Skip Navigation Links

BIOGRAPHY LAURA Mc COY

Laura Mc Coy was born in the Midwest where she grew up in a small town on the banks of the Ohio River. Her federal style brick home came complete with a balcony and ghost. She loved the stately old homes of her neighborhood and spent long summer afternoons on the front porch of elderly friends listening to their stories of the past. Her father had a restored Model T Ford truck and took Laura and her friends for Sunday drives. One of her favorite things was to hear the calliope playing which announced the frequent visits of the historic river boat The Delta Queen. When the boat would tie up Laura was always among the first aboard to stroll her decks and visit the grand salon. The love of the past was part of her life from the beginning.

Laura’s family business was an interior design studio and art gallery located in a former historic bank building. She worked in that business from an early age and was exposed to all of the best high end sources for wallpaper, fabrics and furniture. She grew to young adulthood in this creative atmosphere where the beautiful colors, patterns and images excited her imagination and helped to feed her artistic talent.

When the time came for college she attended the University of Indiana at Bloomington where she studied Art, Interior Design and English Literature. Upon graduation with a BA she began work in her family business as an interior designer. While she enjoyed that career she was anxious to have a more hands-on role in the production of beautiful designs. Her opportunity presented itself when she interviewed for and accepted a job with a New Jersey based wallcovering company that had a design studio in Connecticut.

Laura started at the bottom of the wallcovering design business and worked her way up to the position of Stylist. As a result of her early experience and training she was styling lines of wallcovering within three years. She loved both the art and the technical side of the business and spent a lot of time supervising production at printing plants across the country. She worked on commercial wallcoverings, mid range residential product lines and finally high end wallpapers. Ultimately she was in charge of a famous historic document- inspired line and felt that she had found a home for her talents.

She grew to love the beautiful original wallpapers that she found in archives and old homes. However the more she learned about authentic historic design the less she saw of it in the high-end residential retail market. There were some fine old companies producing beautiful papers but upon inspection she found that they were reproducing a dress print and selling it as a period wallpaper design. Repeat sizes and paper widths were being altered from the document evidence to facilitate production. Colors were being dropped to increase profits. No one was interested in bothering with those custom clients who were looking for one room of paper that might never sell to the “mass market”. She wondered where the people who wanted to “really do it right” were going to find a source for accurately executed historic wallpapers? She decided that Laura Mc Coy Designs Inc. would be that source.

Laura started her company with a vision for truly custom service and the highest quality of wallpaper reproduction possible. She calls herself a “wallpaper archeologist” because she combines all of the available evidence which she uncovers in the process of her extensive research with her artistic talent and her vast experience to piece together the visual past and recreate historic interiors of distinction.

This winning combination has produced over 125 wallpapers for dozens of museum houses as well as private clients across the United States. She has further broadened her technical experience by working with six different types of printing in three different countries. She has styled wallpaper collections for Katzenbach & Warren (The Athenaeum of Philadelphia I and II). She has also worked as a special consultant for several well known companies including Scalamandré, Brunschwig & Fils and Thibaut. She has recently added the reproduction of carpet designs and fabrics to her list of custom services that she offers to her clients.

Laura Mc Coy’s work has won several awards including best product design award for CT ASID and the ASID Award for Excellence. Her work has been published in numerous periodicals including Preservation Magazine, Antiques Magazine, Antiques and Fine Arts and has been featured on television most notably on HGTV’s Old Homes Restored.

She speaks about the history of wallpaper design and production in general and her business in specific by request. Some of her speaking engagement venues have included Winterthur, The Cooper Hewitt, National Design Museum and Colonial Williamsburg.

After almost twenty years of designing in her studio in her vintage home in Connecticut, Laura has recently moved to her new home and business location in the woods of New Hampshire. She finds the quiet of the country very inspiring and has a new larger business facility ready to accomodate her growing archive of historic designs and to better serve her clientelle.

All content © 2019 Laura Mc Coy Designs, Inc.