Molie Malone: Designing an Elegant Home

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When it comes to elegant design, we want it all.

We want understated beauty AND luxurious comfort. We want a reflection of who we are AND who we want to be. We want modern AND we want classic. But most of all, we want it to feel like home every time we walk through the door.

This is not an easy task to accomplish, but it can all start with an impeccably bespoke wide plank floor from our Elegant Collection! Crafted from Rift & Quartersawn White Oak and enhanced by our one-of-a-kind natural hues, this unique combination creates a perfect foundation for gracious living.

As for the rest of your home, we decided to talk to someone who is known for livable luxury style, San Francisco Designer, Molie Malone. We had the pleasure of catching up with Molie for a chat about her experience with Carlisle, her early years as a tag-along antique collector, and her secrets to designing an elegant home…

Molie Malone, Interior Designer

The Interview

Molie Malone, Golden City Designer

C: Molie, thanks for taking time for us! We are talking about elegant design today and know that you’re a master at creating spaces that are both elegant and easy to live in!

M: “Oh, I am flattered that you considered me! I’m staging for a photo shoot as we speak, so don’t mind my moving around!”

C: Great! We won’t keep you long, but we’ll start with Carlisle: You work with our San Francisco showroom and have a couple different floors on order. Why Carlisle?

M: “It’s the BEST. The quality of a Carlisle floor is higher than anything else on the market and I love that I don’t have to wait — every bit of the process is phenomenal! When you walk into the showroom the specialists are incredibly informed and excited about their product! Their energy is contagious and I want to share in that experience!”

Alta Vista Master Bath: Designer Molie Malone

C: That’s awesome! We ARE very enthusiastic about our floors! When you say you don’t have to wait, what exactly are you referring to?

M: “Carlisle service is impeccable! From start to finish, my projects move at a steady pace and I never have to wait for a thing! When I need samples, they are readily available. And once our order is placed, we know that our floors will be finished on time. That’s hard to come by in this industry. It’s a dream!”

C: Let’s talk a little about your background. You started your career as a psychotherapist, then moved into the design space after opening a successful antique store… we want to hear more…

M: “Yes! My mom and grandmother were these crazy old-school women who influenced me at a young age. My grandmother was a talented seamstress and expert gardener and my mom a collector. I grew up hunting for antiques with them and got bit by the bug when I put my first set of dishes on layaway at the age of fifteen! How many teenagers graduate from high-school with a complete set of china?”

Living Room by Interior Designer Molie MaloneC: You definitely have the design gene! But you started out as a therapist?

M: “Yes, I left my practice when I relocated from Chicago back to San Francisco. I took a year off to settle in and that’s when I really started collecting, which led me to open my store. At the time, I thought maybe visual merchandising might be in my future. But once customers started asking for real help, I knew design school would be my next step.”

C: And that was more than 15 years ago! Do you think your background as a therapist plays a role in who you are as a designer?

M: “Absolutely. I consider it a privilege to work in someone’s home and believe a small measure of my success comes from honoring the privacy of my clients. This is a relationship business. Fortunately, my background has given me the ability to talk about everything; even the uncomfortable things. Life is full of transitions, and in my line of work, it all gets talked about. My background helps me help others.”

C: We love it! So Molie, you’ve described ‘livable luxury’ as spaces that are intentional, thoughtful, but not ‘over done’. Can you give us 3 secrets to designing an elegant home?

M: “Yes! First, Edit. Edit. Edit. Remember, Less IS more. Don’t make purchases for the reason of just filling the space. Wait to see what you really need then choose something you love. I’ve learned that thoughtfully purchased, well-placed items will evoke a sense of elegance when they have room to breathe and be truly appreciated.

Second. Natural materials in their purest form are the most elegant. Natural wood, like Carlisle floors. Natural stone. Natural fabrics. When materials are unadulterated, they maintain an unparalleled sense of integrity, beauty and refinement for multiple generations to enjoy.

And lastly, which is really a note to the end user: Whenever you make a purchase, buy the best quality that you can afford at that time in your life. When quality craftsmanship and great design see eye to eye, the result is inevitably timeless and eternally elegant.

We couldn’t agree more! As for elegant design, when you combine beautiful product like a Carlisle floor with the talent and insight from Molie Malone, you CAN have it all. To read more about Molie Malone, view her gallery, or connect with her on social, you may visit her at:

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Want to see the remarkable beauty of our wide plank flooring? Visit the Elegant Collection or order samples.
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