I remember noticing the little and special details in the homes we visited over the years. My love for them wasn’t solely about how they looked but more about how they felt. The homes I adored most were welcoming, comfortable, warm, eclectic, lived in, full of life stories, mementos, never too perfect. At age six I began to learn about the greater world at large from the personal interests expressed through home, and it was those exposures that led to my curiosity about art history, color, textiles, craft and ultimately design.
Later as a teen I was known to redesign my room to the resignation of my mother who had her own ideas about the old Victorian she was reviving. A hands-on kind of gal, one Saturday she came home to find me hauling a massive 13 foot wide carpet roll over the banister 20 feet up. At sixteen I was determined to live in a raw artist’s/dancer's studio flooded with natural light - I pulled everything out to expose romantic and rough wood floors, took down the drapes and painted the walls canvas white. It was my perfection. It was also the beginning of an interest in manifestation and change with the idea that one’s environment is primary in support of personal life endeavors and desires.
While interested in interiors, I headed to undergrad at Clark University in Massachusetts. There I explored my interests in Archaeology, Art History, studied English Lit, Psychology, Writing, Communications, worked in the library archive department, wrote for and co-edited the school newspaper, and continued the decorating antics, redesigning every speck of a college space I lived in over the four years. I graduated in 1997 with an open mind about a career back in New York and floated into advertising. Over four years in account management on large brands by Procter & Gamble and Coca-Cola but it wasn't a fit. Designing for friends on the side, I finally heeded the call and went back to school for technical training.
In 2001 I attended the Parsons School of Design, Interiors AAS program and reset my career path working for Sheila Bridges Design. As an Office Assistant, I picked up on the day-to-day interiors business and learned resources for specialized client projects, assisted with a Hudson NY storefront and aided in proof reading a book project. While brief, the experience was an excellent primer from a singular eye, author, talent and multifaceted designer. Eager to learn more about architectural design, I joined Aberdeen Properties - a family residential building business in Connecticut. There I spent two years as a Design Project Manager on private residential projects alongside architecture firms Roger Ferris + Partners and Shope Reno Wharton — both experiences served as excellent on-site educations with architects and building trades.
In 2004, entrepreneurial spirit took hold and I opened Studio K Interiors in Brooklyn. With the rise of design blogs and very new budget friendly internet resources, the offer was giving younger clients more accessible and affordable design advice and service. Four years in, business was good with positive notice until the financial crisis of September 2008. Wall Street crashed, the recession hit and Studio K Interiors shut down.
In Spring 2009 I joined the talented pool of designers at Lillian August, an inspired retailer and large design center in Norwalk, Connecticut. Located in a converted 100,000 square foot Bauhaus warehouse, LA is filled with incredible furniture, homewares, textiles, art and decor — any idea was possible because there was access to everything. The range of projects was diverse including city pied-a-terres, townhouses, beach cottages and country estates. Lillian August is also where I honed my styling eye, learning from some of the best designers and merchants in the business. After three Designer to Trade Manager to Store Co-Manager years, I was ready to run an independent creative business again.
In 2012 Freestyle Restyle was re-born and seven years later, I'm doing work that is inspired by authentic spirit, and I couldn’t be happier. What I've confirmed with each passing project is that home is definitely where my heart is and I truly love making clients happy in theirs.
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Interiors, Design Therapy & Styling, Project Management
Hoboken NJ, New York NY, Ulster County NY, 2012 - Present
Lillian August Furnishings & Design
NYC Trade Manager & Private Interior Design Services
Norwalk CT, New York NY, 2009 - 2012
Studio K Interiors
Interior Design, Decorating, Styling & Project Management
Brooklyn NY, 2004 – 2009
Aberdeen Properties, Inc.
Design Project Manager
Greenwich CT, 2002 - 2004
Sheila Bridges Design
New York NY, 2001 - 2002
Parsons School of Design, New York NY
Interior Design AAS, 2001 - 2002
Dean's List, Spring 2002
Clark University, Worcester MA
Bachelor of Arts – English, concentration in Communications & Writing, 1997
Living Arts Writer & Editor, The Scarlet, 1995 - 1997; Copy Editor, The Scarlet, 1994 - 1995