On December 15, 2021, Margalit Lankry arrived early at the spacious Old Carriage House in Monsey, the workspace of Shani Kaufman of ICO Design, to oversee the setup for the third Designers with Intention event. The loft’s exposed brick and wooden plank floors were the ideal setting for Margalit’s creative touch. The lighting and greenery, even the food and drinks, were works of art.
That evening, over a hundred female interior designers gathered to enjoy the buffet and treats, collect vendor giveaways such as paintbrush pens, miniature lamps and tape measures, and to trade stories. It was an unusual group of women, all in the same industry, coming together to give each other support in both their professional and personal lives.
The idea came to Margalit three years ago. “I used to pass by a site that another interior designer was working on and wonder why I hadn’t been hired for that project,” she says. “I knew that I wasn’t the only one feeling that way. I heard people say that interior designers are snobby and that each one tries to prove she’s better than the others, and it bothered me. I didn’t want to be like that. I called my father, who’s a very learned man, and told him that I didn’t know what to do about my feelings. He said, ‘A Jew isn’t allowed to be jealous. You need to take action to change that.’”