How did you get started as a designer?
Being a mom taught me how to marry style and function by creating spaces that are beautiful, cozy and kid/pet friendly. Once I had achieved that for our own home, I was excited to help others do the same! Prior to having my three kids, I worked as an Art Therapist with women and children. While at home on maternity leave with my third baby, I started to explore the idea of changing careers and turning my passion for interior decorating into a business. I took a few courses, but I would say that I am mostly self-taught, much like my design idols, Shea McGee and Joanna Gaines.
How did you decide on the name Little Nest Design?
I was tucking my kids into bed one night, and I would always say to them, “let’s go and tuck you into your little nest!” which was something my mom used to say to me when I was little. It was an ah-ha moment when I realized it was the perfect business name, and so Little Nest Design was born.
Can you share a memorable moment from your career in design?
Our home was featured on the show Property Brothers! This was 10 years ago now, for one of the earlier seasons of the show. We were the “dream home” for a North Vancouver couple, our house had all of the components on their wish list. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to meet the brothers, but it was thrilling to see our home -which I had lovingly and painstakingly decorated - on their show!
How would you describe your personal style?
I like to compare my design style to my taste in music… I love so many genres! If you are driving in my car with me, we are listening to country music one minute, and R&B the next. I am drawn to many styles from Coastal California to English Cottage. I can definitely say that my style is casual and unfussy, I like to describe it as Organic/Modern/Traditional.
How do you find a balance between style and function?
As much as I love pretty things, I am very practical when it comes to my designs and furniture preferences. Most of my clients also have kids and pets, and it is important to me that they love their home and that it is a place of refuge and comfort. I always have this top of mind when selecting furniture and finishings. For example, performance fabrics in a darker colour to hide dirt, patterned area rugs to hide spills and furniture with storage options. I don’t think you have to compromise style to create family-friendly, functional spaces.
How has your interior style evolved since growing your family?
When I started designing our first home, I was very much into the modern farmhouse style that was trendy at the time. I am still drawn to the character and patina of old heritage houses, but I have really leaned into pairing old charm with a modern aesthetic.
What tips would you offer for someone just getting started with decorating their home?
Everyone hates the “B” word – budget, but I think it’s important to come up with a budget, and then be realistic with your decorating goals. If you are feeling overwhelmed, start by prioritizing the spaces where you spend the majority of your time. Of course, I can’t help but advocate for the many benefits that come from working with an Interior Designer! I recognize that it is an investment to hire someone to help with your decorating project, but having a professional to guide and organize the process can prevent costly mistakes and save you money when purchasing furniture and accessories. Many designers like myself are eligible for trade discounts (Urban Barn has a great Trade Program!) and share a portion of their discounts with their clients. This can greatly offset the cost of the design hours.
What do you love about Urban Barn furniture & décor?
Urban Barn is a go-to resource for me when I am designing a room for my clients. The furniture is comfortable and stylish, and there are many options to choose from. It can literally be one-stop shopping because I can source everything from furniture to artwork to styling accessories all in one place. This is convenient for me and my clients! I also appreciate the wonderful customer service and accessible price-point.
What are some of your favourite finds at Urban Barn?
It has become a bit of a running joke at my local store about my love of the Antonio Sofa. I have used it in several projects because it is such a comfortable and well-made sofa. I actually have my sights on one for our family room! Another repeat performer is the Callie Dining Chair. I have used that chair in several projects and always recommend it. It’s so comfortable and stylish! Same goes for the Callie Counter Stools. I love the wide range of products available at Urban Barn and I shop them all! From furniture pieces to accessories, I never leave the store empty-handed.
Is there a design quote you live by?
“Some people look for a beautiful place, others make a place beautiful” - Hazrat Inayat Khan. I think this resonates with me because I like the idea that there is potential in every place, and I am always striving to make each space I work on as beautiful as possible.
What inspires you lately?
I am very much inspired by nature and the landscape around me - I feel so lucky to live close to the North Shore mountains where I hike with my dogs almost every day. You will see organic elements and nods to nature in every room of my house, from lots of greenery to landscape artwork on the walls. I also spend a great deal of time reading design blogs and watching design content on Netflix and HGTV.
Is there a signature style or design detail you’ve become known for?
I think I have become known not necessarily for a particular style, but for the niche that I work with: families! I love kids, pets and all the hustle and bustle that comes with family life, it makes me feel right at home. Are your kids interested in design and want to have some input? Adorable! Does your dog want to sit in my lap during our design meeting? Bring it on. Making a space look good is one thing, but knowing how to make it look pretty AND functional, that’s where I shine!