Q&A with Miami Designer Maris Raffa

The designer talks all things texture and her tactics for incorporating it in the home


Let’s get right into it. What’s your approach to textures when it comes to interior design?

To effectively incorporate textures, it’s of prime importance to consider the sensory experience and visual impact they bring to a space. Texture adds depth, dimension, and tactile interest to a design, creating a dynamic and engaging environment, so balance is key.

What are your favorite textures to work with and why?

I appreciate natural materials like wood, stone, and leather for their warmth and organic feel. I value velvet and linen for their luxurious and tactile qualities.

What do you always keep in mind when it comes to materials in South Florida?

Our climate is known for its hot temperatures, high humidity levels, and frequent rain. When selecting textures, I like to choose materials that can withstand moisture and humidity, and that are heat-resistant so the material won’t absorb or retain heat, especially for outdoor spaces or areas exposed to direct sunlight. I also prioritize textures that are durable, easy to clean, and require minimal maintenance to ensure longevity and preserve the aesthetic appeal of the design.

Are there any types of textures you steer clear of?

I don’t like overly shiny or reflective surfaces like high-gloss finishes that can show fingerprints, scratch easily, and require frequent maintenance. Textures that are difficult to clean or maintain, such as shaggy or high-pile rugs, are not great for high-traffic areas or spaces where cleanliness is a priority.

What are your clients asking for in terms of materials and fabrics these days?

I’m getting a great deal of requests for natural materials like wood, marble, and other stones for their timelessness and elegant appeal. In terms of fabrics, clients are asking for velvet, leather, and silk when they want a sophisticated look. Industrial choices like concrete and metal are popular for those going for an edgy aesthetic.

What are your thoughts on area rugs?

I am for them. They add warmth, texture, and visual interest to a space, and they can define a seating area, anchor furniture, and provide comfort underfoot.

What’s your approach to textures and surfaces in the bedroom?

I like to use materials that create a comfortable and inviting space. I often rely on soft textiles such as linen and silk for bedding and curtains. I like wood for nightstands and dressers to bring a natural element into the room. And I opt for metal for decorative accents. It’s all about a harmonious environment.

What are the textures you like to surround yourself with at your own home and why?

I’ll consider anything that’s both functional and aesthetically pleasing. The goal is creating a welcoming space. 

Story Credits:


Text by Christopher Day

Interior Photography by Paul Vale

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