. I've been a content creator ever since, documenting our evolving spaces and design projects. Now, as a full-time content creator, freelancing various creative work, and embracing the role of a full-time mom, it's a fulfilling blend of creativity and family. I'm excited to continue this journey and share more home and lifestyle inspiration! 

What does a typical day in the life of Mai look like?

A typical day in my life involves waking up to tend to my little ones. After that, it's breakfast time for us. Amidst multitasking mom duties, I navigate through emails and manage content scheduling and posting. Striking a balance between creative work and mom responsibilities is a juggling act, and although I hope for a better balance this new year, for now, it's a rewarding mix of both worlds as the kids are still quite young.

You live in Houston—What do the real locals do in the city? Food, entertainment, shopping hot spots?

Houston locals enjoy the vibrant food scene, which doubles as both entertainment and a hotspot. Family time at the numerous parks is a favorite, especially for the kids. When it comes to activities, exploring local events and discovering hidden food gems are popular among real locals.

We fell in love with your interior design aesthetic as soon as we landed on your Instagram page. Can you tell us about where your appreciation of design comes from?

That is sweet, thank you! The appreciation for design comes from a mix of personal experiences, a passion for my own aesthetic, and a desire to create a comfortable and stylish home for my family. 

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You have such a good eye for balancing contemporary and classic pieces; is that something you consciously do? How do you stay abreast of contemporary design and trends?

Finding that balance between contemporary and classic pieces is definitely intentional. I like to keep it fun at home with a mix of timeless and current elements. To stay updated on what’s new in design, I regularly explore design blogs and follow those blogs as well as influential designers on social media.

Mid-century, Modern, Memphis. What eras are you most influenced by?

I find influence in a bit of everything – the vibrant colors of Memphis, the sleek lines of Mid-century, and the modern functionality that feels like art. Each era contributes to a unique blend that shapes my design choices and adds a dynamic touch to our living spaces.

Form vs Function?

For me, it's all about the balance of form and function. They go hand in hand, creating spaces that are not only aesthetically pleasing but also serve a practical purpose. Striking that equilibrium ensures a harmonious and functional living environment.

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What is your most cherished item of furniture?

My most cherished item is definitely our Noguchi table and the Floyd bed. They've been with us from the start, serving as the foundation for our home. The sentimental value they hold, being part of our journey from the beginning, makes them irreplaceable.

I believe you have done some of your own furniture design; how was the experience? Any more pieces in the pipeline?

Absolutely! Collaborating on the iChair with Rift Furniture was an incredible experience. It took about a year, emphasizing the dedication to crafting good design. Currently, I'm thrilled to be working on a new collaboration, and while I can't reveal the details just yet, it'll be disclosed this year.

You were introduced to our new Lightly Chair earlier this year and partnered with us on some great content. We really admired the creative you did for us. What drew you to our brand and the Lightly Chair?

I was genuinely drawn to your brand's aesthetic and commitment to quality. The Lightly Chair, with its sleek design and versatility, immediately caught my eye. Partnering with you allowed me to explore and showcase the chair's unique features creatively. Your brand resonates with my design preferences, making it a seamless and enjoyable collaboration. Looking forward to more creative ventures together!

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And a few quick-fire questions to finish.

Describe your style in three words: Eclectic, Modern, Inviting

What is your favorite book (and favorite chair to read it in)? Currently immersed in "Shoe Dog," and my reading haven is the bed, taking advantage of babies' naptime. It's amazing how they sense when I'm not in the room, making multitasking a lifesaver. No specific chair, just the cozy comfort of the bed.

If you could have dinner with two famous people, dead or alive, who would they be? Jesus and Adam Sandler

Who's your favorite artist? Selecting one favorite artist is tough, but I'm currently captivated by the work of Yayoi Kusama for her vibrant and immersive installations. The way she explores patterns and infinity is truly inspiring.

Follow Mai on Insta @yellomai