Episode #0035 Creating Emotional Homes and Retail Environments, with Hollis Rendleman

Featured in this week’s episode of The Productive Designer host Crystal Collinson is with interior designer Hollis Rendleman.   

Hollis creates an experience in the home that is purely based on how her clients want to feel when they are in their own space. She has advice for creating more soothing office spaces in the home by adding comfort items or scents. For example, if you find velvet to be soothing then perhaps a velvet throw pillow is a small item to add that will create a more soothing workplace in your home. Hollis elaborates on different ways to get clients to talk more about how they want to feel in their home instead of just explaining their likes & dislikes. 

Hollis has had experience as a social worker and a retail clerk which has created this desire to tune into people’s feelings. She has truly found her place in the market and is using these skills effectively to create custom interiors for each of her clients. However, getting into the interior design world and creating her own business has not always been easy. Like many, It was not always easy, and she had to push herself to pursue her dream of being her own boss. 

After a year of starting her own business, the pandemic hit. Like many, she struggled during that time, but thankfully, she was able to find ways to expand her business. She hosts workshops online to help people create more relaxing environments in their homes and helps others reach their full potential in their designs. The moral of the story is, there is no perfect time to start your own business, but once you found your calling, it’s time to dive in and just begin somewhere…the hardest part is starting. 

So, join Crystal and Hollis as they talk about Hollis’s journey to interior design and creating a wonderfully relaxing home. And then, do something today that your future self will thank you for and find what items you can add to your home that will make you more at peace in your home.

You may also want to check on episode 31 which is about Creating Your Happy Place

How to reach Hollis:

Website – hollisrendleman.com and hollisrendleman.com/workshops 

Facebook- HollisRendlemanInterior I Instagram- @hollisrendlemaninteriors  

LinkedIn-hollis-rendleman 

Hollis Rendleman in TPD episode Creating Emotional Homes and Retail Environments,

Recommended podcasts:

Boom! LawyeredLovett or Leave it and Pod Save the World

- Click here for the RAW, unedited transcript -

0:38
Welcome everyone to another episode of The Productive Designer podcast. Thank you so much for joining me and my guest Hollis Rendleman today. Welcome Hollis.

0:47
Thank you. I’m very excited to be here.

0:50
First of all I love your name, it’s such a difficult is it what’s the nationality behind it.

0:54
It’s old English but my mom’s little sister when they were all little her sister had a friend named Hollis and my mom just was like, I love that name, it is in the memory banks.

1:06
I really like it. I think you get like do you get called Holly or anything like

1:09
I did as a kid me crazy because I was never a holly but yeah, by now. Yeah, in the last you know couple decades it’s been fine, but I love it it’s like that’s my last name that’s the big cat.

1:21
Oh really.

1:22
Yeah.

1:25
That’s such a stately name like, you know, Hollis Rendleman here.

1:29
I love it I love it has

1:30
a mouthful but thank you.

1:31
Yeah, no, it’s great. So tell us a little bit about what you do in the design world and who you do it for.

1:37
Yeah, so I am an interior architect, I have kind of two funnels to my business. One is working with custom clients where I focus mostly on remodels, so kitchen and bathrooms. Yeah, and I really like to work with custom clients who can be very clear about how they want to feel in their home, I am less tied to the aesthetics and more tied to kind of someone’s speaking, emotional language.

2:05
Okay and so would you say that that comes out in the form of more of a function, or how, how would you define this field is obviously a bit of a loose hearts 10 yard.

2:16
Yeah, I think, I mean it really helps shape the function, how they’re going to use it to kind of achieve those feelings, But then I think it actually makes aesthetic decisions. A lot easier because we, it’s so much less about this tile is pretty or this tile is trendy and much more about are all of these elements together going to really help solidify how you want to feel in this space.

2:41
Okay, yeah, I get that, that makes sense.

