Design Watch: Top 5 Things We Heard at WNWN 2023

In this edition, we’re revealing our favorite moments from WNWN and the things designers said that just stuck!

“You’re in their underwear drawer” – Steph Viesta, Studio Seva

Verellen’s event, Design your Future: Navigating Industry Challenges and Making Wise Choices for Young Creatives, was a powerful conversation about how to operate your business and properly educate yourself and your clients alike to get the most out of the design process. Moderator Kathryn Richardson asked Lauren Waldorf, Steph Viesta, and Thomas Verellen tough questions surrounding the topics of sustainability, saying no, building relationships with vendors, and more! When discussing the importance of creating a strong, trusting relationship with your client, Steph Viesta chimed in saying “You’re in their underwear drawer!” As a designer, you’re granted backstage access to every nook and cranny of your client’s life and there needs to be that mutual understanding and respect between the both of you in order to make it work. This trust then leads to effective communication, making it possible to design the space they’re envisioning in their head. And at the end of the day, that’s what you’re there for!

“Green is the new neutral” – Dabito

Are we finally moving away from gray’s reign in interior design? If you ask me, after taking a stroll through Living By Design’s Virtual Showhouse, I’d say we’re in the midst of a vibrant revolution! Designers Dabito and Will Taylor sat down with Hadley Keller of Design Leadership Network to discuss their design processes for creating an entirely virtual dream space. Picture this: 18 rooms, 12 designers, and one metaverse. You’d think it could turn into a design mosh pit, right? But no, there was an enchanting cohesiveness that wove itself throughout the home. When asked how this was so seamlessly achieved, Dabito emphasized the importance of carrying elements throughout different spaces, specifically, color. “Green is the new neutral,” he said. If you think about it, green is nature’s neutral; all the more reason to bring it into our homes. Playing with different shades and textures brought dimension and charisma to the space. He sprinkled hints of green everywhere, from a green bedroom door to green crown molding, and even green striped towels in the bathroom. Dabito and Will worked together to bring this continuity from inside to out. Will designed the outside of the home where he filled both the front porch and pool surroundings with plants galore. He also created a beautiful outdoor shower with forest green tiling and gold accents, very similar to what Dabito designed for the Guest Room Bathroom. Check out a full virtual tour of the house here!

“Do you want me to facilitate that or interpret that?” – David Frazier

The Gallery at 200 Lex hosted a trio of up-and-coming industry professionals to chat about their journey in the design world. Allegra O. Eifler, David Frazier, and Peter Dolkas, FREDERIC It List honorees, really know what’s it in today’s ever-evolving design landscape! A large part of this conversation revolved around working with clients and knowing the right questions to ask. One of David Frazier’s key methods in deciphering what a client is looking for is to start out with a mood board or inspirational photo. Once that’s in play, he asks this very insightful question: “Do you want me to interpret that or facilitate that?” He goes on to explain that there can be stark differences between replicating what the client shows him versus recreating his own version of it. This methodology of questioning allows you to weed out exactly what the client is looking to get out of this interaction. Maybe they’re just looking for someone to make the process easier; they know what they want and they want you to source everything for them. Or maybe they have room for a little creative interpretation and are open to new ideas. Either way, it’s essential as a designer to know why you’re there and set the right expectations.

“When traveling, stay at the local hotel, not the five-star one” – Mary McDonald

The influence of travel on design is undeniable. Exploring new countries, cities, and cultures can be one of the biggest sources of inspiration. Mary McDonald has traveled all over the world from India to Portugal to Egypt, and continues to describe how her experiences spill over into her designs. With Mary being a luxury interior designer, one might assume that she’s staying at five-star hotels. But, Mary actually prefers finding accommodations that are more closely connected to the true culture of the city. Opting for a local, idiosyncratic hotel allows her to immerse herself in the authentic atmosphere of what’s around her. On a broader scale, this idea signifies a willingness to step out of your comfort zone and view the world from a different perspective. This approach aligns perfectly with the essence of interior design, which is all about creating spaces that reflect the unique character and spirit of their inhabitants. Mary’s advice encourages designers to seek genuine, unfiltered experiences in their travels. It urges us to explore the hidden gems, embrace local craftsmanship, and uncover design elements that may not be found in the polished, international hotel chains. By doing so, we gain a deeper understanding of regional aesthetics, materials, and design philosophies that can be integrated into our own work.

