Not going to lie; I’m pretty excited. It’s official: I’m finishing my Bachelor of Interior Design starting this Fall through Yorkville University. For those of you that don’t know, I’ll catch you up to speed. In 2014, I was accepted into Lakeland College’s Interior Design program. Continue reading
To say that I’m excited would be an understatement. Exactly this time last year I had finished my final project in my Interior Design program. Our school had given our class a project within the school: To redesign the college bar. My three girl friends and I worked an uncountable amount of hours redesigning the space – Our ideas bounced off each other and grew into this incredible dream. If you haven’t read my original post about this project, I would recommend you do so, because it is chalked full of our design concept photos and this post is about how I got to go see the space all finished!
I had been texting my teacher asking how she had been doing when she told me that Spurs was done. How could such a simple text be so flipping exciting?!!?! Spurs was the very first project my friends and I had the opportunity or pouring our time and energy into knowing that it had a chance at becoming reality. They explained that Spurs was in need of a major redesign because they were losing money and the space wasn’t being used by the students as they hoped it would be. When my teacher text me she said, “Guess what was profitable this year???” I was over the moon. When our class had first been given this project, it was explained that all of the designs would be presented to the school and one design would be chosen to redo Spurs. My friends and I’s design had been selected by the school board and would be completed over the next two years in a series of phases. We had created a list of problems with the current Spurs (other than it not being profitable). From there we made a list of solutions to those problems and went to work. Interior design is a job that no one notices unless it is done wrong – then everyone notices. It was obvious that this redesign of Spurs would test us as designers to see if we really could solve design problems on our own and execute them efficiently. I finally got to go see part of the finished design that we had spent so many all-nighters in the computer lab working on drawings.
As a group we decided that we wanted the new Spurs should be industrial and rustic. Our concept was to blend all of the school’s trades and agriculture programs into one space specifically for the students. But what better way to create a space for the students than the include the other sections of the school in the design process?? As we worked on the design we went to the trades and sourced materials and created designs they would be able to do themselves. That way, should our design be chosen, this would be a “Bragging Rights” spaces for every one! Our electrical and welding trades would make all of the light fixtures, lighting details and metal furniture pieces, the carpentry tradesmen would do all of the mill-work, tables, etc. obviously the interior design trades would do the design the agriculture students would provide tons of materials for decor, and wood refacing accent walls from the barns, etc.
It was so cool to stand in a space I had previously been imagining and only seeing through the eyes of 3D modeling and AutoCAD. It was the first time that I had been able to stand in a building, see all of the flaws and been given the opportunity to come up with a solution. To then stand in the same space afterwards was just such an unreal feeling. In all honesty, I always knew I loved interior design and the thought of being able to change a space and solve problems. But this was the first time I was ever able to DO that and ACT on those loves and interests. I can’t wait to grow in this field: to learn more and to have more moments like this with other talented trades and designers!
Keep doing what you love and documenting each milestone – Looking back at your accomplishments is the greatest way to make sure you continue growing and learning.
– Stay Satisfied
A few years ago I had the opportunity to go bungee jumping! At the time I was living on Thetis Island in BC, Canada – There aren’t many places people can go bungee jumping in the flat prairies of Saskatchewan. Obviously, I was thrilled at the chance to jump off somewhere of high altitude! We had found out a couple months prior to the jump day; I was so excited I called my family back home to tell them. “ABSOLUTELY NOT.” My Mom stated. As I listened as to my parents explain why bungee jumping is not the brightest idea, I got more excited about the event.
The day finally came where my friends and I would all hop in a giant 15 passenger van and drive a few hours to the bridge we would all willingly jump off of. I had decided to not tell my parents until after I had jumped. A couple weeks previous to this glorious moment, I had spent the weekend at my Aunt and Uncle’s place. While I was there hangin out with the crew, I told them about my plan. The catch was that I was too young at the time to sign the waiver for myself…. so I asked my Aunt to sign the waiver for me. I had brought the forms with me and she agreed that as long as I wouldn’t die, she would sign.
