The Chaise Lounge

Interior Design and Proactive Marketing with Pamela Durkin | S30E13

Welcome once again to the Chaise Lounge Podcast. It has been a great honor to speak to so many talented and passionate designers over the course of the show. To close out our 30th Season, Nick May sits down with interior designer and marketing specialist Pamela Durkin.

Pam’s design career began with the usual wide variety of clients and projects. Over the years, her favorite types of projects became increasingly more common. Not wanting to let go of this momentum, Pam set out to study marketing strategies in the world of design. She found that many designers do not pay enough attention to their own marketing; some do not take full advantage of digital tools, and others struggle to decline unfulfilling projects. Today, with 30 years of design experience, Pamela assists other designers in elevating their business through effective marketing tactics. It’s not just about making more money. It’s about improving your clientele and making your job more blissful.

You can check out Pamela’s portfolio and marketing services on her website, pamela-durkin.com. Also, be sure to follow her on instagram @pameladurkin

We all talk about how design is a luxury service, and how we're going to take great care of our clients. But how do you show somebody that before you've been hired? How do you say 'I'm going to take great care of you'?

Chaise Lounge Updates

 Coast to Coast Design is back baby! Give it a listen to learn about just how many ways there are to run a design business.

 

Resources

Upcoming Markets

High Point Market – October 22 – 26, 2022

Wrap Up

If you would like to hear more episodes, please visit us on iTunes, Spotify or your favorite podcasting app! We’d love it if you post a review, you may even hear your review read live on our next podcast. Also, find The Chaise Lounge on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. With that said, keep dreaming big, and keep designing a great design business. See ya!

Alex Alonso of Mr. Alex Tate Design: Not a Firm, But a Studio | S30E12

Hello! Welcome once again to the Chaise Lounge! This week, Nick May sits down with Alex Alonso, a designer and proud leader of a studio in Miami, Florida!

Throughout his life, Alex has experimented with many different interests. He initially pursued engineering, then switched to Spanish Literature. Starting from his senior year, Alex worked and developed in the entertainment industry. One of his friends invited him to start a small studio together, a venture that wouldn’t last long. Feeling that their dynamic could not work with them apart, Alex closed that studio and started his own from scratch. He worked heavily on establishing the identity of his solo studio, building up a strong portfolio, and refining his branding.

Alex emphasizes that Mr. Alex Tate is not a firm – cold, impersonal, even intimidating – but a studio; an active working and learning environment. He wants to take the client on a journey to learn and explore together, and believes in being knowledgeable rather than putting up an image. For this reason, Alex chose not to name the studio after himself. He acknowledges that he works with a team, and that they are an important part of the experience.

Be sure to check out Mr. Alex Tate’s website mralextate.com, and follow the team on Instagram @mralextate

I took a whole year... to make sure that when I launched, I knew exactly how I would feel more comfortable engaging with clients and contractors. It was a year of learning, putting my head down the path of not just designing beautiful things, but [also] business. Because at the end of the day, it's a business.

Chaise Lounge Updates

 Coast to Coast Design is back baby! Give it a listen to learn about just how many ways there are to run a design business.

 

Resources

Upcoming Markets

High Point Market – October 22 – 26, 2022

Wrap Up

If you would like to hear more episodes, please visit us on iTunes, Spotify or your favorite podcasting app! We’d love it if you post a review, you may even hear your review read live on our next podcast. Also, find The Chaise Lounge on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. With that said, keep dreaming big, and keep designing a great design business. See ya!

French Designer and Architect Julien Legeard: Discovering Beauty | S30E11

Welcome once again to the Chaise Lounge Podcast! This week, Nick May sits down with Julien Legeard, a residential and hospitality designer with a powerhouse team in Miami.

Julien was born and raised in France. He studied business in university to extend his range of possibilities for a successful career. His interest in the field diminished, but he discovered a passion for craftsmanship, a fascination with people who strive to be exceptional, and an interest in architecture and design. Much to our surprise, Julien did not receive formal education in architecture or design. He educated himself working for several companies in high-end residential projects, learning the ins and outs of structural design from raw experience. After years of developing skills, Julien started his own firm, Legeard Studio, and works in residential and hospitality.

Legeard Studio’s team of talented designers from all over the world provide a richness to the experience for clients. To Julien, the most exciting thing of the job is understanding a client’s vision and making it a reality. He is proud and thankful of his team for their accomplishments, and hopes to take the public on a journey to discover beauty.

You can find Legeard Studio’s work on their site, legeardstudio.com, and follow Julien on Instagram @legeardstudio

The success of a good design-architectural studio is to have every-day people that are happy to work for you. And once you have that, it's easier to do those difficult projects

Chaise Lounge Updates

 Coast to Coast Design is back baby! Give it a listen to learn about just how many ways there are to run a design business.

 

Resources

Upcoming Markets

High Point Market – October 22-26, 2022

Wrap Up

If you would like to hear more episodes, please visit us on iTunes, Spotify or your favorite podcasting app! We’d love it if you post a review, you may even hear your review read live on our next podcast. Also, find The Chaise Lounge on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. With that said, keep dreaming big, and keep designing a great design business. See ya!

Miami’s Fernando Alvarez of Le Jeune Upholstery | S30E10

Welcome back to the Chaise Lounge Podcast! This week, Nick May chats with a designer, but not an interior designer. Fernando Alvarez and his family own an upholstery business that has existed since the 1960’s: Le Jeune Upholstery.