“White doesn’t compete with nature” – Billy Ceglia

Outdoor living has shifted its focus to creating functional, sustainable, and personalized spaces that can be enjoyed year-round. They offer a versatile extension of your home, enabling you and your guests to enjoy socializing in nature. Brown Jordan hosted a panel with Billy Ceglia, Cara Woodhouse, and Mario Nievera about how maximizing our outdoor spaces has changed the way we live. Each designer has their own unique style and way of bringing their projects to life. While Billy Ceglia’s color choice may not be groundbreaking, he sure makes a good case for it. Billy’s go-to is white outdoor furniture: “White doesn’t compete with nature.” He explains how his goal isn’t to create something that distracts from the beauty of the outdoors but to design with it in mind and effortlessly blend everything together. Billy tries to instill the biggest impact with the fewest ingredients. A clean, white space does just that. This still leaves space for pops of color in accent pieces, throw pillows, and table accessories to come through and reflect the homeowner’s style. His advocacy for the timeless elegance of white furniture serves as a reminder that sometimes, the most powerful design statements are made through graceful simplicity.


Design Watch: Designers We Love!

In this edition, get acquainted with some of our favorite designers at the moment! From biographical design to embracing imperfections, these designers are bringing a new attitude to the art. 

DeMuro Das – Brian DeMuro & Puru Das

DeMuro Das is an international design powerhouse based in New Delhi and New York. Drawing inspiration from India’s rich culture, Brian DeMuro and Puru Das founded the brand in 2002 after visiting their families in New Delhi. The duo noticed how underdeveloped the furniture market was: Das described the concept of local carpenters coming to your home and assembling a piece of furniture in your driveway based on a catalog photo. To bring a stronger sense of quality and luxury to this market, they began working to fill this gap. While furniture served as their initial foray, the trajectory of DeMuro Das seamlessly evolved to encompass broader design realms. A natural progression led them to the realm of interior design followed by architectural services, symbolizing a holistic approach to shaping spaces. At the heart of DeMuro Das’s ethos is the aspiration to craft interiors that resemble the timeless nature of honest beauty. Their artistic philosophy is precisely modernist, but rooted in history. This very connection to India’s design heritage has empowered them to manifest creations that are both historical and contemporary, the epitome of crafted luxury. 

Bilal Rehman Studio – Bilal Rehman

Bilal Rehman is creating waves in the interior design space with his design approach grounded in experience. This designer turned internet celebrity has forged an unwavering fan base by staying true to himself and sharing his audacious style. Five years ago, Bilal was a college student majoring in computer engineering, a choice aligned with his parents’ conventional aspirations. Yet, his passion for interior design blossomed through an internship on the periphery of his academics. After four diligent years at only 23 years old, he opened Bilal Rehman Studio. Recognized for his aesthetic that didn’t fit the mold at the time, Bilal’s dramatic, contemporary style incorporated unique conversation starters and breathed fresh life into Hosuton’s design landscape. He was doing well but needed that extra push to solidify his abilities as a young designer. Bilal recruited his younger sister to revamp his social media. Under her guidance, he embraced authenticity wholeheartedly, even if it meant cussing on camera. The outcome was staggering; within a mere 24 hours, Bilal’s follower count skyrocketed beyond 100,000, affording him a newfound platform to cultivate his business endeavors. The brand he’s created builds a singular, cohesive experience that stimulates all the senses of the visitors, each detail working together to tell a story. 

And Studio – Arianna De Gasperis

And Studio is an interior design practice dedicated to crafting spaces that foster connection and infuse daily life with profound richness. Founder Arianna De Gasperis is a Parsons New School for Design alum who blends the precision of a graphic designer with an innate affinity for the sensory dimensions intrinsic to interior environments. Arianna’s fascination with historic and peculiar spaces resonates deeply with her design ethos and is an ever-present motif in her creations. And Studio’s approach rests on four ideals: imperfection is beauty, connection, art as muse, and slowness as virtue. Consistently looking to art history for inspiration, she’s more interested in preserving roots than focusing on what feels like a footprint of today. When working on a space, she attempts to keep the intrinsic character of the place intact, finding charm in even the most accidental of flaws. In Arianna’s own home, an 1850s Queen Anne Victorian brownstone, all the authentic details from the stained-glass windows to the trim and molding were left untouched. In essence, And Studio stands as a testament to Arianna’s commitment to the harmonious interplay between history, design, and the inherent spirit of space.

