Updated: Aug 21, 2020
"Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say, and not giving a damn." - Gore Vidal
Join us as we step inside the beautifully layered home of punk rocker turned Portland interior designer, Max Humphrey. A master at mixing vintage treasures with modern spaces; Max takes ordinary rooms and transforms them into something truly spectacular! Take a peek inside this gorgeous abode and enjoy all of the exciting beauty this home has to share!
Artifact: How did you get into the world of designing interiors?
Max Humphrey: A million years ago in Los Angeles I was playing bass for a punk band that I had started with some friends and at the end of our last tour I had to get a real job again. After spending a few years on the road I had found a new interest in fixing up my apartment and 6 months in to a job search a lightbulb moment went off because I was sending all my time decorating my place instead of finding a job. I read up on the interior design industry and when I felt like I was ready I cold-called a local boutique design firm and begged for a job. I stuck around for over 10 years before leaving LA for Portland to start my own firm.
Artifact: What is the best part of being an interior designer?
Max: Spending other peoples money! As a compulsive shopper and lifelong vintage fanatic my job allows me to shop til I drop without actually draining my own bank account. And if I get lonely I can go to my client’s homes and visit all the treasures I’ve found them.
Artifact: Do you specialize in a certain era of home decor?
Max: It’s all about the mix for me but I tend to want to put the opposite style of furniture in to whatever era the home is. I wouldn’t necessarily fill a modern home with all modern furnishings or a more traditional home with only fancy stuff.
Artifact: What is the best item you've found for a client?
Max: Too hard to choose but vintage lighting is always a fun category and I’ve found some mid-century pottery table lamps out there that I still kick myself for not keeping.
Artifact: It's obvious you love to collect unique treasures! What is your most prized one?
Max: I bought a 1970s Gucci fine porcelain coffee service set at an auction years back that somehow flew under the radar of other bidders. I use it on special occasions. The coffee cups are the kind you can only feel cool drinking from if you stick your pinky out like some 11th century aristocrat.
Artifact: What are your top rules when adding (or taking away) pieces for your home?
Max: One rule is to not be sentimental about stuff. If I even have to think twice about buying something I don’t bother. I’ll know it if it’s something that has to come home with me. And If I do take anything away it’s more fun to give it to a friend then try and sell it.
Artifact: Where are your favorite vintage spots to shop in Portland?
Max: OTHER THAN ARTIFACT I shop for antique Moroccan rugs at Kat and Maouche for all my clients. I’m always finding treasures at City Home and I love driving out to Aurora to go to Aurora Mills Architectural Salvage.
Artifact: Are there any websites or blogs you are loving at the moment?
Max: No but I read a lot of retail catalogues. I like the pretty pictures and over the top styling. The new Schoolhouse Electric Catalogue rocks.
Artifact: What three songs describe you as a person?
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