Meet Interior Designer Cara Shahbandi, Owner of Stanton Home Design

Tori Sikkema, Interior | Brand Photographer + Stylist

Meet Cara Shahbandi, owner of Stanton Home Design. She is launching her design business based in Northern NJ, and her brand is poised to attract clients looking for a modern take on classic design!

Cara and I met at her home in Bergen County for an interior | brand photoshoot to showcase her design project, Cedar Hill Ave. The day was overcast, but the mood was bright as we set up for the day’s photoshoot. Cara’s Cat, Mr. Kitty, greeted me and my assistant, Ben, apprehensively at the door, scoping out the intruders. But soon after, Ben gave Mr. Kitty one belly rub, and that’s all it took to be best friends.

In preparation for our interior | brand photoshoot, I asked Cara some questions about herself, so I could best tell her story visually. I learned that Cara is a mom of two kiddos and loves designing for families like hers.

“I would say my secret sauce is that I genuinely care. Having someone come into your home and ultimately spend your money is a very personal task that I do not take lightly. Every family and person has different needs within their home that I think are important to cater to aesthetically but also functionally.”


Designing in a modern yet, classic esthetic takes vision and choosing elements that resonate and serve her clients for the long term versus following trends that ebb and flow.

“The reeded wall paneling done in the dining room. The texture it creates but also the simplicity of the design is what makes it unique in my opinion.”


I invite you to be a fly on the wall for my interview as we Meet the Designer!

Who or what inspired you to become a designer, and how did you prepare to transition from fashion

I would say my mom inspired me to become a designer. I lost my mother 4 years ago to cancer, and ever since, I have prioritized my health and my dreams. I was always so creative as a child and found as I got older, I was kind of forced to put my creativity to the side.

After leaving my fashion industry job, I stayed home with my two kids for a few years until they started school. When they finally were in school full time, I realized this was my time to do what I always wanted: be CREATIVE!

Last year I took interior design college classes through The New School and slowly created the business. I have taken my time to educate myself on the ins and outs of the interior design world ( and still learning). 

Can you talk about your career in fashion and the parallels between the two industries?

I worked for a lingerie manufacturer on 34th st. Most of my job was reading sales reports and reacting to those reports with the buyers. It helped me to understand color trends and silhouette trends. Understanding color, shapes, and scale is a huge part of interior design. It’s not something I learned overnight by any means as, well! A lot of it was and still is trial and error, especially when styling a room. 

How would you describe the vibe of your home and design aesthetic?

A modern take on classics.

What is your favorite color?

I know this sounds boring, but an off-white sweater or an off-white sofa looks so luxe and classic to me.

Do you have a favorite movie?

I always loved Pretty In Pink. Molly Ringwald’s personality in the movie resonated with me. 

What are you binging right now on any streaming service?

Showtime’s Your Honor and HBO’s The Last of Us

What is one of your guilty pleasures? 

Scrolling through Tik Tok at the end of the day. There are so many creative and funny people on that app it blows my mind!

If you have two hours all to yourself, no kiddos, and no work, how would you spend them? 

Working out and going to acupuncture. Since losing my mom to cancer, my health has been crucial.

Describe your favorite outfit.

A pair of good jeans and a nice blouse. My all-time favorite jeans are the Agolde 90’s pinch waist, and my favorite sneakers that I wear EVERYDAY are the New Balance 327s

If you want to learn more about Cara and Stanton Home Design, here is how to get in touch with her.



Cara’s website:

Want to work with me or learn more about interior | brand photography + styling?

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Enjoy images from the photoshoot!

The Journal


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