Lambart and Browne – Freddy van Zevenbergen & Tom Browning

Lambart and Browne is a London-based interior design and architectural firm whose fundamental inspiration comes from one founder’s grandparents who forged creatively driven friendships and social circles. Freddy van Zevenbergen’s grandparents were heavily immersed in the vibrant creative surroundings of mid-20th century British writers, artists, and photographers. This spilled into Freddy’s upbringing, instilling within him a fascination for architecture and decoration at a young age. He partnered with Tom Browning in 2010 to found Lambart and Browne which has continued to grow organically throughout the past decade. They have developed a meticulous process across all stages of design from conception to spatial coordination to construction. Sourcing from revered manufacturers, hand sketching designs at each stage, incorporating CGI, curating bespoke pieces, and many other details ensure each client receives a top-of-the-line experience and result. Lambart and Browne have an impressive portfolio working on both private homes and members clubs all while developing their own furniture to incorporate in each space. Upheld by the importance of creating spatial energy and emotion, this firm knows no boundaries. 

Tune In

Homing In explores the soul of homes – past, present, and future – with Matt Gibberd and cultural leaders. 99% Invisible delves into the art and influence of design and all the unnoticed design around us. The Interior Design Business features the practitioners and experts in the field on the challenges they face, both day-to-day and in the long term. House Guest hosts the designers behind the houses and hotels you see in glossy magazines to share their experiences and trade secrets.


Design Watch: Behind the Designs – Workplace Culture

In this edition, acquaint yourself with the designers who are making moves to enhance their company’s work culture and listen to their employees.

Jeffrey Dungan – Jeffrey Dungan Architects

Jeffrey Dungan, an architect based in Birmingham, Alabama, boasts over two decades of expertise. His aversion to urging employees into endless hours rather than smart work sparked a desire for streamlined efficiency. His vision? Timely project executions, delighted clients, and profits intact. Jeffrey identified time as the pivot to his triumph. Merging time and square footage data, he created a formula (square feet / time =  efficiency) quantifying each employee’s efficiency. He figured if he could operate his entire office at a more efficient rate, then he can generate more work without burnout. So, he calculated the average efficiency rate and rewarded average, above-average, and so on at an exponentially growing rate. By incentivizing based on performance tiers, Dungan unleashed a productivity surge. This ingenious strategy fueled a workforce aligned with purpose, propelling an environment of efficiency.

Elizabeth Graziolo – Yellow House Architects

Elizabeth Graziolo immigrated to the United States as a young girl. After honing her craft at Peter Pennoyer Architects for 20 years, she launched her own venture, Yellow House Architects. Here, Liz encountered unfamiliar territories, facing challenges foreign to her previous employee role. Transitioning from architect to boss illuminated stark differences. Time was her yearned-for resource – something elusive yet essential. Liz’s commitment to bonding with her team was affirmed through an exit interview that resonated deeply. Amidst burgeoning demands, Liz recognized the need to allocate time for herself and her business. Her solution emerged as a strategic delegation of responsibility, fostering meaningful connections within her team. Learning from the Entrepreneurs’ Organization, she embraced the power of a managing director/CEO to share her burdens, enabling her to invest time more strategically – a crucial hire, she contends. In her vision, a culture of transparent communication thrives. Be it time or remuneration, Liz encourages employees to voice their needs openly. With architectural prowess and business acumen, Elizabeth Graziolo is deftly navigating her dual role, striving for equilibrium. 

Kimberlee Gorsline – Kimberlee Marie Interiors

Kimberlee Gorsline, founder of Kimberlee Marie Interiors, has been designing homes since her very first dollhouse remodel as a child. Her passion has grown into a commitment to enhancing one of life’s core aspects: our homes. Throughout the years of running her firm, Kimberlee has asked herself, am I doing this right? While there’s no one-size-fits-all business manual, employee morale can speak volumes. Peaking behind her seemingly harmonious team’s curtain, she discovered hushed opinions, especially across hierarchies. Tackling this head-on, Kimberlee started with herself; she knew she had to be vulnerable in order to encourage others to do the same. With a known safe space amongst everyone, she guides her team to embrace positive intentions and approach discussions with openness. Creating a team that’s comfortable with conflict, commitment, and accountability marks a promising stride toward an enriching workplace.

