A Change in Course: How MERZE Lifestyle Was Born
Pivoting from her corporate career of over 30 years, Mary Madore-Hickey went after her dream.
There are times in life you stop and think, “What do I want to do next?” This existential question is hitting home for many now as the COVID-19 pandemic pushes people to rethink their priorities, how they want to live, and what they want out of a career. Rewind a few years, and this is precisely what Mary Madore-Hickey was faced with.
A longing for something different, and family circumstances, lead her to the decision to turn away from her booming corporate career of over 30 years and carve a new path. It was then that MERZE Lifestyle was born. Through MERZE, Madore-Hickey shares her experience as an event stylist/planner and designer, and offers an enchanting boutique with the most unique finds.
MERZE Lifestyle is a curated marketplace and design company dedicated to bringing casual elegance to your home. Its products are a collection of goods that have a European artisanal quality and an authentically casual and elegant flair. But this new and different Connecticut brand also has one indispensable ingredient: The passion of its founder.
Madore-Hickey climbed the corporate ladder in industries such as aerospace and manufacturing, paving the way for other women to rise, too. In the last 10 years of her corporate life, she was at the top, consulting for large corporations in IT and management. Yet still, after reaching these impressive goals, something was missing.
Growing up with seven siblings, home and family have always been a deep part of the MERZE Lifestyle founder’s identity. Watching her mom bake bread and effortlessly host extended family on Sundays, Madore-Hickey developed a love for entertaining at a young age. With innate creativity, her interest in interior design, event planning, and styling grew easily from these roots.
Madore-Hickey’s strong family values were clear six years ago when her ailing parents were no longer able to care for themselves. Both she and her sister quit their jobs and changed their lives to help. When their parents passed three years later, it was time to ask those big questions: “What do I want to do next? Should I go back to consulting or do I want to set out on my own?”
Dreams of her own business were not foreign, but now felt closer. On the side, she had always enjoyed event styling and planning, but it stayed a part-time hobby as she delved further into her corporate career. The possibility that doing what she loved could become her next and best chapter became increasingly exciting.
Madore-Hickey took the leap, left thoughts of going back to consulting behind, and founded MERZE Lifestyle. The brand’s name is a sentimental nod to her daughter, Alexandria. As a child, she had a creative and curious imagination, and MERZE was one of her make-believe friends.
Now, a very real and concrete company, MERZE is all about having passion and love for the home. The boutique offers natural sustainable products that look and feel elegant in the home. After traveling throughout her adult life, Madore-Hickey found a special love for Provencial décor and European charm. Many products are imported from France, and in the MERZE Lifestyle journal, she writes with tips and insight to help people have fun with table-setting, interior design methods, styling, choosing flowers, and more. Tales of her travels also captivate.
“I believe that what a person considers beautiful is a healing force in this world. It is essential to our living and well-being. If you focus on the little things that bring beauty to your world, it centers you in that moment. There is a quiet in the observation. Now, I surround myself with beauty and creativity every day and it is exactly what I was looking for,” shares the founder, whose presence exudes the love she puts into her business.
Just like it was a journey for Madore-Hickey to found her company, MERZE Lifestyle is a journey toward the art of hospitality and design. It is a place where you can come to draw inspiration, empower your ideas, trust in your creativity, and, of course, shop.
To start your home journey and effortlessly elevate your spaces and gatherings, visit merze-lifestyle.com.