In all honesty, when I look back at this adventure, I relate to Rapunzel from Disney’s: Tangled. “I CAN’T BELIEVE I DID THIS!!!” As we were driving we took a quick pit stop at Tim Horton’s – everyone was getting snacks and coffee but there was no way I was able to consume anything! I was way to excited!! Once we finally got to the bridge, we walked through the forest to the bridge and up what felt like a million stairs. With each step I felt my palms sweating and my heart racing. I kept looking up to the top of the bridge where the stairs finally ended and I couldn’t believe what I was about to do!
Walking across the bridge to the center where we would soon jump off, I looked over the side and saw the river below. My eyes were wide like coconuts and I was grinning ear to ear. I felt like life was happening in slow motion. The bungee jumping team came and gave us the safety low-down but I did not hear a word they said. I was getting so excited. I watched as my friends one by one had their ankles tied and jumped off the bridge. It was incredible to even just watch someone else jump! When my turn finally came they opened the gate, sat me down and began to tie my feet with the bungee cord. My heart was beating so fast I swear I could see it pounding in my chest. Before I waddled out to the ledge, I texted a photo of the ledge to my Mom with the message, “Guess what I’m doing today”. Then gave my phone to the jump team and made my way to the ledge.
It’s incredible, even though I had previously looked over the edge of the bridge just minutes ago, it looked so much higher with my ankles tied, toes over the edge and no banister in front of me. I stood on the ledge. For a really long time. The 2 minutes felt like a decade. It wasn’t until my friends watching starting counting down, “10 – 9 – 8 – 7” they yelled. I slowly raised my hands above my head, “6 – 5 – 4” I closed my eyes, “3 – 2” I slowly tilted forward, “1!” My body fell. I couldn’t breath the feeling of free fall engulfed me.
So many people say that they would not be able to bungee jump because their back wouldn’t be able to take the snap back once the whole bungee cord is stretched out. I’m happy to tell you that there was absolutely no snap back because when you jump, the cord slowly stretches out and slowly retracts while you are in the air. Even after my jump I had no light-headedness. As I fell and bounced up all I could do was scream and laugh – This was AMAZING.
As I hung upside-down, I could only giggle. I wanted to jump again and again! I was vibrating I was so happy. They slowly lowered me to a trampoline floating on the river. As they untied me and we made our way to the river edge, I continued to watch the rest of my friends jump from the bridge screaming with joy. We all wanted to jump multiple times but unfortunately there was only enough time for one jump per person.
I hope to one day bungee jump the Grand Canyon – I think it would be an incredible experience now that I’ve tried [and loved] bungee jumping off this bridge!
– Stay Satisfied
I have had long blonde locks my whole life. Until I cut it all off not even three years ago and got the pixie cut I’ve wanted for years. Although I wanted a pixie for years, almost everyone told me that I would absolutely hate myself after I cut it all off. Even still, I couldn’t stop that nagging feeling of wanting to chop it all off! I was in my last couple months of Interior Design and one random night I decided I was going to do it. I was going to cut all my hair off. The next day at school I asked one of my girl friends if she could hook me up with her hairdresser in town – because I obviously didn’t have one. A couple hours later the appointment was booked and I was ecstatic! I didn’t tell anyone except for my friends who also demanded to come with me so that I wouldn’t back out. Later that afternoon I called my sister because I had to tell someone from home – it was too much to keep to myself! “YEEESSSSSSS DO IT!” I remember my sister encouraging me over the phone when I told her. “I won’t tell anyone – you should just come home for the Easter weekend and see what people’s reaction is!” Brilliant. So I decided not to tel anyone else.
However, I did end up caving and telling my Dad over the phone just before I left to go get it cut because I was so excited. “Mmmmk, well I guess do what you want – it’s just hair.” My Dad told me, ” Have you told your Mom?” he asked.
I laughed, “No I haven’t told Mom – she’s the one that doesn’t want me to get it cut off the most!”
“No, no, no – you have to call her and tell her! Because, if you get it cut and just come home without saying anything; she’s going to see you and pretend to love it. Then, when we are going to bed that night she’ll ask me if I knew about this and I’ll have to say yes!”