2:44
Yeah, so it’s, it leads to some very interesting introductory conversations, but it’s fun when I find clients who can really go there with me, which is great,

2:53
and that’s, and that would be, I’m guessing, sort of, I’m Canadian, so I’m going to say niche but your niche, would that would be what it would be right like that’s sort of how that differentiates you

3:02
yeah and it’s interesting because, you know, I’ve kind of wavered about saying this case but I also find that a lot of these clients also already have a really vast collection of artwork and again it’s not, it’s less about the aesthetic of the art to me also, but just the fact that they find these, you know, two dimensional pieces, evocative and they want to incorporate that in their space and that helps indicate you know some clients who are going to be able to have those kind of conversations with me, right, right. Wow.

3:35
Yeah, that’s definitely a different approach from what a lot of people I talked to in the design world. Yeah, so interior architect, I know that that’s, that’s more of a British term is it not like a UK thing, or how do you differentiate that.

3:48
Yeah, so basically I, you know, it was in the program I went to, it was enough about some of the system you know plumbing and HVAC and electrical systems that I felt like, you know remodels were in my wheelhouse in terms of kind of the scope of understanding, you know the costs implied in moving things and adjusting things and then really got to hone in on those skill sets, when I was working in corporate retail design, because that was a huge part of, we needed to design a great store and also not go crazy with the cost because we were flipping the whole store and changing all the plumbing or whatever,

4:29
right so I understanding more the structural and mechanical implications. Yeah, which is what you’re absolutely right because a lot of times I find my husband does renovations and there’s a lot of times where he’ll find he’ll get plans that have been drawn up by an architect, interestingly enough, and he’ll be like, cool, they’ve got the bathrooms over here and then again they’re on the opposite sides and he’s going okay from a cost standpoint, that’s really expensive like yeah, this this this and I can kind of gang it in one area, it’s going to you know make this much more usable budget and cost a lot less and, yes, less work so Yes. Interesting. So I know that this is not designed is not your first career so tell us how you ended up here because your website, it has the story but I want to hear from you so well and I have to say,

5:15
I have been loving listening to your podcast and especially people who have had a nonlinear path, their career, it makes me feel a little less alone and a little less weird. No,

5:26
it’s very common, though, I mean, I think in particular is one that people discover sometimes later on I felt like I discovered it later but I really didn’t I mean I, I went from high school into university and I studied kinesiology, for a semester. Yeah, and then I went okay this isn’t what I want to do so and then I you know, and then I figured out that I wanted to do design so

5:48
yeah, tell me your story. So I was in the social service social justice world for the first big part of my adulthood, specifically working with survivors of sexual and domestic violence. And a big part of my job was education so educating other service providers, you know crisis line or shelter or food so that they had a career responses to survivors that they may be working with who were coming to use their resources. So, including, you know, police and kind of city professionals, so the whole gamut, so I did a lot of the education around King County, which I loved, but, you know, honestly, I think I could have done the work forever. It was the. It was really hard to be in a profession that had this overlying scarcity mentality. Never enough people never enough money never enough resources. And just noticing how much that impacted my entire life, even when I wasn’t at work,

6:51
really. And I can imagine I mean, I think people don’t like you or I even think of we were talking about dogs earlier like veterinarians and all those people that, that have to deal with heart hurting issues and incidents and I mean I can’t even imagine how you could, you know, shut yourself off from that,

7:12
it’s, for me it was really interesting because I felt like working directly with clients, was hard, but you know you got to see all this resilience and power, and kind of, you know, so that really wasn’t. What kind of drew me in, it was, it was much more working with nonprofits, they just like yeah you know this kind of air of desperation all the time which I understand, like, that piece just got very hard for me to have that be kind of ruling my psyche all that yeah

7:45
yeah and I can understand that because you’re you’re knowing I guess what resources and things that could be done but there’s just no money to do it. Yes, is that we are kind of thing. Yeah, exactly,

7:54
exactly,

7:55
yeah that’s frustrating,

7:56
so I made a 180, and went and worked at a feminist own sex toy store.

8:04
That is the one ad.

