Having recently made her debut on Architectural Digest‘s exclusive AD100 list, Hadley Wiggins is a new name to know in the design world. However, this young talent isn’t exactly new to the scene: Those in the know have been marveling over her meticulous, artistic work on the historic homes of Long Island’s North Fork for years. Now, she’s reaching a wider audience with projects that are chic, uniquely elegant, and delectably refined.

We spoke with Hadley about her nuanced style, her passion for historic renovations, and her love of vintage and antique finds. See what she had to say below, and be sure to shop a curation of her one-of-a-kind Chairish favorites.

Shop Hadley Wiggins’s Chairish Favorites >>>

Hadley Wiggins
Hadley Wiggins. Photo: Tim Lenz

Your designs are timeless, playful, and sophisticated. How did you develop your personal style?

What a kind description—I’ll take it! I find the most beautiful spaces are hard to describe; no one style reference comes to mind. There’s a subtle harmony you can’t quite articulate but you feel it’s there. I try to avoid the obvious and seek out the unexpected but satisfying pairing or collection of goods and colors. I try to stay open, experiment a lot, and work hard to maintain a high threshold for risk.

Aside from your design career, you have an art history background from studying at Sarah Lawrence College. How has your knowledge of art history influenced your taste?

Art history introduced me to a way of considering style, its expression through fine art, and what it tells us about the time and context in which it was created. Today, I find that furniture offers its own fascinating glimpse into the value structures and ingenuity of any given time. On some level, I am thinking about what a piece of furniture is saying, the lifestyle it represents, and the feeling it brings to a room. My studies and the many aesthetics it brought into my consciousness have most definitely influenced my work today.

You have mentioned before that you try to avoid trends. Tell us what you mean by that.

I am personally drawn to timeless interiors and feel strongly that furnishings should last and schemes should endure. Engaging a firm to design your interior is no small undertaking, and it’s an investment I don’t take lightly. My goal is to create timeless spaces that can accept the growth of a family and the evolution of a lifestyle. Trends will date a space and eventually they turn stale, in need of an overhaul. Change will come to all interiors but my hope is that our work will be added to and developed, versus being ripped out and thrown away with a tired and overly defined aesthetic we’re sick of seeing.

Photo: Pernille Loof / The Trunk Archive

You have a passion for vintage shopping, which is so beautifully incorporated into your projects. How do you strike the balance between vintage and more contemporary, modern pieces?

There are no hard and fast rules, but I am often looking for the subtle common thread, the shared tonal relationships, the echoes of a shape or line. Every object in a room can be of a different era, some being newly fabricated, but the goal is to avoid competition—no one thing should fight against the other. It’s subtle, but I find if you stay connected to what you actually like, truly, not what you think is cool or “correct,” a space will come together because it is authentic to you. Harmony is achieved by a clear and confident point of view. A room can be as dynamic as the human character—-someone with great personal style doesn’t wear the same outfit every day but as a collection, everything in their wardrobe looks like “them”—unforced and true.

Many of the homes you have renovated in Connecticut and New York have been historic. What is your favorite part about renovating homes that have such a rich history?

Original detail and patina can make for easier work. New spaces or those that have been stripped of their roots pose challenges you have to solve for, interest and dimension you have to add back. An old home with intact detail offers authentic inspiration and direction for a project. New business inquiries involving historical structures always stand out! Clients who have purchased a home in response to its original detail are a great fit for our approach—I’ll exhaust all avenues to salvage an original detail, and more and more I find clients are interested in doing the same. You can’t create “original,” and I appreciate those individuals who value its ever-increasing rarity.

What would be a dream project for you? What’s something you’ve always wanted to take on, whether it’s a particular type of space to design or a place?

Dream project inquiry involves words like “it’s basically a ruin but we want to save it.” My husband is Italian and I’m lucky to spend a lot of time there visiting family and exploring the region. America offers incredible opportunities to step back a few hundred years into the past. Europe is another story, another kind of time travel. I’ll be jumping on a plane for the first Tuscan villa that comes my way.

Hadley Wiggins
Photo: Tim Lenz

On Chairish & Vintage Shopping…

What do you find most compelling about Chairish?

I search and shop Chairish every day. The offerings are so vast! We source every category but I find it is the one spot I go to to source smalls like art and objects. Much of our work is quite layered and requires a lot of stuff! I can fill a library of shelves on Chairish unlike anywhere else.

How does sustainability factor into your design choices and love of vintage?

There is a natural synergy between my taste for authentic, patinated goods and my dislike of waste. I don’t purchase antique and vintage items in an overt attempt to recycle per se; it is an extremely welcome byproduct, but I’d argue the majority of new goods available on the market can be found at better quality, price, and impact on the vintage market.

Are there any dream vintage/antique “gets” you wish you could have? What’s a dream piece for you?

Frankly, I’m not a snob about signed or named pieces. I care more about the specific markings of time and unique condition.

What are three of your favorite pieces on Chairish now?

I love this Dazor Swing Arm Brass Desk Lamp With White Reflector Shade; this Art Deco Metamorphic Expansion Dining Table; and this George III Mahogany and Leather Armchair.

Hadley Wiggins
Photo: Tim Lenz

Some Design Favorites…

Favorite way to create a statement-making moment in a room: 

Color! Drench it in color.

Favorite decorating “cheap thrill:” 

Folk art!

Favorite paint color: 

Elmira White

Favorite piece of decor in your home: 

An oil portrait of my father by California artist David Scott

Favorite designer or artist from the past you most often turn to for inspiration: 

Lorenzo Mongiardino

Favorite style icon: 

Jane Birkin

Best piece of career advice you’ve ever received: 

Be you.

Hadley Wiggins
Photo: Tim Lenz

Some Lifestyle Favorites…

Favorite vacation destination: 

The Dolomites 

Favorite hotel that’s inspired your work while traveling: 

The Singular, Porto Natales, Patagonia 

Favorite restaurant: 

Cafe Gitane

Favorite small museum: 

Pinacoteca di Brera in Milan

Favorite podcast: 

The Daily

Favorite hostess (or thank you) gift: 


Favorite flower: 


Favorite adult beverage: 

I don’t drink often, but on vacation my favorite is a Panache (or Bicicletta), half light beer / half Sprite. Try it!

Favorite way to unwind at home: 

I’d puzzle every night but I end up ruining my back leaning over the table! I read a ton of novels and look forward to getting back to one all day.

Lead image: Tim Lenz


File Under

March 14, 2023

Dennis Sarlo is the executive editor of Chairish and a lover of all things design-related. Prior to joining the team, he served as the executive editor of Dering Hall and was the first site director of Architectural Digest. He was also part of the founding team of travel startup Jetsetter. He lives in New York.