Valid. So in order to keep my Dad out of the dog house, I called my Mom on the drive to the hair dresser, “Mom…..” “What…?” “I have a hair appointment booked.” “NO!!! No! No! Don’t do it!” she screamed. I laughed and told her that it was too late- I was excited and on my way there.
When I got to the hairdresser, she took one look at me and refused to cut my hair. “No way woman! I’m not cutting all your hair off! I am not dealing with you crying in my chair 10 minutes from now!”
“But this is what I want! Trust me!” I remember telling her.
“Nope – I’ve been caught in this situation before and last time it was horrible. I’m not doing it.” She argued.
“Well then give me the scissors and let me hack it off, then you’ll have to fix it.” Her eyes widened; she realized that I legitimately wanted a pixie cut and grabbed a cape. She sat me down in the chair.
“Are you sure?” she asked.
She put the cape around me and pulled my hair back into a long thick braid.
“Are you sure?”
She held the scissors open next to my braid.
“Are you sure you are sure???”
She started to clip. I could feel the hair being cut away.
I reached back and felt nothing. I was SO HAPPY! The hair dresser was laughing, my friends were in shock that I actually followed through and I was beaming. After cutting off a 16 inch braid she buzzed and clipped the rest of my head into the pixie I always wanted. My head felt so light. I was so weird to shake my head and not feel my hair whip to the left or right. I had a bare neck….
What was awesome, is that after she finished cutting my hair she squirt the gel in my hand and showed me how to style my own hair right there in the salon! I had been watching YouTube videos all week about how to style a pixie but this was fantastic! I loved my new hair!
To be honest, it’s crazy to think that this was only a couple years ago – sometimes I see photos of myself with long hair and I don’t recognize myself. Classes were wonderful the next day. My friends that came with me didn’t say a word to anyone. When I showed up to classes the next morning one my profs introduced himself. I enjoyed seeing everyone’s faces drop and hearing everyone’s reaction. I had finally gotten my pixie cut and donated 16 inches of my hair to cancer patients. Guys, there are a lot of things in life that God has given us the freedom to do simply out of joy. I want to encourage you to live your life on a limb. Have fun with God and do things you’ve always wanted to do – God gave us this life to be lived in the fullest through Him. Don’t hold back and be free!
– Stay Satisfied
This lady is one of my best friends.
I remember running around when we were little, pretending to be princesses together with plastic crowns and way too much glitter On her graduation day, I was able to click the moment where she truly was a princess. My sister graduated this Spring 2017 and I was so lucky to capture a couple moments of her big day of success and celebration!
You are such a beautiful woman – Inside and Out
Having our brother as her grad escort was so much fun!
Seriously though… the details in this dress… her head band… earrings… lipstick…. She’s perfect ❤
I’m cheering you on lady as you approach this next exciting chapter ahead and all that God has in store for you!
Thanks for letting me run around taking photos of you like a crazy woman!
[ May • 2017]
One of my favorite projects from Interior Design school was probably the retail project at the very end of the program. We studied residential design for the first year, and tackled commercial design in the second year. When I was 15 my very first job was in a flower shop and I adored it. When I first started, I didn’t think of it any more than a job to make money and save for my future little green VW Buggy – but the longer I worked there and the more I learned about floral design, I saw myself becoming a florist professionally more and more! Now that I’m in Interior Design, I though it’d be ultra cool to design my own future flower shop! I have always loved the word “Alchemy” I don’t really know why… I like the shape my mouth makes when I say it and I enjoy hearing that word… it’s weird.
“A form of Renaissance chemistry concerned primarily on discovering a universal solvent and Elixir of Life. Or a magical process of transforming common forms into things of great value.”
My inspiration for my future flower shop was old English castles, waterfalls and redwood tree forests. I loved how these three things seemed to create the settling for a fairy tale! Essentially, I wanted Alchemy Florists to be a flower shop inspired by Mother Nature; bringing elements from the garden like fresh plants and running water, rough woods and a bright sky into the store. My goal would be to create a way to make floral arrangements a part of everyday life as well as make special events unique and brilliant. With the design of the flower shop, I wanted to blur the lines between indoor and outdoor; allowing people to enjoy flowers and plants all year round! This is totally real dream of mine – I don’t know if I’ll ever achieve it, but who knows where life may take me.
