Podcast, Ep. 151: designer Courtney McLeod

New York interior designer Courtney McLeod of Right Meets Left Interior Design

Let’s bring some joy and color into our week with Courtney McLeod, the designer behind Right Meets Left Interiors. Known for her beautiful and fun yet sophisticated body of work, Courtney is a true pro at using color to create joy and personality in her clients’ homes. She talks with us about taking risks in business and in design, ways that we can start to incorporate more color in our design, and how to use color in small spaces.

What You’ll Hear On This Episode:

  • Trials and triumphs about new art lighting up our homes, a doctor’s visit for the pup, and great solutions for those unorganized beach towels. 
  • How Courtney’s background of business and the finance industry mixes with her artistic side to create a perfect balance of mixing creativity with the analytical.
  • Courtney’s process at Right Meets Left Design is all about listening to her clients and interpreting their desires and dreams into what is doable for their particular situation, taste, and budget.
  • Color doesn’t always have to be loud, but it can be just as interesting when it is soft.
  • Having a contrast of shapes creates an interesting and engaging space, so it’s not all about going all angular or all circular.
  • Ways we can work with color, even if it intimidates us. Also, using color in small spaces and busting the myth that you can’t use bold color in a small space.
  • Do what feels good for you when it comes to color and pieces that you love. Don’t worry about what anyone else thinks, or if you aren’t able to use it in your home just yet – you will one day!
  • The inspiration behind Courtney’s super cute designs in both New Orleans and Antiqua.
  • Fun and imaginative ideas for kids rooms that are interactive and great to stand the test of time including a comic book mural wall.

New Jersey condo designed by Courtney McLeod with neutral color palette and interesting shapesDecorating Dilemma:

Hello ladies,

I’m one of your original fans! Thanks to your advice I chose the lovely pendant lights above my kitchen island. Also, thanks to your guests I tiled the backsplash to the ceiling, made sure there was a place for all my kitchen items and steered clear away from granite! Unfortunately, I had ordered my appliances when one of your guests said to always cover the dishwasher. Oh well.

Here’s the dilemma: I have a “breakfast area” approximately 14’x12’ between kitchen and dining room that I need to furnish. We are building some bookshelves to house the tv and I want an oval tulip table.  Instead of a banquet, I really want an Eton sofa.  My husband thinks Eton will sit too low to use with the tulip table. What do you think? Can I rig Eton to sit a bit higher? Also, I am thinking of a great pendant above the table. Please let me know your thoughts. I am sending pics of kitchen, the empty breakfast room (Karen, the vacuum is there to give you a sense o scale 😏) and my dining room with my beautiful Chianni dining room table. These three room all run tougher.

You guys are so much Fun and I appreciate your approach with guests to always ask for practical advice. Oh, and thank you for reading my “review” on air during your 100 anniversary!


The tile to the ceiling is one of our favorite tricks, so we are glad you did that, and your space already has incredible bones and structure! It looks like you already have an area for counter stools in the kitchen and a really great dining area, so maybe make the center section more of a seating area and snacking area. We would recommend a tight back bench so you don’t get the squishiness when you sit on it and  you can have an upright feel. Check out our banquette sofas, and one that was skirted would add some softness with a classic dining table look. For a chandelier, something smaller and undersized that looked like a little jewel would be super cool.

As I was listening to Alexandra K’s interview, I realized, after applauding myself for my antique brown table, that all of my chairs were also antique and brown. I’m on a tight budget because we are paying back student loans, but do you have any suggestions for a temporary fix? Would painting do anything for them? Or should I just hold off until I can afford new chairs? if so, which chairs would you suggest? They definitely need reupholstering. I love the chartreuse velvet (4 have a chartreuse cushion and the other 4 have a terrible (but easily unnoticed) white and beige print). These pictures are fromZillow since we’re planning to move but I do want to keep this table and chairs (purchased from EBTH). Please ignore the heinous chandelier. Thanks!!


Your pieces have great lines, and we do agree that the brown feels a bit heavy. The two head chairs with chartreuse cushions would be excellent as white, making the cushions pop even more. Check out the Ballard chair options here, If you do decide to go for print, pick a print where your accent color is that smallest color in that print. You will be surprised how the solid will pair with the print.

Mentioned In This Episode:

Please send in your questions so we can answer them on our next episode! And of course, subscribe to the podcast in iTunes so you never miss an episode. You can always check back here to see new episodes, but if you subscribe, it’ll automatically download to your phone.

Happy Decorating!

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Caroline McDonald

Caroline lives for pairing together patterns, mixing furniture styles, and oogling over our newest furniture pieces. As you can imagine, her little 1920's craftsman is in a constant state of flux. Here on How to Decorate, it's her goal to help you turn your home into your own little slice of paradise.


  1. Reply


    October 2, 2020

    Love and learn so much from your podcast! Have been working my way back through those I’ve missed over the summer and listened to your interview with Courtney McLeod yesterday (episode 151). Love her. Love her confidence! Anyway, a chair she picked up at a trade flea market was mentioned. If I understood correctly, the cushion was painted. Couldn’t find a picture. Do you have one to share? I need the inspiration! Thanks !

  2. Reply


    September 2, 2020

    It’s great. This post helps and, your ideas were unique. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Reply

    Susan McElrafth

    August 7, 2020

    Thank you so much for adding this function back!


  4. Reply

    Susan McElrafth

    July 30, 2020

    Up until episode 150, I could listen to the podcast from your website by scrolling down under the picture of the guest & clicking on the button next to the pink chair. As of episode 150, the pink chair & listen button are gone.

    Is there something I am missing?

    I really enjoy your podcasts and hope I can still listen in via your website (on my laptop).

    • Reply

      Caroline McDonald

      July 31, 2020

      I am so sorry! I just added the podcast player into the episode. It completely slipped my mind when I was prepping the episode, but it’s in there now.
      Thank you for listening and letting me know that it wasn’t in there!