A Visit with Patrick Mele in Greenwich

Text by Clinton Smith     Photography by Ellen McDermott

When designer Patrick Mele opened his eponymous design shop in his hometown of Greenwich three years ago this December, a veritable breath of fresh air washed over the city’s local design scene. Its cabinet-of-curiosities vibe melded with a colorful pop sensibility that created a unique point of view that has not gone unnoticed.

In recent months, the store has been heralded as one of America’s best home stores by House Beautiful, and one of the Top 40 by Architectural Digest.

“I’m absolutely loving having the store,” says Mele, who reminds us that the petite perch packs a visual punch in only about 500 square feet of space. “And it has no basement or back room,” he adds with a laugh. Merchandise moves quickly, and, often, you’ll see vintage and one-of-a-kind refashioned pieces displayed in front of the store—colorful eye candy that leads customers to discover what lies within.

This fall, the store’s evolution continues with new textiles from the likes of Jennifer Shorto and Caitlin McGauley, as well as others; plus, custom-colored ceramics in collaboration with Nicholas Newcomb.

“There are so many wonderful boutique makers who are not known here,” Mele says, and he looks forward to giving the artisans a new platform for exposure in Fairfield County. The store is also adding to its list of bespoke design services, looking to become a one-stop-shop for upholstery (and reupholstery), window treatments and hardware, and even custom lampshades and trims.

In the three years since the opening, Mele has since decamped his New York City apartment for the Black Rock neighborhood in Bridgeport, overlooking Long Island Sound, where he has bought a house, established his design studio, and has plans in the works for a second store in the community that may be open just in time for the holidays.

“I’ve always wanted to show what I was all about,” says Mele. “How varied my tastes can be, as well as how varied my interests can be, aesthetically.”

If history is any indication, there’s no doubt the new space will allow him another platform to channel his hallmark style and inventiveness with aplomb.

Patrick Mele, Greenwich, patrickmele.com