down2earth Interior Design - tea with tara - tara headshot

Tea with Tara: Meet Operations Manager Tara

Let me introduce…myself! I’m the newest member of the down2earth Interior Design team and probably the first person you hear from after submitting your Talk to Us form on our website. One of my roles is to be the the liaison between new client inquiries and the design team, which is truly a pleasure. As with the design team, I’ve answered a series of questions (yes, over a cup of tea) that hopefully pique your interest, and at the very least, shed some light on the person behind the picture.

Describe your perfect day.

Waking naturally, without an alarm, in a London hotel with a view of the Tower Bridge. How’s that for specific? A lazy breakfast to prepare for a long day of walking would hit the spot. Next, a visit to the V & A Museum would be the ideal way to kick off my adventures. Instead of lunch, it’s undoubtedly tea at Fortnum & Mason with my best friend, Janet. I’m a snacker at heart, so the concept of little sandwiches and pastries makes me very happy. Since no ‘perfect day’ would be complete without my husband and son, I’d love to catch up with them for a bit of shopping and then swing by a favorite bakery, Peggy Porschen, for a cupcake and some hot chocolate. A family dinner followed by the theater would be a fantastic way to wrap up the day.

down2earth Interior Design - Tea with Tara - Peggy Porschen

Photo: Courtesy of Tara Kingsley

Do you have a hobby or passion outside the world of interiors?

Before the pandemic I played a lot of tennis. My husband and I were a mixed doubles team which was a blast. We’d never played a sport together before this and it was a great way to bond over something that wasn’t related to managing the household. We just had fun, whether we played well or terribly. Maybe I’ll get back to it this summer, although I’ve been eager to try something new, like golf. I also really enjoy volunteering for a local food cupboard. Lastly, I love, love, love baking! It relaxes me and the house smells heavenly. I get this from my mom, who baked my birthday cake every year and even made donuts from scratch. One of my best childhood memories is the scent of warm cinnamon sugar wafting through the house on donut day.

down2earth Interior Design - tea with tara- baking ingredients

Photo: Anshu A on Unsplash

How does travel (near or far) influence your lifestyle and/or work?

To me, travel is an education. It informs so much of what I do. How I connect with others (be it at work or socially), how I decorate my home and how I spend my free time. I find sharing travel stories a great way to get to know other people. I love learning from others’ travel experiences and collecting recommendations for future trips. There are various treasures around my home that I’ve picked up on my travels. A favorite is a crystal I bought in Sedona 6 years ago that I move around my dresser as the mood strikes. It holds such happy memories of time well spent.

down2earth Interior Design - tea with tara - crystal

Photo: Courtesy of Tara Kingsley

Amsterdam made quite an impression on me, with all that glorious architecture and the charming canals. Any chance to watch a movie or read a book in which it’s the backdrop, I’m game.

down2earth Interior Design - tea with tara - amsterdam canal tour

Canal Tour, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Photo: Courtesy of Tara Kingsley

If you weren’t designing spaces, what else would you be doing?

As the operations manager for d2e, I don’t design spaces, but, if I wasn’t working for an interior design firm, I’ve always thought that I’d like to be a jeweler or a gemologist. I’m fascinated by the origins of gems and interested in what systems are in place to mine and trade in the most ethical way.

down2earth Interior Design - tea with tara - gemstone

Photo by Sabrianna on Unsplash

Can you share a personal goal or hope for your future?

I’d like to learn a second language. I haven’t decided which one yet, but Spanish and Italian are front runners. I’d also love to learn calligraphy. It seems like an art form that I actually have a shot at mastering.

We all can’t wait for the world to fully open up again. When that day comes, where would you go, if money and time were no object?

Without a doubt, Italy! I’ve been longing to go for ages. I’m not sure I have to make a case for it, do I? What’s not to love? Pizza, pasta, gelato, fresh seafood, and lemons plucked straight from the tree above. There is so much natural beauty to explore, as well as the architecture and art. It’s calling my name.

down2earth Interior Design - tea with tara - naples

Naples, Italy
Photo: Giannluca Cinnante on Unsplash

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