Our assignment was to design a mall location store. The rest was only limited by our imagination. I was ecstatic! As my profs went through the requirements, guidelines and design rules I was already sketching my ideas down hoping to put them on paper before they got away! As soon as class ended, I felt like I was a racehorse bursting out of the gate – God was giving me so much inspiration! I thought this would be a fun project, also because I worked in a couple flower shops for several years. I knew things that worked, I remembered things that definitely did not work and there were design ideas I thought would’ve made work more efficient or practical – I was looking forward to developing, eliminating and creating a potential flower shop for myself in the future.
Getting a floor plan down was the first step and envisioning what shoppers might see on the exterior.
It was all coming together! I wanted the logo to be simple and organic.
As part of the project we had to compile a complete specification sheet for our store including all of the materials and finishes, budget, floor Auto-CAD (ACAD) plans, electrical ACAD plans, + structural ACAD plans. There was a lot of work, but this was fun for me because I was a job that I related to and would want to work in myself! Below would be the exterior of the mall shop – it would be located on the corner which would allow shoppers to access from the side as well as the front. Along the hallway, there would be a window for convenient window shopping of fresh flowers and arrangements in the cooler.
The ceiling of the flower shop, consists of LED light panels with a sky image. These lights would cast a soft glow through out the entire store to make it feel as it the shop was actually located outdoors. The suspended ceiling would have a pergola grid to hide the metal grid support system, which would enhance the indoor-outdoor experience.
In the center of Alchemy Florists would be a fresh plant wall. The pillar would support plant life in the store without maintenance. The pillar offers privacy to the consultation and work areas in the back from shoppers passing by.
The view of the front desk for floral wrapping, A water feature continues the indoor-outdoor experience and allows shoppers to hear the sound of running water as they walk past Alchemy Florists.
A walk-in cooler allows shoppers to go in and pick the arrangement they want. Each floral design would sit on a stone Lazy-Susan which would allow them to view 360 degrees of the arrangement without needing to handle it. There would also be plants, gifts, and vases for shoppers to add to their order.
Standing behind the front desk looking out into the flower shop.
The consultation space for clients to meet one on one with the floral designers for custom work.
The work center in the back. A large island with space to walk all the way around and full of storage areas underneath.
The front shelf doubles as a storage shelf in the back to hold standard vases and designing materials. A large sink provides easy clean up and watering.
The extra deep counters around the island provide practical work space for designers’ fresh flowers, cutting knives, floral waste, and finished design work.
I really enjoyed this project! It took 100+ hours of design research, concept building, product searching, 3D computer modeling, Auto CAD drawings and photo shop to put the dream together but it was well worth it in the end! Maybe one day it will become real life!
Ok so to bring you up to date: I moved back to Regina, Saskatchewan. I completed my Interior Design Practicum at Ambiente Interiors. I was not hired. I am currently jobless. You would think that I’d be more stressed about that last fact…. but I’m not… sooooo…? These past few months have been an absolute whirlwind! However, God speaks to us in the whisper of the wind and that has been SO incredible as I watch as God’s Hand molds my life day by day, everyday whispering, “Just watch and see what I am about to do…” I moved back to Regina at the end of April and began my internship shortly after coming home – it felt great to be working in the field that I love. Remember last summer, when I was working at the design store? I was usually on the sales floor helping clients with high end light fixtures and furniture, luxury plumbing fixtures like claw-foot bath tubs, solid marble sinks, and gold faucets, etc. My job last summer was really fun and I learned SO much. Working in the design store gave me knowledge about lighting, plumbing and furniture that I would never have gained at school. Ambiente Interiors was a completely different experience. I love, love, loved working at a design firm! Ambiente was right up my alley; a small, high end design firm that does both residential and commercial design across Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. I worked with two other, wonderful designers and several tradesmen that were experts in their fields.