Michel Fiechter TPG Architecture

The post-pandemic office landscape has undergone significant transformations, prompting the need to align physical spaces with new ways of working and communicating. As employees place greater value on a healthy work environment, New York-based design firm TPG Architecture steps up. Recognizing the importance of employee well-being, TPG takes a tailored approach through innovative workplace design. “We have to give people the right alternatives to working from home so they have a reason to come into an office,” notes managing executive Michel Fiechter. TPG worked with a multinational client, introducing a lush ‘green room’ and a tranquil meditation area to the workspace. Customizing solutions to match individual business needs and employee preferences cultivates comfort and productivity. Neglecting these nuances can yield counterproductive results. While technology aids in monitoring, organizational support remains the linchpin of success. People seek a comfortable environment, and responsiveness is key. Consult with a firm like TPG or tap into employee insights to optimize workspace productivity and culture. 

Tune In

To learn more about the importance of workplace culture check out these podcasts! Beyond Interior Design explores the fusion of interior design with health, technology, psychology, sustainability, culture, nature, and entrepreneurship, The Business of Home Podcast interviews thought leaders, entrepreneurs, and creatives about the changes and challenges facing the interior design community, Happier at Work focuses on HR and business leaders aiming to retain top talent through enhancing employee happiness, and the StyleRow Podcast’s episode with Ariel Johnson pulls back the curtain to reveal how she innovates to build an exceptional culture. 


Design Watch: Worth It Workshops

In this edition, discover the assets you need to add to your library that will propel your business to new heights of success! MasterClass is an immersive online experience, that sweeps you off your feet and into the minds of the world’s foremost experts. This is learning reimagined. 

Design A Space You Love

Elevate your most cherished room to superstar status with the guidance of home renovation guru Shea McGee. Building solely off of fresh and effortless touches, this first-class face-lift will transform the ambiance of your home. Shea’s wealth of experience in designing tailor-made homes has informed her approach to teaching and she believes her techniques can be used by anyone and applied to any room, creating a space you truly love. This course features seven thoughtfully, curated topics including developing a design plan, interior finishes and fabric schemes, and balancing lighting. The key takeaway: self-assurance to bring the designs you adore to life within your own home.

Kelly Wearstler Teaches Interior Design

Immerse yourself in the captivating world of Kelly Wearstler’s design ethos, which has been credited with reshaping modern American design. Take a peak behind her curtains to unravel the enigma of interior design, learn to expand perceptions of space, curate art and objects, and more! Her seventeen video lessons uniquely include “field trips” to a few of her project locations where you get an authentic glimpse of her philosophy in action. Kelly not only shares prized design tricks like vibe trays, but she offers valuable insights into the intricacies of navigating the world of design in today’s dynamic landscape. Walk away with a fresh perspective and understanding of design. 

Frank Gehry Teaches Design and Architecture

At 19 years old, Frank Gehry juggled the role of a truck driver by day and sculpture student by night. Little did the world know, his audacious vision for the potential of architecture would ultimately redefine the silhouettes of our urban landscapes and ignite the imaginations of creatives across the globe. Now, through his online architecture course, this visionary extends an invitation into his never-before-seen model repository, offering a privileged glance into the intricate tapestry of his creative journey. Across Frank’s seventeen lessons, you’ll discover your distinct voice and learn the art of designing spaces and structures that resonate with humanity.

Corey Damen Jenkins Teaches Interior Design

Renowned as one of the leading contemporary interior designers, Corey Damen Jenkins crafts exquisite environments for clients worldwide. His belief in democratizing exceptional design led him to share his expertise with you! Get ready as he imparts the art of crafting impactful and functional interiors, regardless of your budget. All twelve of Corey’s lessons are infused with his infectious enthusiasm for the craft and the notion that beautiful design has the power to change our lives. From meticulous space planning to defining your style, learn to make decisions with conviction the first time around. “We’re all worth the investment,” says Corey. Why not channel that into your home: it’s more than just a physical space. 