8:05
Yes it was. I have to say, you know, that was really a move on a solely like selfish level, but to get to work with people who were celebrating themselves and other people physically, sexually, was just like, such a sad for my, you know, little damaged system after doing that work for so long, and I ended up managing that store, and that is where I discovered retail design, and you know just the power of you change the display and you change the lighting, and you know maybe change the colors that are around that display and then suddenly those things are flying off the shelf, and just, you know is really fascinating to see kind of the psychology of retail design for sure. Yeah, I had always been the friend who I’m a really bossy person by nature, so I’d always been the friend would come over and be like, You should move that piece of art and those chairs and, you know, but I never considered career in design, until I was at that store and then I was like, this is like a superpower, change the display change a fixture change the lighting, change the graphic, and just like watch people be drawn like these two flowers, what you’re trying to sell and I was like, I’m into this, this is so cool.

9:29
I it’s funny I started my sort of design career and I worked for a retailer too. We have, you know, in the US you guys have Bed Bath and Beyond, yes, we so Canada, we brought in through the Hudson’s Bay Company called home Outfitters and it was literally a copy of that. And so I was doing all those while they were rolling out in Canada and they actually just closed them all, I think last year which was kind of sad but I understand the retail side of it, like speaking that language as well and yeah it is kind of interesting. So it’s

9:57
super fun.

9:58
Yeah, so okay so you get into retail design so sorry I can’t you just ever you want to do retail.

10:03
So then I started school, I started a program that was, you know, supposed to take me three years part time, because I was working full time. Yep. And this was the toothcomb trying blinking on the year 2009 Recession hit while I get in grad school. So, what was supposed to take three years took me six. At one point I had to like just earn money.

10:30
Yeah. Honey, you have to do that too.

10:33
So I had left that toy store and gone into the interior design world and then of course got laid off, and all the giant firms in Seattle, laid off hundreds of people with years more experience than me, and so I went back into retail and worked for another kind of really small business, and got to do their whole renovation and then got to open a pop up store with them so that was super fun, but, you know, retail, working directly for the retailer. I was still a store manager, yeah, yeah, making the design, and I just really wanted to be in the design world so wonderfully lefting got more into firms and all of that sort of stuff.

11:14
Right. And then, and then what happened so then you and then how did you start your own business. Well,

11:19
again not linear, I had started a few times and had you know a few good goes But, even though I had as a retail manager I had managed teams and big budgets and stuff like doing it on your own, it’s just such a different game. And so, you know feeling uncertain and not, not really finding the right structure and then life would happen, and a corporate job would show up with steady pay and insurance and I’m like, oh yes please. I’ll take that for another couple years so I kind of did that off and on for a few years and then honestly I just I had a couple years, 2016 and 17. My dad died, which he had early onset Alzheimer’s so was one of those, we knew it was coming but it was still pretty hard, but he was buried in the national, oh my gosh I’m totally blanking, the military in DC, the military Greenbrier Arlington alright yeah it’s just it takes, it’s a six month process, which you know, so we didn’t bury him for six months, which I don’t recommend.

12:28
There’s no closure,

12:29
no and it was really hard. I mean, again, because we knew he was dying, I didn’t think it was going to be that hard and it really ended up being very hard. So, and then I was diagnosed with cancer, right after that. Yeah, so I had surgery and treatment, and was all better. And, you know, was so grateful for my corporate retail design job that I had and yeah and you know grateful that they gave me space to take care of myself but also I could come into work and work on these really cool projects, and then, you know, after I was healthy again. I was like, What am I doing this is, I’ve wanted to have my own business. I just need to take the plunge. So I left that in the summer of 2019, and I was just going to pick up at the beginning of last year and then COVID hit, which I don’t recommend having a pandemic in your first year business oh no it’s not it’s not helpful.

13:21
No surprisingly Yes, it’s a little curveball that nobody is ever needed to plan for no business plan, No, no, my goodness. Oh my goodness.

13:32
So and I just wasn’t quite established enough to have, you know anything getting me through the beginning of COVID So that was yeah, he was hard.

13:40
I bet, I bet. So what are you are you doing your business, your own business now, like yes, yeah,

13:45
yeah, yeah. Yeah, so things feel like they’ve stabilized and I’m, you know the right kind of clients and projects are showing up right now and, and finally getting to really focus on the online side of things that I want to focus on. Yes, which is kind of a second funnel of my business,

14:03
and is that the workshops is that what Yes.

