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Andie MacDowell

Karastan is a company that understands your need for self-expression. Our carpets and rugs are designed for you…your lifestyle….your home. We developed our ad campaign, “Make a Statement. Your Own.”, because we believe that a home reflects who you are. Actress Andie MacDowell, the subject of our inaugural campaign, is a perfect example of an individual who knows how to make a statement. Her full interview with Karastan begins with a description of her personal decorating style.

The Interview

Karastan is a company that understands your need for self-expression. Our carpets and rugs are designed for you…your lifestyle….your home. We developed our ad campaign, “Make a Statement. Your Own.”, because we believe that a home reflects who you are. Actress Andie MacDowell, the subject of our inaugural campaign, is a perfect example of an individual who knows how to make a statement. Her full interview with Karastan begins with a description of her personal decorating style.

KARASTAN INTERVIEWER: How would you describe your house?

ANDIE MACDOWELL: My house is a home. You know. It’s a real home—with kids, and cats, and dogs. It’s a beautiful place, but it is also functional.

Interviewer: And functional means what?

Andie MacDowell: That it is livable. You don’t have to walk around my home like your walking on eggshells. Everything in my house has can withstand the running in and out of teenagers…and we’re talking boys with size 13 shoes. The rugs in my house are made to be walked on, yet they are also beautiful.

Interviewer: So really first it has to be practical.

Andie MacDowell: Yes, because I want the kids at MY house and I want them to feel welcome and comfortable. But, I also want it to look good.

Interviewer: Right. Did you design the house yourself?

Andie MacDowell: I did, yes. And it was a lot of fun.

Interviewer: How would you characterize the style of you house?

Andie MacDowell: It’s in an old neighborhood. So I wanted a house that looked old, but I wanted it to work like a new house. It’s a Tudor and my son has the upstairs because I wanted him to feel like he has his own place. Plus, he’s really loud.

Interviewer: Let’s talk a little bit about personal style—and how you define it. What does it mean when someone says their “personal style”?

Andie MacDowell: That it makes them feel good. Ultimately, what makes you feel relaxed and happy and at peace…comfortable.

Interviewer: How do you apply your personal style at home?

Andie MacDowell: Well, I’m very sentimental, so I relate to things that mean something from my childhood. Growing up, one of my favorite places was my grandmother’s summer home. I try to copy the feel of this place in my own home. That is why I have TVs, but want to hide them. Because for me my greatest memories were not spent in front of a television, they were spent sitting on the porch, or playing cards (we played a lot of cards growing up), having dinner…just enjoying being together.

Interviewer: What is it that you remember about your grandmother’s house that you bring into your own life? Was it color?

Andie MacDowell: Yes…I like earth tones a lot. I have a lot of greens in my house, but then I also have a whole wall that’s just terra cotta. I like to mix colors. I don’t like to be too “matchy-matchy”. I like a surprise.

Interviewer: How would you describe your home?

Andie MacDowell:It’s a new home that looks like an old home. I’ve gotten loads of compliments on building my house where I did because it looks like it’s been there forever. It fits the landscape and the inside is like that, too. There’s a lot of wood, a lot of detail, but nothing flashy or ostentatious. I really don’t have a “living room” living room. I have a sitting room. It’s just enough room for people to sit down and actually have a conversation, which I really like. And, the rest of the house is mostly just—activity, a lot of activity. People coming in and out constantly. I mean, my kids and their friends, and it’s very open and inviting with lot of light. It has all wood ceilings. It’s a Tudor but it’s not a dark house. It’s a very light house—lots of windows.

Interviewer: The home sounds like the heartbeat, the gathering place of everything.

Andie MacDowell: It is. For me, my home is the most important place because I don’t want to go on vacation. I want to stay home. My job requires that I’m gone. Like this summer, I was in Montreal all summer. And so, for me, my vacation is staying at home. My home is my retreat.

Interviewer: So this is a house about love, fireplaces, communication, warmth, bringing family together, bringing friends and family together.

Andie MacDowell: That’s right. I want all my extended family to come, and everybody to come and feel welcome.

Interviewer: Is there one room in your home that is your favorite room?

Andie MacDowell: When I’m able to slow down, I find myself gravitating to one favorite spot. There is a little nook upstairs that is kind of hidden. It is small and cozy, just room enough for two soft, swivel chairs that rock, a chess board, a shelf with books, and a wood stove that I got, that’s a French, old enameled wood stove…beautiful. And a window covered with curtains that are made from panels from China, that I got at the flea market from Paris. I love to sit up there and just read.

Interviewer: Do you find that you try to create a different mood in different rooms or is there kind of a consistent feeling?

Andie MacDowell: I am very eclectic in my taste. I like to mix modern furniture with antiques. I mean, my house has a very Gothic feel to it in the shape of the windows. The basement is decorated in a mix of Moroccan and Indonesian with old tiles that I found in Texas that I think are from the Thirties. I have murals in the hallway that I found in Montana that were on the side of a train going to the First World Fair. In my garage is another mural of Indians on horses in the mountains. So I have these very eclectic-styled rooms in my house while other rooms are more traditional.

Interviewer: What is the one thing that you must have to make a home, to make your home feel like a home?

Andie MacDowell: Light, good light. How light flows through a house is important to me. Tactile quality is also important. I walk barefoot a lot, so I like my flooring to feel good underfoot.

Interviewer: So it sounds like your home is this incredibly warm place that reflects who you are.

Andie MacDowell: Yes. I’m a traditionalist at heart, but in the modern sense of the word. My piano is a perfect example because it is in a non-traditional place–my kitchen. I threw a party once and we all gathered around the piano in the kitchen. Guests always seem to gravitate to the kitchen and a piano makes it very welcoming.

Interviewer: Okay, the final question: Is this your dream house or would you dream eventually to build yet another house?

Andie MacDowell: My house is my sanctuary. I feel safe and secure here, understood and not judged. It is a reflection of who I am. Yes, this is my dream house.