Tune In

If design and architecture pique your interest, check out these engagingly educational podcasts! Learning Interior Design with Marcie Dennis reveals experts’ secrets on design, organization, and functionality for a stress-free path to creating a beautiful living space. The Interior Collective hosts renowned designers for actionable advice and inspiring takeaways, empowering your practice. A Well-Designed Business bridges the business gap with real-world insight from top designers. Lastly, Business of Design is a global resource offering field-tested strategies for enhanced confidence, client retention, and thriving profits.


Design Watch: Thinking Outside The Box

In this edition, get to know a few designers who aren’t sticking to the status quo on their ‘services’ page. Every client has different needs, so why limit them by limiting yourself?

Gina Caulkins – California Daydreams

California Daydreams is adamant about people truly living in and enjoying the spaces they design. Whether that’s kicking your feet up on the coffee table or getting a little messy in the kitchen, this Bay Area design studio creates comfortable spaces for families to make their homes. Founder and Principal Designer Gina Caulkins is a working mom herself and launched her business on this idea from personal experience with a busy family still wanting a peaceful retreat at the end of the day. Gina and her team cater to clients with a variety of needs and their services reflect that. 

  • Design Day: design-only service with up to 2 hours of in-home design time and up to 6 hours crafting the Design Plan, ideal for clients seeking assistance in completing rooms or selecting materials for construction, with a shoppable list provided to bring the design to life
  • Styling Session: hand-select decor from our inventory that complements your design preferences and mixes with your existing pieces, with the option to purchase our favorite items at the end of the session
  • Full-Service Interior Design: covers all the design steps – designing, planning, ordering, installing, and styling – and collaborates with contractors when necessary
  • Interior Design Consultation: 90-minute walk-through and tailored proposal

Kristen Toscano Messina – Kristen T Messina Design

Kristen T Messina Design’s founder, Kristen Toscano Messina, began her design career as a set designer in the film industry creating visual landscapes as an extension of the narrative. In transitioning to interior design, Kristen reflected this skill in her work by finding the client’s story and expressing that in their home. With an emphasis on natural materials, she designs rooms that evoke a sense of wonder and serenity. Kristen provides services ranging from in-depth projects to a helping hand.

  • Designer for a Day: 1-1 design session to help you design, shop, problem-solve, or style a space and get advice on making the most of what you have and what you need
  • Designer By Your Side: 20-hour blocks of time for professional help and advice for clients who need a little help in certain areas but want to be involved 
  • Holiday Decoration: transform your home with the beauty of the season – tree decorating, wreaths, garlands & tablescapes.
  • Design Consultation: 2-hour walk-through to discuss needs and get to know the space, getting a fresh set of eyes on the project
  • Full-Service Design: style from start to finish by creating floor plans, layouts, mood boards, and whatever else you need to transform your space

Shareen Bailey – Green Shareen Design

Green Shareen Design was founded by Shareen Bailey in the hopes of creating a design firm that was bespoke, female, and eco-friendly for other small businesses. Shareen is the only AfroLatina Interior Designer in Harlem, NYC, and specializes in growing women-owned businesses through designing from scratch and/or remodeling home offices and newly leased or purchased places. Creating spaces that are simultaneously stylish and live-able, she consistently hits the mark on clients’ expectations for a functional, high-quality end result. 

  • Virtual Design: ideal for everyone social distancing and wanting anything from consulting advice to entire rooms designed for DIY implementation through 5 steps – click, consult, create, call, complete
    • Fill out a questionnaire to understand needs
    • Services include paint consultations, mood boards, styling, space planning, finishing touches, sourcing specific items, etc.
    • Receive a virtual client presentation of your e-design services including live links to purchase items
  • Commercial Interior Design: transform your space to align with your mission and values, attracting clients to an ambiance crafted by us and executed with our architectural expertise, perfect for new or existing businesses and hospitality groups seeking full-scale renovations or new
  • Residential Interior Design: redesign your living or working space to suit your needs, with construction management and decorating services for all aspects, catering to owners and long-term renters alike

Jonathan Feldman – Feldman Architecture

Feldman Architecture is a forward-thinking residential and commercial studio, celebrated for its eco-conscious designs that seamlessly coexist with the earth, creating captivating and meaningful spaces that enhance the lives of clients, communities, and nature. Collaboration efforts lie at the heart of their design philosophy, yielding exceptional results to be enjoyed for generations. Feldman Architecture is committed to giving back, dedicating 1% of its collective time towards pro bono projects and organizing fundraising events, ensuring that thoughtful, sustainable design remains accessible to all. Their ongoing projects, including a deployable kitchen and classroom, the Global Glimpse Bay Area headquarters, and the SF Community Health Center office renovation, exemplify their devotion to community engagement. As pioneers in this endeavor, they can inspire others to embrace benevolent design and empower those in need to experience the beauty of architecture.

