Living Locally   /   Home & Garden

SAMM European Design breathes new life into homes

Eclectic, eco-friendly design

After moving on from a lengthy career in marine biology, Swantje Macke-Monteiro married her love of environmentalism with her love of interior decorating to create SAMM European Design.

“I was always into decorating,” she says. “Apparently as a little girl, I used to rearrange the furniture, pictures, and even cutlery in other people’s houses. It was in my blood.”

As a “green decorating and interior re-design” consultant, Swantje draws inspiration for interior design from nature – using eco-friendly and natural materials, such as paints and furniture. She encourages clients to work with what they have to re-design their living spaces and works hard to source anything she does have to buy from local, vintage, or second-hand shops.

Swantje’s design approach is also influenced by her background, having lived across Europe from England to the Canary Islands and Germany before settling in Canada. “I definitely consider my style eclectic,” she says.

“I noticed when we moved to Canada in 2005 that the tastes are quite different,” she says. “The colour palettes are much darker here, and there isn’t nearly as much antique furniture or candles being used.”

Having spent nearly 15 years in the interior design industry, Swantje takes the time to listen to her clients’ needs and stick to them. “If you want a purple-and-black living room, that’s what I will give you.” Where possible, she will impart her environmental wisdom to help their living spaces be comfortable and sustainable for years to come.

“It’s a gentle process,” she says.


  1. Looking to redesign your home? Click here to get in touch with SAMM European Design.
  2. Learn more about Swantje’s services here – from colour consultation to personalized shopping.
  3. Connect with SAMM European Design on Facebook and LinkedIn.
  4. Check out SAMM European Design’s Sustainability Profile on the REAP directory.