Instagram influencer Paola Roder is known as the “Do It Yourself Queen of Color” for her take on hippie bohemian glamour. Along with financial manager husband Jeff, they moved a year ago to Johns Creek from King of Prussia, Pa.
“Our home is Mid-Century Modern,” Paola said. “We love the architectural lines, tall and coffered ceilings, and floor-to-ceiling windows that give a sense of openness and brightness. I love that our whole first floor is curtain-free. Some people like to be “safe” with design. I prefer to be ambitious and different, and (laughing) pastels scare me.”
Admiringly, Jeff embellished, “Paola is a very talented designer. Her projects are bold, but tasteful. Paola’s talent is to make a space lively. She has the vision to see the final product, good judgment and realism in terms of designing and changing a space. Some spaces are just unappealing, not functional. Paola knows how to improve it by making a major change like taking down a wall. She can also see when a space can be transformed with modest effort and cost.”
Take a roller coaster ride in the joyous and stimulating Roder home:
Marcia: What is your training?
Paola: I’m actually a graphic designer. I went to an arts conservatory in Cali, Colombia, where I completed a five-year graphic design program. I’m more of an interiors enthusiast as I started using my home as a canvas to apply some of my knowledge to create unique spaces.
Marcia: How would you describe your approach?
Paola: I have a very unique and different style. I might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I like to be different and make a statement. One of my IG followers described it as: “Roder has a lot of pop art influences, but also a hip urban feel, a bit of kitsch and psychedelia.” I’m definitely a maximalist!
Marcia: What are some of your most unusual pieces?
Paola: We have a family heirloom that we absolutely love, a coffee table of hand-painted tiles from Israel. It is a MCM table that fits perfectly with our decor.
We like to add humor to our decor so there is an old phone by the entrance next to a cassette and a diskette resembling a “from the past” corner.
Marcia: Elaborate on your collections.
Paola: We focus on original art from new indie artists, mostly pop art like “Glitter Buddha” by Colombian Artist Juan Melo from his “Gente Brillante” (Sparkly People) Series, “Gay Gator” by Atlanta artist Liz Haywood, “Psychedelic Parrot” by Philadelphia artist Natalie Flor Negron, and the David Bowie clock “Two Face Twins” from the U.K.
Marcia: Describe your decor.
Paola: All our furniture is mid-century modern. I love bold colors with clean, simple lines, the honest use of materials. That generally does not include decorative embellishments.
My signature element in my own designs is black and white stripes, which are integrated in all of my room designs along with bold, bright colors.
A big part of why I am attracted to bold colors is my Latin and Colombian heritage.
I try not to worry about trends and just go with my gut. I started this journey experimenting with murals like a black and white striped wall last year. I transformed my laundry room with a graphic mural. I love the urban feel that it gives to the space. My dream is to paint other walls with cool designs.
Marcia: This kitchen is so contrastingly calm.
Paola: Our kitchen is not on Instagram because it is gray and won’t perform well on there. It’s a beautiful, spacious kitchen, but changes are on the way color-wise. I have been drawing some mock-ups of what I want there. We are vegans and love Indian food and Ethiopian cuisine. Jeff is my sous chef.
Marcia: How do the pups fit in?
Paola: Our two large goldendoodles have free range of the home, which is dog friendly because they have space to move safely within. Kali is the Indian goddess of creation and destruction, and Lakshmi is the goddess of beauty and wellness.
Marcia: Last word.
Jeff: My home makes me happy and grateful. I love the architecture, Paola’s interior transformation, the open space, and the neighborhood setting. While some have cabin fever being cooped up all of these months due to the virus, I am happy as a clam to be largely confined in this house.
My favorite area is the sunroom with large windows, looking out on a yard with deer and wildlife adjacent to the eating area. And, I enjoy eating!
Paola: Atlanta is a vibrant, different and colorful backdrop for engaging in the world around us. I love how the arts here are a catalyst and an incredible part of connecting communities.
As an avid jogger, now during COVID, I created a virtual running club from all over the world where we challenge running for 40 days – at least a mile a day. Currently 45 runners are on our page @roderroadrunners.
Marcia: Midtown and Soho meet Johns Creek right here.