Tune In

Get into a deeper conversation about interior design with these podcasts! Interior Design Therapy Sessions with Britney Johnson empowers women to own their style and create authentic homes. Spacecraft – The Workplace Podcast examines the transformative nature of a well-designed workspace for businesses. Interior Design Business dishes out advice on how to attract high-paying luxury clients. Profit is a Choice teaches you how to command every choice in your business to increase profits.


Design Watch: Must-Attend Events

In this edition, mark your calendar for the top events in the design industry you can’t miss!

August 13 – 15, 2023 | Los Angeles

GATHER is the National Conference by the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID). Bringing together all sectors of the interior design community, connect with leaders and colleagues across the board. Spark new relationships and build your community through networking events, breakout sessions, and an array of specialized events. Featured speakers include Simon T. Bailey, Benjamin Tracy, Genevieve Gorder, and more. Register today!

August 13 – 15, 2023 | Pier 36, New York

Shoppe Object hosts a community of brands and people who comprise the most compelling representation of the home and gift market. As a gathering of fellowship, an expression of ideas, and a physical manifestation of a shared ethos, this show is the ultimate resource for premier merchants and influential editors. Register today!

September 8 – 10, 2023 | Javitz Center, New York

The Armory Show, described as “New York’s Art Fair”, is exhibiting over 225 international galleries which will be representing 35+ countries and 800+ artists. Attendees will be drawn into the fair’s core section, a harmonious combination of thematic, dual-artist, and solo-artist presentations. From there they can explore a thought-provoking series of programs and truly engage with public art activations. Purchase tickets today!

September 16 – 24, 2023 | London

London Design Festival transforms the city into a design playground – it’s a place to celebrate the design excellence and talent of London’s creative community. The city is separated into design districts, each boasting its own unique personality that reflects the local community. Explore Landmark Projects that pay homage to established, late designers, interactive artistic spaces, installations at the V&A Museum, and more!

November 12 – 13, 2023 | Javitz Center, New York

Boutique Design New York (BDNY) is the place to immerse yourself in the products, projects, and personalities that define hospitality’s boutique and lifestyle segment. Design-focused products, conferences, and on-floor Designed Spaces create a productive experience that combines the ease of doing business with inspiration. Connect with talented and influential figures in the industry and peruse new furnishings that will kickstart your creative engine. Apply to exhibit or register today!


Design Watch: AI-Driven Design

In this edition, venture into the tech-infused design world and discover how AI can fit into your business!

3D Printing

Is 3D printing the future of design? That’s for you to decide. In the simplest terms, 3D printing is a method of materializing a three-dimensional object layer-by-layer using a digital blueprint. But here’s where the magic unfolds – design finds its playground in this realm. If you can imagine it, chances are you can use 3D printing to take it to its tangible form. You orchestrate every detail by choosing the color, design, size, and material. Plus, its use of eco-friendly materials is totally sustainable! You can also use 3D printing to create miniature versions of your ideas to truly bring your vision to life. If you find yourself stuck searching for the perfect lampshade to finish off a space, try printing one yourself! 

AI and CNC Cutting

Tsuruta Architects, a UK-based studio, fearlessly fused AI and CNC (computer numerical control) cutting technology to create a symphony of bespoke designs and artwork for residential homes. Founder Taro Tsuruta ventured into AI after facing budget constraints in hiring a graphic designer. Through a series of experiments, the AI program DALL-E 2 transformed his ambitious ideas into material masterpieces. A seamless upload to the CNC router cemented the sketch and the designs were directly imprinted onto wooden boards. The convergence of these technologies has shattered the boundaries of creativity, opening up a realm where the possibilities truly do become endless so long as there is a creative mind steering the ship.


