Q. Describe the most common types of jobs you do for your clients.
A. As a Design Consultant, I co-create with people who already have an idea of what they want in a room, they just need someone to help put it into visual language and then giving them steps and filling in the gaps they might not see to create their dream space.
As a Feng Shui consultant, I ask for a floor plan of the space and it's surroundings to enable the best balance of energy use and elements for the place.
I am not a reseller or project manager.
Q. What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A. Make sure you interview your designer and feng shui practitioner. If you don't connect with them, don't hire them. If I can't read a client and hear what their needs are, then the consultation will not benefit you, myself or your space.
Q. If you were a customer, what do you wish you knew about your trade? Any inside secrets to share?
A. If I was a customer wishing to know something secretive about using feng shui to design interiors I would ask if all designers have homes that look like a magazine spread and if Feng Shui was a wacky religion.
My answer would be- not in my home! I live with my kids, husband and pets. This always adds up to constant rambling through my home when friends pop over to play! Legos, Nerf Gun Bullets, Pet Hair, Homework papers, Single Alone Socks on the floor. Do I try to manage that using Feng Shui's art of placement and the organizational and design tricks I've learned? You betcha. That's the fun of design and using space to support your needs. Feng Shui is not a religion but I have learned that it does support ones method of spirituality. It's a great way to be authentic not only in your skin, but in your space where you live, work and play.
Q. What important information should buyers have thought through before seeking you out?
A. Ah! That's the nice thing about hiring a designer. We should be able to read a floor plan, estimate costs of materials after we measure a space and also suggest whether or not your ceiling requires painting!
When I come to have our consultation I hope that you have thought about your likes and dislikes in color, furniture and what items including accessories that you have already at your home that could be used - just in a new way, or new area.
If we are working together on a Feng Shui consult than I ask for a floor plan if there is one already drawn up, and your intentions personally for yourself that we can then make your space support this desire for you.
I'll bring with me tools to measure, questions to ask, color options and a plethora of ideas through pictures and experiences if you communicate with me some goals before our visit! If you bring a challenge that I can't answer during our consult because it's beyond my expertise, I will contact my network of contractors to find out what realistically we can obtain. That's the fun of design and feng shui - always learning new ways to do things!
Q. Why does your work stand out from others who do what you do?
A. Every single designer stands out as we are all unique and talented. We each have our own experiences to give to a space. However, knowing who I am and where I have been in my experiences, I know that I will work diligently to maintain professional practices, listen to what the client is asking for, while also adding a splash of whimsy to my designs when opportunity strikes! Western Feng Shui practices have really set me aside as a counselor and co-creator of living and working spaces. Rather than just the aesthetics, my clients will end up with a supportive reflection of themselves and their goals in their spacial environment. It's all connected.
Q. What do you like most about your job?
A. I have worked in various postions through out the design field including sales, textiles, workrooms and staging. What I like most about owning my own design business is following my path of creating beautifully balanced spaces for clients to live in and doing it in a authentic manner. I also enjoy communicating the visual aspects that many clients cannot always see.
Q. What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A. Question posed: What do I do with this space
My answer: Talk to me about this space, and who you are.
Many times, the client knows what they want in a space, they just can't communicate it visually. My job is to listen, perceive and hand ideas out to initially solve what their goals/dreams are. Then we look for issues that need to be resolved to get us to that balanced place of lovable, livable space!
Q. Do you have a favorite story from your work?
A. My favorite stories come from my Feng Shui consults. However, I do not share them as they can be very personal moments to my clients. After I read their space and they share a few personal issues, changes or intentions, we often find something in their space that is supporting their issues. Once removed, or restated - life feels better for them and things open up for changes to occur.
Q. What do you wish customers knew about you or your profession?
A. It's not just about picking colors, buying whatever furniture and accessory and moving on. Like life, every thing scaffolds on top of one another. Layer after layer is built upon to create a whole healthy space that looks like a million bucks - but might not even need $100 bucks spent! (Except for my consulting fee of course!)
It's hard work and takes time, talent and people skills to work with clients needs. Co-creating a space using Feng Shui only works if the client is coming to the consultation with open arms and heart, ready for the momentum that shifting ones space can bring.
Q. How did you decide to get in your line of work?
A. I Dream Of Jeannie's purple bottle. Wow! Was that not a cool space.
Then Brady Bunch would come on after. I mean really - who wouldn't want to re-design that orange and brown family room!?
I had a friend who was going to be President of the United States. He said I could be Secretary of the Interior. Ha!
Would play with Barbies all the way up to Junior High. But it wasn't about the role playing, it was all about the fashion and the dramatic rooms I created.
I create. Can't get around it. I love all arts and thought what better way to express those modalities but through using environments as an expression of the visual arts I'd studied my whole life.
Q. Tell us about a recent job you did that you are particularly proud of.
A. Lutheran Family Services asked for a designer to work on a receiving home for kids that would get pulled out of their homes in the middle of the night, stay in this home for a bit and then move onto a Foster home.
I was given a bedroom for pre-teen to teen age. Multi gender needs based on who might need the room.
The delicacy of providing a child a nurturing space full of love with out their birth families stung me and drove me to create with passion all the way down to the details of books and tools used to cope with anger one might have while living in that space.
Very proud of that bedroom.
Q. Do you do any sort of continuing education to stay up on the latest developments in your field?
A. My credentials for western theory Feng Shui were earned in 2013 after a year of studying under the Western School of Feng Shui in California. Renowned author Terah Kathryn Collins founded the school and they provide methods of feng shui that are usable today in our western culture.
While growing this company I am also working part time in the trade as a display merchandiser in a well known interior design trade showroom that sells modern and classic textiles and furniture in our large city. This helps me stay connected and also keeps me up on high end trends that trickle down to the mainstream after a few years.
Q. What are the latest developments in your field? Are there any exciting things coming in the next few years or decade that will change your line of business?
A. Through the years, you can always expect new designs in products such as lighting, kitchen gadgets, furniture and art, etc.
However, technology is surely changing everything in the field! This also has allowed a DIY to actually do it themselves! From AutoCad from 20 years ago to 3D Printers, online ordering of fabrics versus showroom shopping, to design portfolios on a website instead of carried around, and IPad type readers that allow magazine's for viewing. It's all so brilliantly exciting isn't it?! There is ALWAYS so much to learn and review in design.
For right now though, because I am an artist first - I love hand drawing and drafting and there is something about having a file cabinet full of books and ideas on paper that can be touched!
Q. If you have a complicated pricing system for your service, please give all the details here.
A. My pricing is not complicated, however I have found that 90 minute to 2 hour consults work best. I can do this online for out of staters or onsite. This time frame was not allowed to pick on Thumbtack. Please contact me on www.conspiredesign.com for more information.
Q. If you were advising someone who wanted to get into your profession, what would you suggest?
A. It's not easy. Be ready to work. Know how to communicate verbally as you must be a people person. Learn the art of customer service. Designing is really "selling" in most job positions so take business courses, not just art and rendering classes.