While Baltimore is a big tourist destination, thanks to attractions like its numerous museums, Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Mount Vernon, Fort McHenry, and of course, Mr. Trash Wheel. A population of over 600k people live within its 72 neighborhoods, a number that saw an increase for the first time in decades in back in 2012. A city with a people as varied as its history sports distinct designs that range from the elegant to the modern. The following interior designers are the best of the best, transforming homes that catch the notice of Houzz, trade and style magazines, and a growing list of clients.

Top Designers

Laura Hodges Studio, LLC

Laura Hodges

Catonsville, MD 21228

About Laura Hodges Studio, LLC

Laura Hodges, a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Accredited Professional (LEED AP), started her career by earning degrees in both interior design and business, before moving on to work under Jamie Drake and Thomas Jayne, two established, New York-based designers. Today, she is the owner of her own boutique interior design studio, working in both Baltimore and Washington, DC. Her LEED accreditation allows her to incorporate sustainable design choices into her work, an important quality for Charm City homes. Her goal is to give her clients homes that are sophisticated and welcoming, so it fits that the Catonsville interior designer welcomed the Baltimore Sun into her home as part of the publication’s feature on her. Hodges offers her sustainable brand of design for every room in the house.

“My signature aesthetic is bold classicism which I define simply as high contrast, clean and classic design. It’s timeless and tailored, incorporating unique vintage and antique finds, local art and influences, eclectic styles and natural elements. Seemingly simple and uncomplicated, there are always layers of discoverable details that bring visual interest and start conversations.”  – Laura Hodges

Featured Projects

In 2015, Hodges worked with the kitchen, family room, and bedroom of a Baltimore County Colonial home. By the time she was done, each room had a distinct character that mirrored the room’s function. The kitchen is colorful and bright and has the most energy of the three featured rooms. The family room is more reserved in beige and gold, to match the sepia-tinted photos of the homeowners’ travel photos on the wall. Finally, there’s the bedroom, which is in stark black and white. For a more upscale project, Laura Hodges Studio worked on a Manhattan Condo. Slightly oversized, plush furniture turned a small space into a cozy and welcoming oasis. Rugs accentuate each room, providing a focal point, including an oval rug over a clear, round dining room table, underneath an elegant chandelier. While each room has a slightly different color palette, the overall design is uniform across all rooms, enlarging the feel of the space as a whole.

Michelle Miller Interiors

Michelle Miller

2654 Maryland Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21218

About Michelle Miller Interiors

The former antiques-shop owner behind Michelle Miller Interiors has had over a decade of experience in home design. She has applied her style — described as clean and exquisite — all over the Baltimore Metro region and beyond, from family homes in DC, row homes in Baltimore, to apartments in Manhattan. Miller advocates the use of natural materials in her designs and emphasizes cleanliness and sophistication. She also believes in the part psychology plays in crafting the best possible interiors for her clients. Miller urges them not to clean their spaces before her first visit so she can get a sense of how they really live. Her designs have been featured on the covers of Home & Design and Chesapeake Home, as well as in the Baltimore Sun, the Baltimore Magazine, Style, and Charmed.

Featured Projects

The City House in Baltimore is able to look out onto the city’s famous Inner Harbor, so Miller aimed to design a living space inside that would rival the views outside. Beige, gold, and green was used throughout the home, found on wall decorations and plant accents, but never too much to drown out the natural light. The ornamentation that is there is minimal yet necessary. For the Hill House, Miller took an opposite approach and played with color and pattern. Animal print, color blocking, and stripes blend together in unexpected synchronicity. The bright whites and blues reflect the young family for whom the design was created, and the home evokes an elegant yet playful beachy vibe. Lastly, Michelle Miller Interior’s South River Home has a transformed backyard, complete with a large pool and deck, and a beautifully crafted rock waterfall running directly into the hot tub.

Mona Hajj Interiors

Mona Hajj

Architectural Digest’s 100 top designers and architects

13 East Eager Street, Baltimore, MD 21202

About Mona Hajj Interiors

The African-born Mona Hajj has been working in interior design for 20 years, having been named one of Architectural Digest’s 100 top designers and architects. Hajj’s education in Europe, Lebanon, and the United States, coupled with her world travels, resulting in a distinct style driven by a goal of making people “feel their home is the only place in the world they want to be.” Her designs squeeze a whole world into a single space by using Persian rugs, Japanese screens, and Italian chandeliers. Across her two decades of designing, Hajj has been the subject of articles in Southern Home, House Beautiful, Luxe – Los Angeles, Architectural Digest, Southern Accents, Deco, Style, and Design Times. Hajj has also written and published a book in The Monacelli Press, titled Mona Hajj: Interior Visions, in which her exotic choice in fabrics and furnishings are on full display.