Finally, an AI dedicated exclusively to captivating the world of interior design emerged. Behold, FabricGenie – an AI-powered textile tool ready to transform design prompts into mesmerizing custom patterns with working repeats. But, the true allure lies in the creative individuality of the inputter. Load FabricGenie with a prompt like “pink flowers against a white backdrop” and within minutes, a free pattern arrives via email. Satisfied? Order a swatch for $8 or $27 per square meter. Within a week, thousands requested patterns and swatches including the most comical pairing of [former British Prime Minister] Theresa May surrounded by cheese. This tech will soon enchant the mainstream, and as a designer, you can actualize your clients’ unique visions. 

Zaha Hadid Analytics + Insights (ZHAI)

AI isn’t just stealing the spotlight in the world of interior design; architects are hopping on the bandwagon too! Enter ZHAI, the pioneering in-house team harnessing data and AI to craft intricate building plans. Post-pandemic, the corporate landscape craved a revolution waving goodbye to one-size-fits-all models. Embracing personalization, ZHAI began tracking both people and environmental cues with AI to create a design utopia. From seating arrangements that reinforce connections to strategic coffee shop placements and tailored lighting solutions, their AI-powered prowess knows no bounds. But that’s not all – using another tech, they can churn out 100,000 building plans in just 27 hours, a feat that would take an architect a decade of drawing 40 blueprints a day to match!  

Tune In

Catch up with tech in the podcast space too! Design You is a no-BS guide to designing a life that is both fulfilling and successful, recently exploring the possibilities that tech and AI make realisitc in design. Thrive in Design unveils the secret to weaving tech into your design process, transforming your creative process into a sustainable, innovative masterpiece. Design:ED lends an inside look into architecture through the eyes and minds of industry leaders. Lastly, The Interior Design Consultant is packed with advice, creative inspiration, and savvy business strategies to help you conquer the design world.


Design Watch: The Power of Mentorship

In this edition, meet the trendsetting designers who are also mentors, empowering you to leave your mark on the design world. 

Grayson Pratt – Grayson Pratt Interiors

Grayson Pratt of Grayson Pratt Interiors is on a mission to help busy people feel at home and at peace in their spaces. Her zeal for design doesn’t stop at consultations and renovations though. Grayson’s free resources include her guide “6 Key Decorating Questions to Answer”, virtual webinars and masterclasses, and the IG series dubbed “Wine & Design”. Her expertise comes full circle with “The Confident Design Course”, a program rooted in giving the design power back to the student. 

Rachel Larraine Crawford – The Design Coven

Rachel Larraine Crawford, a holistic interior designer, is here to guide you toward design enlightenment. The Design Coven’s “The Real Life Mentorship” empowers you to tap into your intuition and create awe-inspiring spaces. As a member, the design world is at your fingertips: exclusive access to premier vendors, furniture makers, and textile designers. Featured in exhibitions and published in a multitude of magazines, the mind behind this program is one worth exploring. 

Melissa Lunardon – ML Interior Design

ML Interior Design’s Melissa Lunardon has got the magic touch. Reflecting on her endeavor, Melissa recognized the importance of investing in herself thus the Interior Design Mentor Program. This personalized mentorship, aimed at those in the start-up phase of their business, guides you through the process of finding clients, networking, building a captivating brand, and finally transitioning to full-time self-employment in just three months. Melissa also shares her interior design expertise on Design Talk TV and offers design tips on her IG page.

Tune In

After hitting follow on these visionaries, plug into one of our favorite podcasts. The Holistic Interior Design Business Podcast, which hosted StyleRow’s Erinn V, guides and inspires by sharing entrepreneurial journeys, strategies, trade partners, and Rachel Larraine Crawford’s holistic design insights. The Chaise Lounge serves up accomplished designers like Joe McGuire, Matthew Tenzin, and Anne Carr on a silver platter. Discover the key to staying ahead of the curve with How to Decorate by Ballard Designs. Their source: the minds of top style makers. Lastly, The Great Indoors dishes out advice on how to turn your house into a fabulous home while fostering an interactive Facebook community.

Client Management for Interior Designers How to Run an Interior Design Business

How to Manage Conflict Resolution with Your Interior Design Clients

In the dynamic world of interior design, conflicts can sometimes arise between designers and clients due to various reasons such as miscommunication, differing expectations, or misunderstandings about the project scope. However, managing conflict effectively is crucial for maintaining positive client relationships and ensuring project success. This article will guide you on how to manage conflict resolution with your interior design clients.

