A quick chat with interior designer Audrey Sterk.
N MAGAZINE: What’s one thing most people don’t know about you?
STERK: I’m a drummer in a rock band. It is a fun hobby and a good outlet to clear your mind. I remember the first time I went on stage—I was petrified.
N MAGAZINE: Where and when do you get your best ideas?
STERK: Ideas come at unexpected times, which is why I love new experiences. But typically my clearest thinking time is the first couple of hours after waking up when the house is quiet. I keep a notebook next to me to stream thoughts, ideas, to-dos—whatever comes up. It is a way to clear the cobwebs. I am also a big fan of a comfortable garden spot with dappled sunlight—it is a simple pleasure.
N MAGAZINE: Which beach would you be on Nantucket?
STERK: Monomoy. I like the action of the vessels coming and going and the view of town is one of my favorites, especially at night. Beginning in 1995, I lived aboard a thirty-one-foot 1950 Richardson cabin cruiser moored near Monomoy Beach for the first four years of living on Nantucket. I loved hearing the foghorn at Brant Point Lighthouse and the lapping water on the boat hull at night.
STERK: A cup of coffee. Our NiSHA rescue dog Jack. My black hardbound notebook.
N MAGAZINE: What’s a piece of super-local information that summer visitors might appreciate?
STERK: We have some pretty amazing mountain biking here. It’s a great way to access much of the landscape and explore the natural beauty of the island.
N MAGAZINE: Tell us about one of your favorite design projects since starting your business in 1999?
STERK: That is a tough one. There are so many that I would consider my favorite for the time in my career. I am inspired and driven by the creative collaborative process and goals of the project. My favorite design projects are when the team of client, architect, builder and designer are working in synch and unison. My best day is to deliver a project with happy clients.
N MAGAZINE: Who do you consider your design hero and why?
STERK: It is hard to narrow down, but my real-life Nantucket design hero is Vladimir Kagan. I adored that man and loved visiting with him and talking about the aspects of good design. He had a fond sensitivity and curiosity for nature and translating the essence into his furniture designs. It was a blessing to have known him and it shaped me as a designer.
N MAGAZINE: How can someone change the look and feel of an entire room for under $100?
STERK: Change the wall color. A simple color shift can change the mood and look of a space with instant gratification. Try a color you might not try.
N MAGAZINE: If you could change anything about the island, what would it be?
STERK: It is pretty perfect to me. But being a night owl, it would be great to be able to get something you needed late at night.
N MAGAZINE: What did you want to be when you grew up?
STERK: When I was a child, my parents brought us to many theater performances, which is where my love of musicals was born. And I really thought I was going to be a Hollywood movie star!