Design Camp Recap

Last week I got to attend the third-ever Design Camp, held in Seattle! It isn't often that these kinds of events come to our normally rainy little corner of the country - I was glad that we had an absolutely gorgeous week to share with our visitors. Design Camp is an educational conference made up of about 120 interior designers (aka "campers") and a ton of top industry professionals ("counselors") who share all kinds of info on business development, trend forecasting, new materials and technologies, and opportunities and niche markets. I happened to win a ticket rather last minute, so I hadn't planned on getting to partake, but I am SO glad that I did! I've been feeling a little lost in the direction to take my business next. After two years, I feel like it's time to ramp up and get more of the jobs that I love working on, and some bigger projects. But I wasn't really sure what steps to take to do so, and not sure how to manage the additional tasks that come with bigger projects. Now I have tons of ideas and a lot of powerpoints to review and take more notes from!

Plus I got to meet some amazing people!

Lori Dennis and Kelli Ellis (both of HGTV fame, plus successful interior designers) are the Design Camp founders! It's truly because of them that Design Camp has such a great spirit of support and education (no snottiness or closed-doors allowed).

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Why yes, this IS me and Million Dollar Decorator Nathan Turner.

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Love that we had some Seattle flavor - my friend and famed blogger Cassandra LaValle of Coco+Kelley talked all about blogging.

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I also met big-wig blogger (and now author) Ronda Rice Carmen of All The Best blog, who stuck around for both days and signed books - her new book is from Rizzoli and called Designers at Home.

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Seattle ladies Cassie Daughtrey and Keri Petersen were my table buddies on day one (Keri's daughter is also a Maggie Rose!). They were speakers on day two and taught us all a ton about staging for real estate sales.

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Me and Keri (on a fabulous Kravet sofa).

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All the wonderful folks at Design Camp Seattle!

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Some of the big changes you'll see  (and won't see, but will be happening behind the scenes!):

1. My rates will be going up.

2. E-decorating will likely be folded into my regular design services, at least for now.

3. A major overhaul of my accounting and project management tools, including new systems for ordering client goods.

4. Working toward more streamlined installs and finding the best teams to bring in to help with this.

5. Outsourcing some of the more tedious work so I can focus my time on design.

6. More in-depth blog posts with design tips (I've been feeling very stuck on these, but lots of ideas brewing now).

7. Opening more accounts at more showrooms and with new vendors to offer the absolute BEST products to my clients.

...and more.

I'm so glad I had the chance to meet these inspiring ladies (and a few gents) to get my butt in gear and get fired up about putting changes in motion that I've been hesitating to take action on. An awesome experience all around.