Why Conflict Resolution Matters?

  1. Preserves Client Relationships: Effective conflict resolution can help preserve and strengthen your relationship with your clients, fostering trust and mutual respect.
  2. Ensures Project Success: By resolving conflicts promptly and effectively, you can keep the project on track and ensure its successful completion.
  3. Enhances Client Satisfaction: When conflicts are handled professionally and respectfully, it can enhance client satisfaction and lead to repeat business and positive referrals.
  4. Promotes Continuous Improvement: Conflict resolution provides valuable learning opportunities that can help improve your communication and project management skills.

Steps for Effective Conflict Resolution

  1. Acknowledge the Conflict: The first step in conflict resolution is acknowledging the conflict. This involves recognizing the issue and understanding its impact on the project and the client relationship.
  2. Understand the Client’s Perspective: Try to understand the conflict from the client’s perspective. This can help you empathize with their concerns and find a solution that meets their needs.
  3. Communicate Openly and Honestly: Open and honest communication is key to resolving conflicts. Discuss the issue with your client, listen to their concerns, and express your own thoughts and feelings respectfully.
  4. Find a Win-Win Solution: Aim to find a solution that satisfies both you and your client. This may involve compromise, flexibility, and creativity.
  5. Learn from the Experience: Reflect on the conflict and what led to it. Use this as a learning opportunity to improve your services and prevent similar conflicts in the future.

Conflict resolution is a crucial aspect of managing client relationships in interior design projects. By acknowledging the conflict, understanding the client’s perspective, communicating openly and honestly, finding a win-win solution, and learning from the experience, you can manage conflicts effectively and ensure the success of your interior design projects.

Client Management for Interior Designers How to Run an Interior Design Business

The Importance of Establishing Trust with Your Interior Design Clients

Trust is the cornerstone of any successful business relationship, and this is particularly true in the interior design industry. As an interior designer, your clients entrust you with their homes, their budgets, and their visions. This article will explore the importance of establishing trust with your interior design clients and provide tips on how to build and maintain this crucial element of your professional relationships.

Understanding the Importance of Trust

Trust is a key factor in the success of any interior design project. It allows for open communication, ensures that expectations are met, and ultimately leads to a successful project outcome. When clients trust their interior designer, they are more likely to feel comfortable expressing their needs and wants, more likely to accept the designer’s suggestions, and more likely to be satisfied with the end result.

Tips for Establishing Trust

  1. Consistency is Key: Consistency in your processes, protocols, systems, and policies can help build trust. Always showing up on time and being available for your clients can also contribute to this.
  2. Listen and Observe: Listening carefully to your clients’ needs and observing their reactions can help you understand their expectations and preferences.
  3. Be Open and Honest: Transparency is crucial in building trust. Be honest about what is feasible given the client’s budget and timeline, and always keep them informed about the progress of the project.
  4. Don’t Overpromise: Overpromising or overselling your capabilities can backfire and damage your client’s trust. It’s better to under-promise and over-deliver.
  5. Maintain Professionalism: While it’s important to build a friendly relationship with your clients, remember to keep things professional. This can help avoid personalizing any issues that may arise during the project.
  6. Showcase Your Credibility: Client testimonials and positive reviews can help build trust by showcasing your expertise and past successes.

Establishing trust with your interior design clients is crucial for the success of your projects and your business. By being consistent, listening and observing, being open and honest, not overpromising, maintaining professionalism, and showcasing your credibility, you can build and maintain trust with your clients.


  1. How do you build a trust-based relationship with a client? Building a trust-based relationship with a client involves consistent communication, understanding the client’s needs and wants, being open and honest, and delivering on your promises.
  2. How do interior designers provide value to clients? Interior designers provide value to clients by transforming their spaces to meet their needs and preferences, improving the functionality and aesthetics of their homes, and providing expert advice and solutions.
  3. Why is it important for an interior designer to identify and consider the needs and wants of a client? Identifying and considering the needs and wants of a client is important for ensuring that the design meets their expectations and enhances their quality of life.
  4. What makes a good interior design client? A good interior design client is one who communicates their needs and wants clearly, respects the expertise of the designer, is open to ideas, and is realistic about their budget and timeline.