Fresh, accessible and affordable—that's interior stylist Amy Lenahan's approach to design. It's also the philosophy behind Design I Interiors, Amy's Chicago-based design company. Nate talks to Amy about her business and her goal to bring good design to people living on a budget.
Amy says the concept for her business grew from what she saw as a real need for affordable design services. "I had all these friends who felt the same way," she says. "They had spaces, they had limited budgets, they would love to hire an interior designer, but they felt like they couldn't afford it."
So Amy set out to do what she knew she does best: make a lot out of a little. By shopping at big box stores and other affordable retailers, Amy says her business achieves a great look for clients without a big price tag. To keep her services even more affordable, Amy says she charges a flat fee. Price transparency is essential, she says. "I wanted it all to be really upfront," Amy says.
Nate says Amy's open approach to working with clients is a good strategy for success. No matter how much you're paying, he says honesty will ensure that you get the best work from the professionals you hire. "It is your job to tell them exactly how you want to live," Nate says. "Don't try to fake them out, don't try to act rich if you're not rich, don't try to act elegant if you live casually. Really communicate honestly and truthfully what you do."