Guest Blog: Q & A with SHELTER

Part II

Brianne Sanchez brings us a quick Q&A with interior designer and blogger, Julie Richard

Check her site, SHELTER, out!


1. What inspired you to start blogging?

I am constantly scanning the world around me for design inspiration.
I was often eagerly sharing my finds with friends in the design community, so I thought a blog would be a great way to do this on a larger level.  I find it rewarding and inspiring to share my thoughts, finds, and tips with readers. Blogs are also “free press” of sorts.   Who could pass that up?

2.  In your opinion, what are the elements of a good design blog?

Keep it fresh! Show the world something they haven’t seen! Also, keep the ideas fairly simple. A few great images with a brief summary/description or insight can speak volumes. Readers are always intrigued by what is going on realistically in design.  Don’t get me wrong, design magazines are amazing, but seeing a recent/local, budget friendly project or idea executed by a fellow blogger/designer is inspiring.

Keep posts somewhat focused, this will draw a following and will brand {for lack of a better word} your blog. Diversity within your given topic will keep readers coming back for more but on the flip-side having one or two days a week that discuss or feature a certain topic will also do the same. Example: Color of the week and it’s applications.

3. How does blogging fit into your lifestyle/work day?

As a design professional, I am constantly looking for new sources for furniture, lighting, fabric, materials and ideas, so my job directly influences my blogging and vice-versa. If I see a new furniture line, trend etc. while shopping for a client, chances are you’ll be reading about it on my blog in the very near future. I tend to write my blog either early in the morning or later in the evening.

4. Have you gotten any interesting jobs or assignments or made any connections because of your blog that you might not have otherwise?

Absolutely. I’ve gotten some amazing clients. I also receive daily emails from people thanking me for posting, writing, or introducing them to a new artist, idea or piece of architecture.

I’ve also communicated with shop owners, artists and other designers who I would have never been connected with otherwise. To influence and touch people’s lives even in a small way is rewarding. Interacting with fellow design bloggers is also very enjoyable and informative.


5.  Where do you see the future of interior design?

Great design doesn’t have to cost a fortune, nor does it need to be superfluous or wasteful. I think you are going to see the residential design world scaling back a bit. Good design is really about form and function working simultaneously. This may sound obvious but the importance of sustainability will continue to grow, both the design community and consumers are becoming more informed and environmentally responsible. The two notions go hand and hand.

6.  What are some things you have learned in your career that you didn’t know after completing a formal education?

I could name a vast number of things but I’ll keep it concise. I’ve learned how to actually execute, manage and budget both my interior and furniture designs.

You don’t learn how to bring your conceptual ideas to life in school. Every design detail counts. Organization, follow through, communication and documentation are paramount! Seek advice from the professionals you work with on a daily basis, millworkers, electricians, drapery makers etc.  They have a wealth of knowledge to share. Working with them is an education in itself.

7. Where do you find inspiration?

Everywhere! I draw inspiration for both my interior and furniture designs from my surroundings and experiences. Travel, photography, advertising/graphic design, films, clients, students, and nature, are just some of my sources. I’m always scanning and observing. Publications, interior designers {past and present day}, artists, design sites such as 1st, iconic architects {both modern and classical}, fashion and design related blogs are an enormous source of daily inspiration as well.

Some of my daily/weekly/monthly reads include, Elle Decor, House Beautiful, The Boston Globe, Architecture, Veranda, Metropolitan Home, Cookie, {green design},
back issues of the attainable and approachable Cottage Living and Domino, Design New England, Vanity Fair, Coastal Living and a diversity of design blogs.

Words of wisdom: great design is in the details, use a sketch book to explore your ideas. Work for a few firms while you are in school, this way you are building your resume professionally and educationally. If you have the option to study abroad, do so. It will change your life. Be open to suggestions from peers, educators and co-workers. Take risks and enjoy the ride!

Julie Richard

2 responses to “Guest Blog: Q & A with SHELTER

  1. Great post….The importance of sustainability will continue to grow, both the design community and consumers are becoming more informed and environmentally responsible.
    Street Furniture

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