White Objects
About Evelyn and how she ended up in sunny FL!


My name is Evelyn Engstrom, a German transplant from Munich!

I founded Magdalena York Collection in 2003 after spending 12 years in the area rug industry where I aquired many skills such as weaving, dyeing of yarns and knowledge of fibers used in the industry to make rugs and carpeting.

Let me tell you a little bit about myself;

After aquiring a college degree in accounting, back in my home town of Munich, Germany, I worked for 3 years at the European Patent Office in Munich. Bored at work, nothing really exited me, sitting in a windowless basement office, making 1000's of copies a day, etc. for patent attorneys, and I am sure, I did not need a college degree for this job. 



My vacation time came up and I decided to visit family in Miami Beach and fell in love with FL. 3 weeks later, on my flight home, I met 2 lovely ladies  and after a long, almost 9 hour conversation on the plane, both offered me a job as tourguide since I spoke fluent English and German because I also told them how I did not love my job! I thanked them and said, I will be on touch....well, neither one of us was, staying in contact that is....

A year later, I had enough of the stuffy air in the basement, I called Jill & Gerrie, they mailed me books about the history of FL, we did not have internet then, Ponce De Leon, Henry Flagler, Julia Tuttle, J.D. Rockefeller, I studied FL history, they then interviewed and tested me over the phone. It was the most expensive phone bill I have ever received in the mail. My work visa came pretty quickly, quit my job at the patent office, sold my car and belongings and purchased a one way ticket to Miami! This was in 1989! I was 26 years young then...

Every 6 month, at the end of the season, I had to return to Germany and moved to Flensburg since my best male friend was a Pilot for a private corporation and he offered me free living in exchange for taking care of his plants and home. I got a job at the DMV, handing out points for bad driving...another not so fun job!

The second time around, I needed a new job since DMV did not rehire me, I wonder why? :-) So, one morning, I saw an ad for a position as a cook on a containership! Since I love to travel and love adventure, I called, got the job and got on the ship at the Elms Canal a few weeks later, connecting the Baltic Sea with the North Sea, and for 4 month, November 1990 until beg. of April 1991, I was cooking up a storm for my crew! I also got violently seasick and captain warned me to get to work or he will charge me with Muteny! Really? Ilmaz, the boatsman from Turkey, was my savior! He cooked 5 days in a row so I could lay in my cabin and feel sorry for myself. Once we arrived in Algeria, he made me clean and derost the anchor chain. Not expected!

So, finally I got back to Miami Beach, happy as a clam and as it happened, I met handsome RCR at the beach in '91 and we got married after only 2 month of dating...well, not sure who proposed to whom because we went to a party at Woody's in Miami Beach that night, so, don't remember clearly!

Well after 9 years together, married to a man that travels the world as a musician, I never really saw him so I decided, it is time to cut loose and enjoy life with my girlfriends and travel.

Little did I know, another handsome, smart, funny and immensly talented Landscape Designer called me from  Barbados he was vacationing at with a friend and asked me out on a date upon his return....I met him a few times before via mutual friends and I was not interested but he won me over with this unusual phone call. After 21 years together, we finally got married December 29th, 2021!

So many people have asked me over the last 30+ years how I ended up in the USA and how I started designing rugs.

My husband was the one who introduced me to vinyl rugs from Sweden on our first trip to Sweden together, visting his family.

I have to thank my husbands good friend, Elizabeth Dupont for giving me the chance to sell my first 10 runners via her now sold store " Good Food, Good Things" in Darien, CT. That really got sales started and never stopped! Nantucket and MV vacation home owners were my first large customer base!


Last but not least, I love both, all animals, except spiders, and people such as the nice and curtious ones!

My passion is for animals and people who fell on hard times and I will always have my heart open for the less fortunate.

I hope you got to know me a little better and I have answered some of your questions and made you smile, a little. 

" Love and live life to the fullest and be kind to each other"

                                        The End



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Evelyn container ship 1991.jpg
Evelyn container ship 1991 2.jpg

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