Interior designer Margaret Chambers is a pillar in the Dallas design community. She formed Chambers Interiors & Associates, Inc. 23 years ago after dreaming of having her own business, becoming known for her ability to confidently mix different styles, techniques, and cultures for her clients.
In those years, she’s come to regard Dallas as the ideal place for her thriving business, which employs five professionals, with every designer in the office having a degree in interior design.
“It is really a perfect place to practice interior design—people are very aware of interior designers and appreciate their ability to transform their home or office into a wonderful place to live and work,” Chambers said. “In Dallas, people can see a difference when a professional interior designer has created a space. In addition, Dallas is an international city and is continuing to grow, making it an exciting place for design to serve a wide range of people.”
Chambers’ work is award-winning, and has been published in more than 20 industry magazines, including Traditional Home, Texas Home & Living, and D Home. She is also a friend of CandysDirt, telling our readers about everything from kitchen design and investing in antiques to picking a chandelier and the best strategies to use to get your home on the market and sold.
You’ll find Chambers’ work in Highland Park, Preston Hollow, Plano, and other North Texas homes of discriminating clients, spanning a range of styles.
“I always try to make my work as classical and timeless as possible, whether I am doing a contemporary, transitional, or traditional home,” she said. “I want each project to have its own unique style that reflects the client’s unique taste. I also love to add in furniture, art, and accessories that are handmade. I feel these add warmth and a soul to the interior; they bring with them a history that enriches a space.”
Chambers grew up in New Mexico and discovered her interest in design early. Seeing the New Mexico Indian cliff dwellings, as well as a trip to Mexico, influenced her style.
“We took a family trip to Mexico City where I was exposed to a completely different style of architecture with a European influence,” she said. “Architecture and interior design really go hand in hand—both should complement each other. I enjoy researching what each of my clients is interested in and working to make a unique and special space for them, whether it’s a residence, office, or hotel.”
She landed in Texas after studying fine arts at New Mexico State.
“I came to Dallas to study interior design—I looked at several programs in different cities, from Phoenix to San Francisco, but decided on Dallas after visiting here,” she said. “I thought it was a beautiful city and not too far from home. I’ve seen over the years just how great Dallas is for interior designers. We have access to one of the best design districts in the country, with hundreds of showrooms that service the interior design community. But even more so, the clients here understand the importance of hiring a professional to put together their homes or offices.”
After finishing design school, Chambers took a summer tour of Europe, spanning ten different countries.
“When I was in each place, I visited museums, palaces, and stately homes to understand the influence that they have had on architecture and interior design,” she said. “I loved seeing so many wonderful things in person that I had only seen on slides at school. I later went to Rome, Florence, and Venice with Parsons where we had renowned professors who were leading experts in their fields.”
The time in Europe still impacts her work today.
“Afterwards, I came away appreciating the time and care that went into creating so many beautiful antiquities in Europe, handmade pieces that probably will never be created again,” she said. “The craftsmanship of those artisans is more and more rare—there is so little time now! And this makes the fine antiques of the world more and more fascinating and valuable.”
Chambers says she loves providing antiques and handmade items for her clients that have a rich history.
“While I like to stay true to certain styles—whether it’s Country French, English, or Italian—I also love to mix them,” she said. “For instance, I sometimes use beautiful objects from Guatemala, India, or Africa as accents in contemporary homes. In terms of products, I love using fabric lines such as Brunschwig & Fils, Lee Jofa, and Clarence House.”
If Chambers weren’t an interior designer, she says she’d still be involved in some aspect of design.
“Since I am so passionate about antiques and their history, I could see myself educating others on European antiques and design,” she said. “I know it was a special thing for me when I studied in Europe with Parsons and I would love to share that with others.”
Chambers Interiors is actually providing a new service right now that aligns closely with this.
“I am working with Lea Kellogg Barfield, who studied at Christie’s in London and has been leading buying trips and lectures series throughout Europe for years,” she said. “We have launched a new private buying trip service—Tour Decor—where we go with our clients one-on-one to pick out furniture for their homes after space-planning beforehand. We have already gone to Belgium, France, and Sweden to source some great pieces in not only shops and markets but also in private homes. We are even doing architectural sourcing, which is another exciting aspect. We feel that interior design is very personal in nature. This service has been an excellent opportunity to bring our clients into the design process and become knowledgeable about their new home.”
Chambers is also passionate about the Lee Park and Arlington Hall Conservancy.
“Lee Park is one of the most beautiful parks in Dallas and it’s one of the first,” she said. “In the past decade, Arlington Hall and Lee Park have been restored, and I’ve had a pleasure being involved in keeping the interiors up to date.”
You can keep up with Chambers’ design insights on her blog, see her columns in Real Estate Quarterly, and keep an eye out for her regular appearances here on CandysDirt. She is a natural educator, sharing her perspective with clients and the wider world, offered in a spirit of design collaboration and genuine pleasure in sharing the creative process with those around her.