14:05
Yeah. Yeah. So

14:07
tell us a little bit about your workshops, I’d like to read a few of them but

14:09
yeah so basically in kind of all this murkiness, a friend of mine was, I was currently just working with some retail clients. This was one of the periods that I was trying to do my own business, in the last handful of years, and a friend of mine was working at a community college in the continuing ed department, so people who just kind of want to take one class at a time. So she was always looking for new classes and she’s like, why don’t you come in and teach people how to design a room and I was like, oh, that’s the most brilliant idea ever, because all of my jobs, prior to design had involve teaching

14:44
or training or you know,

14:46
exactly, and I really loved that element, and it had actually made me sad knowing going, I was going into design. And that wasn’t going to be a part of it. So I put this course together at the time it was three weeks it’s now evolved to three months, because all the feedback was like, can you design a house. And I taught it in person it was super fun because again, you know, someone’s individual style is less important to me and I’d have someone in the group who was doing this totally Zen office, and someone else in the group who was doing their living room with this whole Safari theme, you know, and just a how these projects evolved and these people who did not fancy themselves designers like really start to put some stuff together in a way that really was working and

15:35
no, that sounds great, I mean it’s a great idea and as we all know everything is virtual right now so yes

15:39
yeah yeah so I have some workshops that are just kind of, you know when 90 minutes being specific to a room or zone, and then I have a program that will be launching end of February, early March, that’s a three month, how to design one room from floor to ceiling, and we do you know we have the time to do all the space planning, and all the materials selection and all the furniture selection.

16:05
That’s great. Yeah, it’s like a, like a mid level I mean it’s a course and it’s but it’s, it’s more than I think more than a workshop. And yes, you know, not going in to a degree program. Yeah,

16:15
yeah, and it’s really it is all of this is really aimed towards the DIY and client folks. So, you know people who don’t think they can afford a designer or feel like they have enough vision that they don’t really want to design or they just want to figure out how to execute their vision.

16:31
Yeah I was gonna say cuz there’s a lot of, I think, like I’m just thinking about the sort of the market yeah there’s people that are di wires and are like, I can do myself I don’t need help. And then there’s probably like to your point where you’re finding people that are going cable I know what I like and look but I just and I want to do it properly because I always say the biggest thing is, you know, clients just sometimes don’t know what they don’t know

16:52
know exactly. So and I, it’s been interesting for me business wise, because those were a lot of my custom clients initially who like well I’ll just do this and I’ll just do that. And what’s great about offering these courses is I feel like I have a great place to funnel people who are inclined, so that my custom clients are the people who want to do, you know, the big projects with the professionals and all of that

17:20
with full service

17:20
yeah exactly yeah so it’s this nice kind of way to channel people are sure.

17:27
Yeah, cuz a lot of times you know they’ll if they come to you. I remember early in my, my, sort of independent days and I remember having a couple people hire me and I’d be like, Why did you hire me. Yeah, you want you’re basically just kind of, I don’t mean telling me what to do but like you had a vision, you had a hammer and, yeah, and that was yeah and I think a couple of them I had to just say like, we’re done because this like this isn’t working, I’m spinning my wheels you’re spinning your wheels like,

17:53
yeah,

17:53
like there’s no satisfaction from either of us and so having something like that I think is, it’s great that they can learn some of the stuff that they don’t know that they

18:02
know exactly, and get some cheerleading which everybody needs Yeah.

18:08
Yeah that’s true and it’s not just a online course where there’s no, like, go through each module on your own.

18:15
There’s great feedback, like there’s absolutely, Yeah. Yeah, huge, which is huge.

18:21
Yeah and accountability, I’m sure, right.

18:22
Yeah,

18:23
you gotta get this done.

18:24
I think it’s a big piece and it’s that’s the interesting transition to online because when I taught it in person. You know people are committed to showing up and they’re having to bring something to show. So, yeah, every I mean everything has, like you said gone online so that’s the interesting kind of create accountability, but because it’s a virtual world it doesn’t feel the same. Yeah,

18:48
yeah, absolutely. So your tagline or mission statement on your website is that you’re I’m gonna just read it in your. I’m here because I believe everyone deserves a space that feeds their soul and elevates the way they live. I love love love this, so thank you I’ll dive a little bit more into that.

