When I started my blog last year I had two goals in mind, one was to share some inspirational, creative ideas with the world, and the other was to shamelessly plug my interior design business. So let’s get on with the shameless plugging shall we.
I have been in the interior design industry for about 15 years. I guess I have had a passion for decorating as long as I can remember. I was always asking my mom if I could rearrange the furniture and my bedroom was in a constant state of flux. Even when playing with my Barbies, all I really wanted to do was redecorate their dream house.
So when I was a senior in high school, my art teacher asked if I was going to pursue something in a creative field. She liked my use of color and perspective and said I should look into interior design. I honestly didn’t even know what she was talking about. I grew up in the middle of a walnut orchard in the country, so this was a career I had never even considered.
On her advice, I looked into classes at a local junior college and decided to major in interior design. I loved the classes and I was really excited about my decision. Then in my sophomore year, my counselor persuasively steered me towards a degree in marketing, suggesting their weren’t a lot of opportunities in our area for that type of career and getting a business degree would be a smarter way to go. Going against my gut feeling, something which I have later learned not to do, I ditched my dream of becoming an interior designer and switched to marketing.
Now, let’s fast forward around 15 years. I had my business degree, worked in various sales and marketing jobs, but I never really felt fulfilled. As a hobby, I started picking up vintage furniture at garage sales and flea markets, then painting or repurposing them for our home. Encouraged by a friend, I rented a stall in a local antique mall and started selling my creations. I would get my booth looking just how I wanted, and then a customer would buy something and I would be irritated that it now didn’t look right. After doing this for about a year, my husband gently reminded me that I was supposed to be happy when I sold something and that maybe I was more interested in decorating my booth then selling anything. Aha! What a revelation! I am a decorator! I immediately enrolled in the interior design program at my local college and got on with the business of becoming an interior designer. I should have listened to my high school art teacher all along!
Having been in the industry now for over a decade, I am so happy I made the decision that day to go back and pursue my dream. It is still my passion every day and I feel truly blessed to get to do what I love for a living. Having worked with many clients over the years, I have come up with my own design philosophy, my decorator’s manifesto if you will. I’ll share a little bit with you:
1. Your home should be a reflection of you and not your designer. Anyone can order page 7 out of a catalog and have it look decent. A good designer taps into your vision, your personality, your sense of humor and your history. Your house shouldn’t look like anyone else’s and it certainly shouldn’t look like a catalog.
2. Decorating rules are merely guidelines. Don’t be afraid to take some decorating risks. Where there is fear, there is no creativity. The greatest compliment I get is when a client says “I never would have thought to do that, but I love it!”
3. Do not buy one thing until you have a plan; again merely a guideline 🙂
4. Look everywhere for inspiration. If you are in tune with your surroundings you would be amazed at what you see. Look at nature for color inspiration; photos from your travels; hotels and restaurants. Inspiration is everywhere if you are present enough to witness it.
5. Do not take your home, or your possessions so seriously. When you walk in the door at the end of the day your home should greet you with a big, warm hug; not “please take your shoes off before you step on that rug!” Getting it right is about being true to who you are, how your family lives and how you want to entertain with friends. That is truth in decorating!
Shameless plug over for now. My next post will be pure eye candy I promise!