Trenell McCauley CEO of the Award-Winning Luxury Interior Design Company Serenity by Trenell


( ENSPIRE She Did That ) Serenity by Trenell Interview

ENSPIRE Contributor: Aiyanna Hawkins

CEO & luxury interior designer Trenell McCauley will be sharing her expertise at the 2023 Maryland Fall Home & Garden + Craft Show Exhibition at the Timonium Fairgrounds in Maryland. Attendees will get to network and connect with the head CEO of Serenity Interiors and learn all about her luxury design experience. As a visionary entrepreneur, McCauley runs her business with passion and devotion. Her love for design and styling began at a young age, and she has only grown to love it more. 

As a Prince George’s County native, Serenity Interiors by Trenell was founded in February 2019 with the support of her husband and daughter. Now, Trenell found her love for decorating homes as she began to finally pursue her dreams in luxury interior design! With her style being a mix of bold color and modern contemporary, Trenell believes each room should represent a person’s personality before a word is spoken. Her company specializes in innovative solutions, and luxury spaces to create a unique and eccentric room for each client.

Trenell McCauley, CEO of Serenity Interiors by Trenell, Her Award-Winning Luxury Interior Design Company, in All White

Photographer Credit: All About Your Brand

With her passion never fading, Trenell McCauley is inspiring to many designers young and old. Her extensive experience shows her never-ending love for her profession. From a young age, McCauley always knew she wanted to do styling and design, and the sparkle returned to her eyes as she was finally pursuing what she’d always loved to do.

We had the honor of interviewing Trenell McCauley about her passion for her company and her love for luxury interior Design.

Stunning Luxury Interior Design from Trenell McCauley, CEO of Serenity Interiors by Trenell, Her Award-Winning Luxury Interior Design Company

Photographer Credit:
Ro Moreno
(Capture The Moment Photography by Ro, LLC)

What was the hardest thing about getting into the interior design industry? 

The hardest thing about getting into the interior design industry was taking the first steps to enter the industry. I owned a very successful yet stressful business in the past and I didn’t want to repeat the same business practices where I took such great care of the business but didn’t take great care of myself, which turned out to have an adverse impact on my health. After the strong encouragement of my husband and daughter along with establishing a plan of self-care, I pushed through the fear of returning to entrepreneurship, which ultimately landed me in the industry that I have always loved, interior design.

Can you describe your design style? 

My design style is Modern/Glam with a touch of Bold 

How did you come to find your own aesthetic? 

I found my own aesthetic by way of my grandmother who was a trendsetter and far beyond the design and fashion style you would normally see in the 80’s and 90’s. She always taught me to be classy and that if your shoes and purse are of quality, everything else will fall into place. With that in mind, I translated that practice into designing a room. Your sofa and chairs, light fixtures, and walls (smooth with good paint or wallpaper) should always be of quality, everything else will fall into place.

What do you think sets you apart from other interior designers?

 The major thing that sets me apart from other designers is my ability to manage projects including budget management. I have over 20 years of experience managing projects and multi-million dollar budget management.

Walk me through your portfolio, what is a project you are particularly proud of?

I am particularly proud of the project we completed in Washington, DC for a young man who inherited a home from his grandparents. The house was stuck in the 60s and 70s. It had polyurethane on the walls and floors and there were 3 different floors on the main level. The house had walls painted in a bright green color and there was a fireplace that was hand built that turned out to be a fire hazard. All the furniture was from the 60s and 70s and had plastic covers. We were tasked with revamping the main level into a space that a mid-30-year-old man would love to call home. 

What were some challenges or steps in the design process that led it to be a successful project?

 We faced so many challenges such as having to use a special technique to remove the polyurethane from the walls, doors, and floors. The only way to properly do it and keep the integrity of the structure and character of the home was to remove the polyurethane by hand. Also, we had to decide which of the 3 kinds of floors we wanted to run throughout the home rather than pulling up all the floors which could’ve been very costly. The Dining Room floor was the only floor that didn’t have polyurethane and looked like it was installed within the last few years; therefore, we matched the type of flooring from the Dining Room and ran it through the rest of the house, which included buffing and staining. In addition, because the home was much older, there wasn’t any central air conditioning, and the home had radiator heat; therefore, we had to be sure that the type of floor we used could withstand the air quality and not separate and crack throughout. Last, the home had extra-large windows and there were radiators under the windows; we decided it would be best to have custom blinds rather than curtains.

Where do you get your inspiration from, any specific stylists or designers in particular? 

I am constantly watching trends via Home and Garden, HGTV, and a handful of other designers such as Justin Q. Williams, Michele Boyd, Carmeon Hamilton, and Erika Ward.

What do you enjoy most about your profession?

 I most enjoy the transformation that I’m able to create for my clients by putting a smile on their faces. Everyone deserves Serenity in their home because their home is their sanctuary; therefore, Serenity in a home should not be compromised.

How do you go about collaborating with others on projects, or do you mainly work alone? 

My collaboration with General Contractors is very important. When I find a great contractor, I tend to stick with them because they understand my aesthetic and they are just as meticulous as I am. Most times, I’ve had the contractor work in my house to get an understanding of how they work and their team before I send them to one of my clients. They don’t know it’s an interview because I want to see their authentic personality and work product.

How did you start selling luxury candles? Has that always been something you were interested in one day doing? 

I’ve always had an affinity with candles and every time you walked into my home, I had a candle burning. In 2018, my aunt stayed with me, but the candles made my aunt sick because of a rare lung disease. Unfortunately, I had to stop burning candles. After extensive research and determination, I launched a 100% natural coconut soy candle line in September 2022 made with essential oil. To ensure the candles were exactly what I needed, my aunt tested the candles, and they didn’t make her sick. Because of the infusion of essential oils, the candles made her aunt feel more relaxed. We use all-natural ingredients such as a blend of coconut and soy wax, which burns longer and has less soot. All our candles are phthalate-free and non-toxic, our candles don’t include Parabens, or Prop 65 ingredients, all of which can be very harmful to a person’s health and well-being.

Trenell McCauley, the Amazing and Brilliant CEO of Serenity Interiors by Trenell, Her Award-Winning Luxury Interior Design Company, Enjoying Her Beautiful Luxury Interior Design

Photographer Credit:
Ro Moreno
(Capture The Moment Photography by Ro, LLC)

With Fall upon us, Trenell McCauley has 3 Fall luxury interior design tips to spruce up your home!

1) Decorate the Doorway

Decorate your doorway with some festive fall favorites, like a seasonal wreath. Your guests will feel welcomed from the moment they enter your home. 

Try a fun and festive style to keep things light-hearted or go for a more traditional look to emphasize the warmth with which you’re welcoming your guests. 

2) Bring In Warm Colors

Autumn is all about warmth. While the weather outside may be cooling off, the inside should be warm and comforting. 

Of course, you don’t have to change your more “permanent” fixtures, like your furniture and walls. Instead, focus on the accessories. 

Swap in some warm-toned curtains and tablecloths. Use red or orange throw pillows. Consider a warm-toned area rug. 

3) Light Your Space With Candles

Candles are key decor items in autumn and winter. It’s time to stock up on Serenity Interiors by Trenell Candles so you can have soothing candlelight all season long. 

Naturally, candles won’t be replacing all of your lights. However, they will add a comforting glow to your home. 

Use scented candles to enhance the cozy and warm autumn atmosphere as well. Warm and sweet scents, like cinnamon and vanilla, are perfect.

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