His name was Horace. He was the regional manager I interviewed with for my first design job.
The design test followed the first interview: One page was a drawn-to-scale room with openings and fixed elements in place. The other page was a thumbnail sketch of people who lived there, what this room was about, and the directions:
- Position and draw in all furniture and furnishings (rugs, lighting, etc)
- Select specifics from the 8K s/f showroom including wallpaper, art, upholstery, and drapery fabrics
- Set it up and present it to would-be homeowners aka Horace and Barbara, the store manager.
My naivete and bravado evaporated. Six hours later I left, feeling defeated and exhausted, vowing never to return again. No one could have been more surprised than I when he called back to offer me a job.
He was kind, yet to the point: “Yes…you need some work, but….”. Then ” you made us see it.”
Didn’t connect the dots back then, but unconsciously those last 5 words became my career’s foundation, and it’s North Star.
And over the years I realized those same words spoke to the hopes and fears of anyone who ever froze in front of a paint sample wall. Of every HGTV junkie. That “you made us see it” went on to ease the mind of serial shoppers/returners, and of everyone who’s made a decision they ended up not liking. Then sentenced themselves to just live with it, while continuing to self-flagellate.
Time is fleeting, and our spaces are precious. There’s a lot of pressure to choose right.
- Homeowners looking to refresh, re-work or re-invent their space are challenged not to let how they’ve always done things be the default.
- New or potential homebuyers have to first absorb a space, then try to download their needs into it, while everyone elses’ opinions hoover, while dollar signs are nipping at their heels.
Being able to ‘see something’, to visualize, is like any other skill. If you have it, great. If not, follow Dan Gookin’s model: Don’t waste precious mojo ruing what you don’t have, and stop worrying about being judged. Seek what you need so you can make good decisions and get on with your life!
Having worked with thousands and thousands of Westchester County NY homeowners and their properties I’ve seen first-hand how so often someone’s best choices are already within. And got to share their wonder, joy, and relief when it all comes together. And yes, even after all these years, “you made us see it” is still the best compliment I get from buyer and design clients.
Buyer consults and design consults with The Refreshed Home put tools in your hands, period.
It starts with conversation so I can understand what you do see, and where/how you feel stuck. Then expertise, options, and info is shared to help untangle your brain, get you un-stuck, and moving forward.
While EMOTIONALLY we’re 1000% vested in you choosing well and being happy, there’s no bias or underlying agenda in buyer or design consults. TRH is not financially vested in your taking any one path. Not in your buying any one house, hiring any specific painter, or shopping at any particular location.
We work in 2 steps: consults, and implementation. Underscoring that so often your good choices are within, about 75% of clients find a little one-to-one time is all they need to get on the right path.
The real estate market here in Westchester County continues to keep us all on our toes. Wistful sellers yearn for 20/20 vision and battered buyers still getting battered. And homeowners are re-thinking upgrading and their exit strategy. Need help getting your bearings? Let’s talk!