A Place of Her Own

Inside the eclectic lair of interior designer Saudah Saleem.

Janelle Diamond - January 2019

A Place of Her Own

Inside the eclectic lair of interior designer Saudah Saleem.

Janelle Diamond - January 2019


-Kate Grewal

TRANSPLANT: I’m from New York, but I’ve been in Baltimore for 19 years. My husband is from here. We bought this three-story house when we graduated from college.

WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR? We live in the Penn North neighborhood. There’s a lot of revitalization going on near Coppin State University. It’s an interesting time to live in the city.

THE START OF A CAREER: Interior design was sort of a hobby for me—I went to school for public relations and advertising. I would do stuff around the house like paint and redecorate. Friends would ask, “Have you ever thought about doing this for a living?” I started taking on projects from family members.

PERSONAL STYLE: I like classic lines and pops of color. But I also like vintage pieces. They tell a story—having a vintage piece in every room is important. It’s one-of-a-kind, it has a history, and it’s always a conversation starter.

THE PLAN: This room is a crazy story. It was actually my master bedroom. We live in an older home built in the 1920s. Storage space is almost nonexistent. No room has a closet. We used an armoire or would jerry-rig storage. But I realized, in the bedroom, you just sleep. So we moved into the guest room.

DESIGN WITHIN REACH: Our old bedroom is now my dressing room and office. I work in there. Plus that’s where I keep all my clothes, shoes, and jewelry. I love that the shoes are visible and almost become pieces of art.

THE FIRST PIECE: The sofa came from Ryan’s Relics in White Marsh on Belair Road. It was such a bold color, I thought, “This is going to be the piece. We’ll just design around it.”

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX: The cabinetry is from Ikea. I used bookcases, even though they’re not meant for shoes. But the shelving is adjustable, so it can be made taller for boots or shorter for flats.

OVER THE YEARS: I’ve had this room for about 10 years. I like the traditional style of cabinetry, that the rug is modern, the sofa is vintage, and I love how all those pieces can work together. I’m just grateful we have a space that allows it.





You May Also Like


Home & Living

This Must Be the Place

Despite all the hurdles, why do some families choose to settle down in the city?

Home & Living

Second Course

Chef Cindy Wolf is coming to a kitchen near you.

Home & Living

House Call

Nelle Somerville brings her own (hot pink) vision to a historic Dickeyville living room.


Home & Living

The House That Fire Built

A Roland Park blaze forever changes a family and their home.

The Chatter

Rat-Centric Real Estate Listing Puts Positive Spin on Baltimore Criticism

Dudley Roan Home Team places costumed rat in photos of latest listing.

Home & Living

War of the Roses

Here's how to avoid the frustrations of building a healthy rose garden.

Connect With Us

Most Read



Severe Flooding Plagues Neighborhoods Surrounding the Inner Harbor: Stark images of Harbor East and Fells Point arise on social media as area reckons with heavy rainfall.

What is the Likelihood of President Trump Coming to Baltimore?: With a House Republican conference and an invitation from Elijah Cummings, a presidential visit might be imminent.

Relics of Baltimore's Forgotten Punk Scene Showcased in New Metro Gallery Exhibit: Celebrated Summer Records owner Tony Pence curates fliers, photos, and music from 1977 to 1989.

Decades Night Club Documents Baltimore Club Music History at the Peale Center: We speak with curator Mia Loving about her latest exhibit, on view through this week.