Designer Spotlight: Caroline Hartwell Design

Atlanta-based interior designer prides herself on creating elevated, approachable spaces. Follow along as Caroline shares her story of inspiration, pursuing her dream and creating lasting, memorable homes.

Photo credit: Emily Followill Photographer

About the Designer:


I grew up in Greensboro, North Carolina and currently live in Atlanta with my husband, Hunter, and our black lab puppy, Olive.


In addition to design, I'm also passionate about cooking and travel. My husband and I actually spent three months in London last fall, which was a dream!

Photo credit: Emily Followill Photographer
Photo credit: Anna Routh Barzin

An Unconventional Route to Design


It was definitely not the typical path to becoming an interior designer!


I've always loved interior design, but when I was growing up, I never thought that I could pursue design as a career and certainly didn't know much about the industry. I studied business and math at UNC Chapel Hill and then worked in management consulting for my first job out of college.


After working in consulting for a few years, I knew that it wasn't a good fit. Working long hours at a job I didn't like made me think about what I'm passionate about and how I wanted to be spending my time.

Photo credit: Emily Followill Photographer

I decided to take a leap of faith, enrolled in design school, and started working part-time for a designer while I was in school. It was so scary to feel like I was starting over, but I loved it right from the start.


Looking back now, I feel so fortunate that I started my career in consulting because it provided me with skills that have been incredibly beneficial for working with clients and managing the details of a project.

Photo credit: Emily Followill Photographer

What Inspires You?


So many things! Antiques, artwork, architecture, travel, and other designers to name a few. I love pieces that tell a story and will often use a passed-down family antique or a cherished piece of art as the foundation of a room.

Photo credit: Emily Followill Photographer

How Would You Describe Your Style?


Refined, comfortable, and collected. I love mixing old with new and adding in unexpected elements to make a space feel personal and approachable.

Photo credit: Anna Routh Barzin

Give Us A Designer Tip!


I would recommend investing in a good framer.


Even if you don't have the budget to support a diverse art collection, a well-framed piece of art can completely elevate a space. It also allows you to be frugal and creative with the piece of art itself - whether it's a picture cut out of a coffee table book or a coaster from a favorite date spot.


I would also recommend collecting a few antique frames (try Ebay or Etsy!) to add soul.

Photo credit: Anna Routh Barzin

You're based in Atlanta. Do you also travel?


I work with clients all over! In addition to Atlanta-based projects, I'm also currently working on projects in Brooklyn, Jackson Hole, and North Carolina.

Photo credit: Emily Followill Photographer

For more inspiration and information about Caroline Hartwell Design, you can visit her website here and her Instagram page here.

Photo credit: Emily Followill Photographer