Fernando’s parents, Consuelo and Osmundo immigrated to Miami from Cuba. They opened a furniture upholstery business, working from sunrise to sunset for several years. As the business grew, they opened a second location, followed by a third one a decade later. Today, Le Jeune is operated by Fernando and his brothers Alex and Gerry. Each brother takes charge of a separate division of the company – sales, marketing, and design – and incorporates order and passion, following the steps of Consuelo and Osmundo.

Fernando puts his engineering experience to use when designing furniture. He is very technical when approaching his craft. He draws sketches of the furniture and patterns, takes scale and proportions into consideration, asks his clients about colors, where the piece will be placed in their home – and that’s before he actually builds the piece. Everything the brothers do is done in-house, hand-made from start to finish. From chairs to sofas to footrests, Le Jeune exemplifies the art and science of designing and making furniture.

Check out Fernando’s work on their website lejeuneupholstery.com, and be sure to follow them on Instagram @le_jeune_upholstery

[Our parents'] work ethic is the most important thing that was instilled in us. Work hard, be serious.. the service part is very big. We're there for the customer.

Chaise Lounge Updates

 Coast to Coast Design is back baby! Give it a listen to learn about just how many ways there are to run a design business.

 

Resources

Upcoming Markets

High Point Market – October 22 – 26, 2022

Wrap Up

If you would like to hear more episodes, please visit us on iTunes, Spotify or your favorite podcasting app! We’d love it if you post a review, you may even hear your review read live on our next podcast. Also, find The Chaise Lounge on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. With that said, keep dreaming big, and keep designing a great design business. See ya!

Kate Lester Returns: Bigger And Stronger | S30E9

Welcome! In this week’s Chaise Lounge, Nick May sits down with a returning guest: interior designer Kate Lester!

In her previous appearance, Kate walked us through her story of how she worked to become an interior designer and business woman.  A few years have passed since then, and despite the odds, she has not slowed down one bit. Covid caused many of her employees to leave; staff turnover remained unbearably high for a while. Kate picked herself up by the bootstraps and pushed on. Once the dust settled, she rebuilt her team and established procedures to put the business back on track. Kate Lester Interiors now has, not one, but two retail locations. She also opened an online shop, and even an online education platform called Home Skool! In case that is not enough, Kate will make her first visit to Market, where she will present the world with an exciting announcement!

Do not miss out! Be sure to follow Kate on Instagram @klinteriors, and check out her stunning portfolio on her website katelesterinteriors.com

 

It was really eye-opening for me to remember [to have] procedures and roles and handbooks... so that when you have to re-staff in a hurry, you have some outlines and guides in place.

Chaise Lounge Updates

 Coast to Coast Design is back baby! Give it a listen to learn about just how many ways there are to run a design business.

 

Resources

Upcoming Markets

High Point Market – October 22 – 26, 2022

Wrap Up

If you would like to hear more episodes, please visit us on iTunes, Spotify or your favorite podcasting app! We’d love it if you post a review, you may even hear your review read live on our next podcast. Also, find The Chaise Lounge on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. With that said, keep dreaming big, and keep designing a great design business. See ya!

Up-And-Coming New York Residential Designer Todd Raymond + Design Coach & Author Gail Doby | S30E8

Hello, and welcome to the Chaise Lounge! Today we have a double-feature episode for your. This week Nick May sits down with Todd Raymond, a young residential designer on the rise. Furthermore, Nick catches up with our dear friend Gail Doby.

Todd’s interest in design began in his childhood, when his grandmother gifted him an AD magazine. Growing up, he faced many obstacles that prevented him from studying architecture, as well as other endeavors that caught his interest. After many years of distractions, Todd returned to college go pursue a career in architecture. He went on to work on several design firms and participate in ambitious projects. This experience gave him the confidence to open his own firm, Studio Todd Raymond.

Todd is big on networking to market himself. He will seize any opportunity to form a connection that can lead to a successful path. One of his focus points is the customer experience, as great service allows for loyal clients. To help in making that experience flow, Todd makes sure to be transparent about his prices and the client’s budget; he is not afraid of discussing the money side of business. As he says, even the multi-billionaire customer has an amount they’re willing to spend.

Be sure to follow Todd on Instagram @studiotoddraymond, and check his developing portfolio at studiotoddraymond.com


Gail Doby, CEO of Gail Doby Coaching & Consulting, returns with a call-to-action. Some of the biggest hurdles for designers, especially after Covid, are setting fees, salaries, and competing for talent. To address these issues, Gail invites you to participate in her 2022 Interior Designers Survey on Fees, Salaries and Competing for Talent

We want people to understand us aesthetically, [and] recognize and recommend us because we are hospitality-driven firm. We want to make sure that the client experience is really top-notch.

Chaise Lounge Updates

 Coast to Coast Design is back baby! Give it a listen to learn about just how many ways there are to run a design business.

 

Resources

Upcoming Markets

High Point Market – October 22 – 26, 2022

Wrap Up

If you would like to hear more episodes, please visit us on iTunes, Spotify or your favorite podcasting app! We’d love it if you post a review, you may even hear your review read live on our next podcast. Also, find The Chaise Lounge on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. With that said, keep dreaming big, and keep designing a great design business. See ya!

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