19:04
Yeah, I mean, I definitely have a deep philosophy one that everyone deserves a home, I feel like homes are a right not a privilege, and to everyone deserves a home that is beautiful to them. And that, I think when our homes are beautiful and functioning, they really allow us to rest and recuperate and connect with people that we cherish. And, you know, kind of as we were as it sounds I believe that when that happens, we can each walk back out our front door or these days, go back on our computer and do what it is that we do to make the world a better place, but if we’re exhausted, If you know we’re frustrated by our house if it doesn’t allow us to feed our souls, then we’re not stepping out into the world, being our best selves, and probably creating a little more chaos than good and so I just really, I mean I really have this belief that, you know, homes are made of organic materials they’re on the earth like they are these kind of organic living beings to a degree that need to kind of fluctuate and respond to who we are as we grow emotionally and spiritually and, and I just want that for everybody, You know, I just, like, imagine if everyone had a beautiful, you know, again, their term of beautiful right home to go home to each night, like when the world beautiful.

20:34
Their safety it’s, you know their their point their comfort their place to

20:40
fully relax fully be Converse their bodies and their bodies and, yeah, communion with other people, I mean it’s just, and again, I mean this year especially, all the new things we’ve had to do in our homes, like, no I know we’re all stir crazy but also what a way to discover what a kind of sanctuary your home can be from a world that feels really crazy and chaotic and scary and all of the things, and it’s it’s the ultimate safe place right

21:09
now. Yeah, like it’s yeah, yes, here in Toronto we just went into literally a state of emergency lockdown again, like, big time like they’re, you know you can go out to get groceries, you can go to exercise and go to your job. If you have to like if you don’t can’t work from home, right, like, That’s it, like, and they’re, they’re doing, you know, fines or you’re going to be fine if you’re like, wow, yeah. It’s hardcore like it’s, like, there’s no messing around because No, no, we’ve got to so that I mean, I think, more now than ever, what you’re talking about is people are going to understand and resonate with it more so now because it’s not even, to your point, it’s not even just the aesthetic like oh I don’t like the color or I don’t like the whatever it’s, it’s yeah, it’s how are you feeling in that space is it even from a, from a standpoint of, you know, are you able to work. Yes properly right yeah you’re in a busy household and, you know, you only have one space or something and now you’ve got four or five bodies there that all need to work and have quiet and, you know, it’s, yeah.

22:11
and are you getting good sleep during a pandemic which is creating great anxiety and, yeah, I mean it’s, yeah this year has been so interesting to really think of, I mean just to really drive home for everybody. The impact our homes have on us for sure,

22:27
for sure,

22:28
and with the additional discomfort they can cause if they’re not working right.

22:32
Yeah. Is there any tips or is there anything that you Yeah, especially from maybe some of your workshops and that that you have found as being a good kind of go to for for people living in people that say I want to do something I don’t know with my house like is there any bring plants in or something I

22:49
don’t know. I mean, mine is more, you know, I, one of the things I do with every workshop is have people kind of recall a time where they felt really good in a space that you know if we’re doing a home office in an office or if we’re doing a bedroom in a bedroom, and to really notice the senses and what the qualities were for taste and smell and light and temperature, and how, you know before they go buy a new desk and paint the wall and stuff, how can they create a similar quality of light or, you know, can they have a candle or a diffuser with a similar smell going or, you know, how can they create a similar sense of temperature, and just start to get our senses in a place that feels more soothing for whatever environment they’re working in,

23:44
and I bet you a lot of people have never looked at it that way right

23:47
I’ve never thought that way you know and and again it’s like not huge changes, and as you move forward to make the purchase of the new desk or paint the new wall, you’re kind of grounded in a better sense of how you want that space to feel, and, you know, part of that is going back to retail and, you know, there’s a few years ago, this kind of aha moment of small retailers or hotels or whatever having a signature scent. Again you know the power of smell to evoke a memory. And if you have a really great memory of a certain office, that can be brought back with a smell, why not use that, even if you don’t have control over having the desk size that you really want, like,

24:32
I totally agree with that we actually here in Toronto, we have a woman who’s become a center designer. And I think that’s so

24:40
amazing.