Featured Projects

Nowhere else can Hajj’s worldly influences be seen than in the exquisite design of family room. The colors seem as aged as the furniture, the decorations are plucked from Japan, America, Africa, and China, and it all contrasts with the modern rug. Hajj’s work creates a sense of wandering in space and time in one’s own home. This aesthetic is apparent again in a dining room arrangement. The eye starts at the European-style lanterns hanging above and flanking the classic American dinner table, and lands on the Eastern-looking painted, clay vase with delicate flowers. Even when the décor in the room is at its most varied, as seen in one of Hajj’s library treatments, all of the items collaborate together to draw a unified whole, even with otherwise disparate items, like the classic European portrait next to the Australian print. The tapestry echoes the colors of the seating, and the fireplace tiling complements the porcelain on the mantle.

Jenkins Baer Associates

Jay Jenkins
Alexander Baer
Katherine Crosby
Leslie Rose

24 West Chase Street, Baltimore, MD 21201

About Jenkins Baer Associates

Jay Jenkins is the president of this Baltimore-based firm, leading a team of seven other associates, including Alexander Baer, who has 39 years of experience in the industry; Katherine Crosby, whose previous clients include Christie’s auction house and Sotheby’s real estate; and Leslie Rose, a former designer for Ralph Lauren’s corporate interiors. Between the members of the team, Jenkins Baer has appeared in the Scout Guide, the Baltimore Sun, Chesapeake Home & Living, and Home & Design. Prospective clients who want to keep up with the team can follow their blog or Instagram pages.

Featured Projects

The following designs showcase the work of Jenkins Baer associate Elizabeth Reich, whose designs have graced the pages of Annapolis Home, Style, and Home & Design. Reich’s Gibson Island project was completed in 2016 for a sum between $150k and $200k. The metallic textures of her design combined with the dark wood choices in the furniture contribute to the seaside character of the space and give it an Old World feel. Meanwhile, the light walls and furniture pieces bring in the light from the bay view and suffuse it throughout the living room. Her Tree House in Baltimore looks out into woodlands, which is reflected by the space’s wooden furniture and decoration choices. It creates a harmonious effect between the outdoors and the interior. The property uses uniquely shaped light fixtures and reds and browns to create a home that is both rustic and modern.

Fitzsimmons Design Associates Inc.

Gina Fitzsimmons

Annapolis Home Mag. 2016 Design Award, ASID Md. 1st Place Kitchen & Bath & 1st Place Show House Design

918 Bay Ridge Road, Annapolis, MD 21403

About Fitzsimmons Design Associates Inc.

Serving Baltimore, Annapolis, and Washington, DC since 1991 is Gina Fitzsimmons, a professional member of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID). Fitzsimmons’ three-decade-long career began at the Maryland Institute of Art College in Baltimore and continues today with a stable of satisfied homeowners. The firm has made a name for itself through its appearances in Chesapeake Home, Annapolis Home, Annapolis Quarterly, Solutions at Home, Home & Design, Baltimore Magazine, and Capital Style. Fitzsimmons also has the honor of being a Capital Readers Choice finalist for her designs. The firm offers kitchen and bath design, space planning, lighting plans, project management, and wall treatments to clients.

I love my job as an interior designer in Annapolis. 75% of our clients live on the waterfront and really enjoy our Coastal perspective on design. Every day is inspiring, as we enhance our clients’ homes incorporating their beautiful views. – Gina Fitzsimmons

Featured Projects

Fitzsimmons Design was selected to participate in the 38th Baltimore Symphony Show House at Silo Point. The space they were assigned was a penthouse condo on the 23rd and 24th floors of a silo built in 1923, complete with a harbor view. Fitzsimmons decided the challenge was to humanize the room and make it more of an inviting living space. To that effect, great white sheets reminiscent of sails were floated over the main seating area, where they also added a custom-built cocktail table and wet bar. The oar-lined wall completes the coastal influence. Located in Queenstown is a project that Fitzsimmons considers one of her favorites: the Wye River Home. Across the 6,000-square-foot home, the clients and the Fitzsimmons team completely revamped and upgraded the existing features. They ended up with a comfortable home drenched in gold, and light streaming in from four floor-to-ceiling bay windows placed side by side.

April Force Pardoe Interiors

April Force Pardoe

Chrysalis Award for Remodeling Excellence

Elkridge, MD 21075

About April Force Pardoe Interiors

April Force Pardoe Interiors has serviced the area for the last decade. The firm’s owner and principal designer is April Force Pardoe herself, an experienced interior design consultant who has been featured in an episode of The Chaise Lounge, a podcast dedicated to successful businesses in the industry. While Pardoe’s education started in graphic design, her knowledge in that field has only contributed to her interior design business. Pardoe Interiors has caught the attention of several publications, including Baltimore Magazine, Chesapeake Home + Living, Howard, the Baltimore Sun, and the Washington Post. She also writes the Her Decor column found in HerMind magazine. Pardoe Interiors clients espouse the principal’s creative problem solving and organizational skills.

