Michael Boodro Interview

Q&A With Elle Decor's Michael Boodro

I'm excited to present a post from one of my favorite sites, ShelterPop!

The shelter magazine Editor-in-Chief talks about the importance of great light, motivating yourself to clean and how he chooses the houses that appear in ELLE DÉCOR.

Last week when I toured the ELLE DÉCOR Modern Life Concept House, Michael Boodro kindly sat down to answer my nosy questions. Want to eavesdrop on the conversation? Come right in.

ShelterPop: When it comes to homes, everyone has to give up something to get the rest of what they want. What do you give up?

Michael Boodro: As much as a I love a room with a view, I'd give up a view for a great neighborhood or for the architecture of a space. I have a nice view in my apartment, it's just streets and other buildings -- no river view like the Concept House -- but I live in a neighborhood that I love and I have nice light. That's something I couldn't give up.

ShelterPop: What's the easiest way to give a home the ELLE DÉCOR touch in an afternoon?

Michael Boodro:
Clean off one surface and get some flowers in the room. Cleaning off a surface -- cocktail table, bookshelf, kitchen counter, anything -- is such an important thing to do. Take a look at what's there and ask yourself: What have you stopped appreciating? Rotate it out with something else. Then add flowers. Go to the flower market, the deli, get a branch of cherry blossoms. It will make your weekend so much more entertaining.

ShelterPop: It's true -- just getting rid of extra things sitting around can make a huge difference. But how do you get motivated to start?

Michael Boodro: You just have to get sick of looking at it. You have to look at something and decide that, OK, this is an intolerable situation. Spring is a good time for this -- more sunlight comes, you see the dirty windows, you start to notice the piles accumulating. It's a good time to weed out the bookcases, give things away. It's very liberating.

ShelterPop: What would people be surprised to find out about your job?

Michael Boodro: My job is not just to publish beautiful rooms. If that's all you do, they start to look alike. We have to do unusual rooms, homes that are ahead of the curve and homes that are so far ahead of the curve that they look backwards. We see a lot of houses that are very beautiful but we have to say no sometimes. People always ask me: "What are you looking for?" I know it when I see it.

ShelterPop: What would people be surprised to find out about your house?

Michael Boodro: Well, people who come to my apartment in the city would be surprised at my country house...and vice versa. because they have very different personalities. Both of which I love. My New York apartment is all about very pale colors and my country house is very vivid.

ShelterPop: Could you switch them?

No. It has to do with the light. New York City lighting is more gray. And being out in the country you go out more, so you can take more intense color. In the city, I come home and I really want serenity. In the country, it's more active. The country is more about flea market finds, the city is a more refined space.

Thanks, Michael!

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