24:41
I know I was like, she told me she does and she’s done some corporate, obviously you have to be careful because of people’s

24:47
sensitivities

24:48
and activities. But I was like, You’re, she’s so it’s so bang on we actually did a couple years ago and it came up on my seat the other day and I was looking at it, we did a scent pairing dinner. So, since it’s so good. It was so fun, and it just might have been like, I’m gonna call her and see if she wants to be on the podcast because, yeah, it was I thought what a brilliant concept, Just because that is one of our senses and smells. I think for a lot of people is like, you know, I smell a fragrance and like if I smell something that my mom used to wear it’s like yes, totally, yeah. So actually, that’s such a great, to your point small little thing that somebody can do, you know they weren’t maybe at some great hotel or they went to a spa they had some fantastic scent, you know, try to recreate that. Yeah.

25:36
Yeah, and it’s, it’s super fun to do that section in the workshops and just have people be like, Whoa, all I need is like some sort of soft velvety thing to touch, and I will be greatly soothe in this environment, like, there you go you know that could be just one throw pillow, and suddenly you’ve changed the game of how you feel in that space.

25:57
That’s amazing. I love, I absolutely love that concept and looking at that from more from like the five senses, I guess really yeah right trying to reach those and then getting those pulling those that extracting them from from the clients to get them to sort of really, you know, dig deep and figure out, oh it is that that I like or it’s that’s what caused why liked that feeling or room or whatever it was, yeah, that’s, that’s really interesting. I

26:24
love it. Yeah, I just did this with two new clients I’m working with and we’re remodeling their kitchen and then I had them each tell me their kind of favorite kitchens story, and to try to address the senses as they’re telling me this story and it just goes, I mean their stories were not did not involve each other they were pre having met each other but they were so evocative and I just felt like I was in the kitchen with them and, and then to see the overlap and similarities of what appealed to both of them about that, like how many people were in the kitchen and how many people were cooking and they both had a big fire element to their kitchens and I’m like, great, this is like, you know, suddenly becoming so clear what your kitchen needs to be based on these two fantastic stories where you told me, You know what the lighting was and what you were smelling and you were both sipping on wines and, you know. Yeah,

27:23
that’s awesome. That is this probably a dumb question, but do you think that your years of being in social work and social work that you’ve been able to know either how to hone in on people’s emotions or figure out how to get those answers out of them. Does that make sense.

27:39
Yes, I mean I think I’m pretty empathic to begin with, which probably is part of what drew me to the social service work, but yeah, I, I do think that honed a lot of it and I mean it’s kind of, you know, I just didn’t. I just did a q1 planning meeting with my team and I asked them all how they wanted to feel when they were doing work for this team and so we, in the slide deck we had one sheet with everyone’s three feeling words, and it’s just, I mean that is my go to for everything because I feel like that is its own language. Yeah, and obviously if I say I want if one of my rules for everyone I work with is they cannot use comfortable because that’s just a given.

28:23
You cannot do it very uncomfortable,

28:25
your living room. I will make it comfy. Put that aside, that’s an odd ask Go ahead. Moving on to other words, like, I just, to me, that helps. It’s just this real clarifier for me, it really helps me be able to visualize. And, you know, kind of put myself in their shoes so that I’m getting to the right place faster rather than I am not someone who can hear like I like blue tiles and gray slate floors, and get it right the first time but I’m

28:58
just gonna say, yeah, there’s this, I, when I present to clients I use what I call them look and feel bored, and it’s kind of like a mood board but it’s the same type of thing, you know, somebody will give me words and give me this and they’ll say we want it to be, you know, contemporary, which, again, like those words are such loose, so. So for you, for you, you’re, you’re pulling it out and I can see like, we just hear you talk about fire and you’re like oh, like you can just start to, You get the design direction starts to right like you start to feel like okay now I know where I’m going with this, and how to move forward.