“My designs are inspired by my clients’ treasures, aspirations, lifestyles, and goals. My mission is to make my clients’ dreams come true. It’s my motivation and what drives me. It is truly an honor and a joy to help clients realize their dreams.” – April Force Pardoe

Featured Projects

Pardoe’s design of the Bluebell Way family room, for a couple in Laurel, was based around the couples’ extensive art collection. She designed a custom built-in, with custom lighting, to best feature their treasures. The warm space combines 8 different fabrics to create a cozy and collected room that meets the clients’ needs — from evenings by the fire to hosting large family gatherings. In a classic Baltimore home in Roland Park, Pardoe’s living room design for Overhill Road included creating two distinct seating areas. The spaces — one for the couple to enjoy cocktails and conversation and one for kicking your feet up on game day and movie nights — work well together to serve their needs. Art from the couple’s family and travels make the room theirs and offer many conversation starters.

Karen Renee Interior Design, Inc.

Karen Osborne, CID, NCIDQ
Stephanie Simmons, Allied ASID
Linda Hartman, Allied ASID

ASID Excellence in Design Award,
Brava! Award ,
MAX Awards
Annapolis Home Magazine’s Builder & Fine Design Awards
Home & Design 100 Top Designers 2018
Best of Annapolis 2018


540 Baltimore Annapolis Boulevard, Suite C, Severna Park, MD 21146

About Karen Renee Interior Design, Inc.

Karen Osborne, the president of this Maryland firm, possesses a decorated resume. Ms. Osborne holds an NCIDQ (National Council for Interior Design Qualification) and well as CID (Certified Interior Designer) status. She is the winner of numerous awards such as an ASID (American Society of Interior Designers) Maryland Chapter Excellence in Design award and a Smart CEO Magazine’s Brava! award, as well as Entrepreneur Exchange’s Entrepreneur of the Year. The team at Karen Renee Interior Design, Inc. is likewise heavily recognized. They have won MAX Awards from the Maryland Building Industry Association, recognized as Best Interior Design Firm in the Best of Annapolis in What’s Up? Annapolis over several years, selected as Home & Design magazine’s 100 Top Designers and featured in Annapolis Home magazine’s for winning the Builder & Fine Design Awards First Place Interior Design Excellence for Whole House Design. The Karen Renee Interior Design team offers residential, model home merchandising, commercial, and sorority interior design. Outside of leading Karen Renee, Osborne looks to the future of the industry and that of Maryland and beyond. Besides mentoring interior design student interns, she has led several projects including “Chesapeake Bay for Kids,” which allowed 200 impoverished school children to participate in Chesapeake Bay Foundation and Maryland Science Center programs and “Cailyn’s Promise” where she raised money to open a medical clinic in Uganda providing affordable health care to Kayirikiti Village.

Featured Projects

One of the goals of the designers at Karen Renee Interior Design is to make sure their work reflects the taste and personality of the client. As such, the only consistent feature between projects is the feeling of relaxation and comfortableness exuded by the final designs. In a project completed last year dubbed Casual Elegance, the Karen Renee team used abundant light, the occasional blue, and minimal furnishings to great effect. A large, globe-like light fixture hangs above the dining room table, creating a sacred space. Deep blue, upholstered chairs invite family members and guests to linger at the table a little longer. “The Nantucket” is also a space which utilizes a lot of natural light situated on a woody lot. To make the home feel naturally warm and inviting, a soft palette of grays and neutrals were used throughout to set the stage for the design choices of the home. Thus, the light is suffused through the space without making it glaring. An intentional selection of organic shapes, natural finishes and soft, comfortable furnishings make the space look bigger and bring the outdoors in.

Millbrook Circle Interior Design

Liz Dickson

Chesapeake Home Interior Design Competition Winner,
Home & Designs 100 Top Designers

6015 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21212

About Millbrook Circle Interior Design

Millbrook Circle’s designs are described as fresh and functional, although that doesn’t keep them from displaying the luxury present in Charm City’s interior design scene. The Baltimore-based interior design firm is owned by Liz Dickson, who HGTV viewers might remember from House Hunters Renovation. Her projects have also been seen on the channel’s What’s My House Worth? and The List. When her work isn’t in front of the camera, it can also be found in Baltimore Magazine, the Baltimore Sun, Chesapeake Home & Living, and the Huffington Post. Under her leadership, the Millbrook Circle team has been a winner of the Chesapeake Home Interior Design Competition for four years and named Home & Designs 100 Top Designers in 2016. Outside of residential interiors, Millbrook Circle has added private clubs, commercial spaces, renovations, and new homes to their resume.

