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15 Minutes with Melanie Stack


Melanie Stack, a seasoned designer at Pembrooke & Ives, excels in creating elegant, sophisticated spaces that blend beauty and functionality. She has particular expertise in natural stones and interior hardware. Her worldwide travels inspire each project, and her commitment to meticulous craftsmanship, client satisfaction, and strong team ethos underpin her continued success. 

We caught up with Melanie between site visits to Palm Beach to learn more about the Design Director in a quick Q&A.

What role did design play in your childhood?

My parents really encouraged my sister and I to try a variety of activities when we were young. I quickly realized that my interests were rooted in sports and the arts. As time went on, I was selected for a variety of opportunities through school and the town that featured my artistic talents. I ran with that in high school, taking all the art courses, including pottery, painting, and Interior Design which is where I truly fell in love with design.


Was there a specific moment when you knew that design was going to be your career path?

High School was when I really knew that I wanted to pursue the career path of an Interior Designer. I was lucky enough to have an Interior Design and AutoCAD class as electives. My Interior Design teacher really shared her passion for design; it was charismatic and intoxicating to dive into the world of expression, but also reality while building things.

Winter Retreat, Entrance, Photography by Kris Tamburello
Winter Retreat, Entrance, Photography by Kris Tamburello

What books are on your nightstand or coffee table?

I am currently reading The Perfectionist’s Guide to Losing Control by Katherine Morgan Schafler. It’s an interesting read on different types of perfectionism and how women manage it in their real lives in a positive light. On other nights, sometimes I will read a few pages in The New Wine Rules by Jon Bonne, it’s a simple short book on wine, one of my occasional indulgences.


Where do you go to get inspired?

Inspiration can come in so many forms. I love to be inspired by nature and the environment where our project is located. I also love to be inspired by history, both in architecture, design, and trends. It is exciting to revitalize older ideas and concepts with new twists.

What is your favorite piece of furniture in your home?

My coffee table. It has a beautiful Toronto marble stone top with a leathered texture and a blackened steel base. It’s unique and a statement piece.


If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

I love traveling to Europe, there is so much preserved history to see and admire. Italy, France, and Portugal are some of my favorites. It’s amazing to see first-hand how the architecture, food, and culture is influenced in different countries and cities. To be transported to another world, even if for a short trip, is always worth it. I hope to visit Norway in the near future.

West Side Elegance - Pembrooke & Ives - West Side living room design with teal accent chairs, decorative...
West Side Elegance, Photography by Genevieve Garruppo

What is your favorite restaurant in New York City?

La Pecora Bianca is one of my favorite restaurants for Italian, the environment resembles a classic Italian bistro and the food is always delicious. Vin Sur Vingt is a cozy spot I visit with friends for a glass of wine.


If you could add any luxury amenity to your home, what would it be?

I would add a fireplace with a great mantel. Fireplaces have a classic charm. They are a symbol of comfort, relaxation and can be a great centerpiece. The glow of the flames and the crackling sounds combined just make me want to curl up with a good book.

Who is a designer or architect that you look up to?

There are so many. It’s hard to choose just one! Carlos Scarpa is an Italian Designer that really played with light and form throughout his spaces. There is a distinctive and unexpected nature in his work that is attractive.


What advice would you give to anyone who wants to become a designer?

Be a sponge. There is nothing more valuable than your time with a mentor, on a jobsite, or with the artisans and craftsman we work with every day. We are lucky to be in an industry where our creative expressions are fabricated into reality! The chaos and stress are all worth it for the final reveal and finished spaces.

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