29:30
Yeah, and I feel like it also helps me clarify where I can push them a little bit outside of their comfort zone to something new. Yep, which I don’t feel nearly as confident doing if, you know, again, we’re talking about blue tiles and slate floor,

29:46
yeah, yeah, that’s such a like it’s like a generic description, yes, you know, and even, you know Pinterest and showing me pictures of what you like. That would that’s helpful but then you’d have to go what do you like about

29:58
this like what exactly and then pulling up

30:00
to your sense like the, the emotions and the words and yes you know that out of it. Yeah. Yeah, that’s amazing.

30:06
I love it

30:07
I love it.

30:08
Yeah, I’m glad I’m finally here after such a like, you know, circuitous path, but

30:15
well I think everything happens for a reason and they’re, you know, you were meant to do that and me, you know, and just not that having, having illnesses and all that, or there’s a path but I think that there is sometimes the struggle is there’s some there’s a reason right there’s

30:31
something. Well, I mean it would have been so easy to stay comfortable in, where I was. Yeah, had I not had to kind of back to back things that were just like, What do you want to do with your life

30:43
like with life. Ultra basic Yeah, yeah, yeah. That’s amazing. I love I love your story and I think it’s great and I love to hear how people end up, you know, in the design world and it’s great stories because a lot of people come from different, different backgrounds and, and a lot of the time it’s some sort of I don’t want to say hardship but there’s something that has pushed them a little. There’s that, you know, kick in the pants kind of thing that’s made them do it. Because to your point, it’s too easy to just sort of stay status quo and, yeah, you know, and there’s never a right time to start a business, no. There’s never a right perfect time to have a kid you just do

31:19
like there’s those exactly

31:20
like life events or there’s never a perfect time so, so I want to end this with my closing questions which is yes I call the interior Inquisition, and these are anything with regards to work or life or however you feel you want to answer them. So, what is the one thing that you think every person should experience in their lives.

31:37
Yeah, my answer is going to be really weird but it’s Greece. And I think, I mean, again, I obviously I’m, you know, very driven by emotions but this year in particular it’s been fascinating to watch people so actively avoid feelings of grief, with all the losses we’ve had, you know, from the very small thing of not being able to go get coffee for a while to death and all of that stuff and, and I just, I really think grief changes you if you let it just kind of make you feel. Yeah, if you feel it, there is something else on the other side of it that I think can be so liberating and powerful and I know it’s scary, but that is truly my wish for everyone is that they could just really let themselves feel it and then get to the other side.

32:26
Yeah, I think that’s so true that the feeling part of it because too many people try to push it down, ignore it, avoid it. Whatever, whatever avoidance mechanism is yes, it’s discomfort and we don’t

32:38
totally like to be there. We don’t have a ton of tools around it and we don’t talk about it well and all of those sorts of things, so you know it’s not an individual’s fault. I mean, that’s our culture. But yeah, we’re all going to face it at some point so learning to.

32:53
Yeah, for sure, absolutely, wisest thing you’ve ever heard someone say,

32:57
this is interesting because the first podcast I listened to of yours when you ask someone that sounds like, oh I know what it is. I think it was an article actually in a design magazine years and years ago but someone said something along the lines of a beautiful room can’t be designed, quickly or, you know, in a couple weeks or whatever they said and I just remember reading it and being like, no so frustrating. And then the more and this was way before an interior design career but the more I do it the more you know, again I want people’s homes to be representative of them and their experiences and our goals and unique to them and that takes time to put together and you know it’s it’s honestly part of why, like the home design shows there’s something about it that just like gets me. I can’t watch them. No I can’t. And everyone is really surprised but I’m like I cannot stay in those kinds of things, because it’s just like the reveal, I mean I love me a transformation. Oh yeah, like that’s super fun in such a like hit of whatever it is adrenaline or or Tonin or whatever but the lack of character to it. Got me and yeah, to have that character takes time, and I think, you know, I remember having a client, we had gotten to the furniture and finish stage of her big remodel, and she was ready to like disregard these chairs that she loved because it was going to take two months to get there. Yeah. Amazon has ruined us all.