Featured Projects

Dickson’s portfolio shows that the team can work with any color and style, and not only be successful with the design, but also win awards for it. To start, we’ll look at Dickson’s featured design in House Hunters Renovation. For the Bethesda couple, she planned an open kitchen and a master bedroom. Work included relocating a powder room to open up the kitchen, which led to structural issues that were skillfully resolved by the team. The final result was painted in a neutral, room-enlarging color palette. The room Dickson designed for the 2015 Baltimore Symphony Decorator’s Show House is a study in muted pinks and green tones that cost between $7,500 to $10M to create. Dickson fills empty space with fun decorations like a columns of uniquely-shaped mirrors, green candles in silver lanterns, and assorted artwork over the threshold in a way that doesn’t feel kitschy or overbearing. The design took home an ASID/Home & Design Magazine award that year.

Patrick Sutton Interior Design

Patrick Sutton

John Russell Pop Award for Interior Design,
AIA Design Awards

1000 Light Street, Baltimore, MD 21230

About Patrick Sutton Interior Design

Patrick Sutton was raised by a travel journalist and a fashion model in New York. As the future architect puts it, he has “travel in his blood.” His childhood travels would later inform the designs of Sutton Interior. There is elegance, romance, and luxury to be found in the designer’s work, and his particular aesthetic has resonated with those who view his work. Just this year alone, Sutton has been featured in Elle Decor, In Style, the Baltimore Business Journal, Architectural Digest, the Baltimore Sun, Baltimore Style, and the Washingtonian. Sutton also has a John Russell Pop Award for Interior Design and five Design Awards from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) under his belt. He has designed Baltimore’s restaurants, distilleries, hotels, and luxury homes. He’s seen the city rise from its ashes and take flight into the resurgence it’s undergoing today. He, in short, knows the direction Baltimore is steering towards.

Featured Projects

In designing the interiors of the Sagamore Pendry hotel in Baltimore, Sutton discovered a quality of the hotel that he calls “gritty luxury.” Meaning, beneath the opulence of Sutton’s design, Baltimore’s industrial history is alive and breathing. The central rooms are glitzy and chic, and yet wrought iron hides at the edges. There is green vegetation, but there is also unfeeling concrete. The bar tops seem to glow from within, and the bar stools sit side by side as if in a factory line. The hotel would go on to earn rave reviews from the Baltimore Sun and the New York Times. Sutton’s residential work is not without the obvious hand of its creator. The texture of the walls and the ceiling in the Country House give the dining area a timeless quality, while the rest of the space polishes it and makes it shine. Sturdy antique furniture throughout the home and the canopy over the bed are just a couple of the design elements that make this home look classic.

Rita St. Clair Associates

Rita St. Clair

AIA Baltimore Outstanding Design Achievement Award for Design Excellence,
ASID Maryland Designer of the Year,
Washington Design Center Hall of Fame Award

1009 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21201

About Rita St. Clair Associates

Located just down the street from Millbrook Circle is the firm at the top of the “city of neighborhood’s” interior designers. Rita St. Clair’s design philosophy is summarized in three verbs: personalize, provide, and perfect. The Baltimore design firm is an establishment of the city, having been founded in 1968 by Rita St. Clair. She was educated at the University of Iowa, with a BFA in Art History, and her graduate studies would later take her to the Parsons School of Design in New York and Paris, and then the Museum des Arts Decoratif in Paris. St. Clair, a lover of the Art Nouveau and Art Deco styles, also acted as the president of the ASID. She has been recognized by multiple AIA chapters, multiple ASID chapters, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Hardwood Institute, and the Washington Design Center. She’s been written about in the Baltimore Sun, Chesapeake Home, and Style. She held an auction of her working collection earlier this year, which featured items from around the globe.

Featured Projects

Over the course of her 50-year career, St. Clair has found success taking on both residential and commercial projects from companies that are household names to us today. One of the many designs St. Clair has completed was for Baltimore City Hall. The Neo-Baroque structure was erected in 1875 by the architect George Aloysius Frederick. Over a hundred years later, it would be renovated by Rita St. Clair. She worked alongside other big architects in the city, and it took them two years to complete. The project’s costs came to total $10.5M. Another extravagant project included in St. Clair’s portfolio is the Palmer House Hilton. With its light-lined walls, golden accents, painted murals, and glowing chandeliers, the design almost looks otherworldly. Here, St. Clair works with shapes and patterns to create magnificent, large spaces that follow eye-catching patterns when looked at from afar, and provide intricate detailing when viewed up close.

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