34:31
Yeah. Instant instant instant I can get it tomorrow I want it right now right now right now. Yeah. Yeah. And I was into that exact point. You know I’ve had a couple jobs where they’re like, it’s gonna be and it’s like, you know what, it’s your first choice, and it’s your house. Yes. Wait. yes like you will be worth it, you exactly you won’t be disappointed, and like that you

34:52
wait enjoy the anticipation and then enjoy the arrival, and then enjoy that you got what you want it, like Yeah,

35:00
yeah, it’s so true. It’s so true and then even just the creative process of getting to the as the right solution. Right, totally not alone is yet we’re to instantaneous, where you can just do it up on cat, somebody behind that that has to sit exactly, then, think it through and, you know, sort of try to, you know, troubleshoot okay well what about this, what about that and does that work here and you know like there’s all these variables that we have to consider in in in rushing, you know causes errors and not the best work right. So, yeah, I love that that’s that’s absolutely true. And what are three podcasts that you’re currently listening to,

35:37
I mostly listened to political podcast is the truth I stopped listening to.

35:41
I bet you they’re very active right now. Yeah, breaking news. Yeah, yeah,

35:47
I stopped listening to any sort of business related ones, but then just in the last couple weeks I’ve discovered two highly entertaining podcasts, one is in strange woods. Okay, which I thought was gonna be one of those kind of like, like a serial type. Yeah, but it’s a musical. Oh my goodness, but it’s a, you know, kind of, dramatize missing person dead person story, but then everyone breaks out into song and I had no idea that was coming, and it’s delightful. I mean, it’s super good. And then the other one is from now, which is this sci fi story, the years, 2035, and a spaceship returns no the year has to be it’s different. This, I think the spaceship left in 2035, and he was gone for 30 years. According to everyone on earth but he came back minutes later, according to him. And so it’s this whole like what happened, but the sound effects are super good and it’s a couple actors I like who all have Scottish accent so that’s also quite nice and so it’s like a story, it is a story. Yeah, with episodes yeah to speak right yeah, and it’s been delightful, literally I just discovered both of those a couple of weeks ago and it’s been delightful to have something nice to listen to on walks and not just politics.

37:09
Yeah, I think, the is there we say like There’s certain times in your life where you just need certain types of podcasts like we’re where you want to do your point kind of check out, and not be you just be entertained, yes and not be learning or heated up by political stuff, or whatever, right. So I think that’s, that’s, yeah, that’s good because we’re definitely right now I think we could probably stay away from the news for

37:32
even a whole day would be life changing at this point.

37:35
Exactly, because there’s. Who knows what tomorrow. It’s yeah, yeah, I mean I guess you, you are living in the country where most of this is happening so I can I apologize on behalf

37:45
of all Americans, that we are seeing this chaos

37:50
right now so it’s it’s it’s a it’s an interesting study and and I’m sure you know 10 years from now when you know, students are studying this in school, they’re going to be just like, Wow, 2020 and 2021 Yeah, was so messed up. Yeah, what were people thinking. Yeah, crazy. Well thank you so much. He’s really nice chatting with you, delightful. Yeah, it was fun and I love I love your approach to to how you’re working with your, your clients and I think it’s great now more than ever it’s, it’s something that’s super relevant for people to sort of look, look around them and figure out how can we make the space, make them feel more safe and comfortable. Yeah. Well thank you so much.

38:32
Thank you. I really appreciate it.

39:04
Thank you. Wow,I feel so fortunate at times when I get to speak to such great guests and be able to hear their story and learn about how they ended up where they are today and holes is definitely no different. I love her approach to design as well. I love that she really tries to get to the essence of what people want in a space and it’s not just about the aesthetic and the beauty space but how is it going to function and, you know, how is it going to make you feel which I think is is such a great way to really go deep and I think, you know, finding this niche or this niche for her is, I think just, you know how lucky are her clients that get to work with her and you’ll do really get that sort of attention to detail in the sense of really going deep into figuring out what it is that will be the right space for them and and feed their soul if she says, and I love that she had a has a retail background, and then the social the social worker background.

Published by theproductivedesigner

Crystal is the principal of Crystal Collinson Interiors, a full-service design firm specializing in the Design and Decorating of Model Homes, Sales Presentation Centre’s, Condominium amenity spaces and small commercial projects. Crystal & her builderdesigner team work with many of the GTA’s largest home builders.

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