As you know, I went to Lakeland College, which is an NKBA accredited college in Vermillion, Alberta and at the end of the two year diploma program, students must complete a practicum with a qualifying design firm anywhere in Canada in order to graduate. So, I chose to work with Ambiente and they were gracious enough to accept me. The practicum experience for me, was phenomenal. It gave me the opportunity to stretch myself and see what I could do in the real world. I was excited to be working with professionals that had experience and knowledge in the field of work that I was pursuing. It is one thing to study interior design at school: in the studio and computer labs, however, it was so much more valuable for me to enforce what I had learned at school in current projects. I was excited for the opportunities I might get to prove myself that I am capable and good enough to succeed in Interior Design. I graduated my program with honors and I am proud of that. However, it’s one thing to earn an A+ on a project in school and an entirely different task to take a real client’s project and design something they are just as excited about as you are. You know what I’m saying? I was looking forward to real clients, with real limitations, real budgets, stubborn likes and dislikes, etc. While in school, my projects usually didn’t have any limitations as a project would have in real life. So you can see why I was nervous but also ecstatic to try myself out in a real project. While working with Ambiente Interiors, my employer took me along to site measurements, design showrooms, showed me current building projects, included me in most client consultations and product representative meetings, etc. She let me draw my own designs and pitch them to clients, she allowed me to pick materials and correspond with the clients and trades-workers directly! For me, that was huge! A lot of these things were taught while I was in classes, but to experience those things gave me the opportunity to ask questions that I would not have thought of in class. For example, in class we learned how to draw details of custom cabinetry but meeting the carpenter that was going to be building my design allowed me to ask him questions that I would not have thought of and also for him to ask me questions that I hadn’t considered either. It was an awesome learning curve. 0 to 100 so fast!
One thing that I loved about my boss including me in meetings with Ambiente’s trades-workers, was seeing how the designers collaborated with the people who would be producing the work – it was eye opening to me. Carpenters, metal-workers, contractors, designers, drafters, etc. we are all designers in some way. While working in my practicum, the biggest realization was how important teamwork is between everyone working on a project and how important it is to listen to everyone on your team and to keep constant communication with everyone. Ideas from all team members were valued equally in a project, and by listening to other members on our design team, the finished product was that much better and more unique than the original design. Simply because ideas were given the opportunity to bounce off other people and grow bigger and better! Experiences like that made me think a lot about how God wants to include us and use us in our relationship with Him. It’s not about living your life in a routine and sticking to what you know is safe, it’s about going out for Christ and being willing to bounce ideas off God and see where He will take you! I think some Christians slide into this comfortable bubble and become too content to do anything extra in their walk with the Lord. You know what I’m saying? For example, In a meeting I had with my boss and our carpenter, we were going over a design I had. Personally, I thought my idea was great and that it couldn’t get any better. I drew the design, made a 3D model to show how I wanted it to work, etc. But when I brought my design to the table in the meeting, my boss and our carpenter right away started making suggestions of how we could change it. I’ll confess that I got a little irritated at first because I thought they were trying to find flaws in my design. As I sat there watching as they looked over my design and hearing what they were saying, I felt a peace in my heart to just listen to what they were saying and try to see my project from their angle. As I listened, my boss had some very good points about possible flaws in the finished product, the carpenter suggest different turning mechanisms to make the design more functionable, etc. They were making it better. Much better. I believe God wants to do the same in our lives. He wants to take us further into Him. Much further. But only if we are willing to sit back and listen. Really listen.
My employer at Ambiente Interiors gave me several projects to work on and allowed me to run with my own ideas. This was good for me. It was encouraging to be given opportunities to show what I can do and prove to myself that I can be successful in the work field. Learning how to collaborate with other designers and tradesmen was hard at first, but it got better. After I would finish a design concept, I would present it to the other designers I worked with, and they would show me where my design was strong, and where it could be even stronger. My ideas were always considered and explored, along with everyone else’s ideas. It built my confidence in my skills and abilities to suggest more ideas and put myself out there. Working with the design team at Ambiente Interiors was a huge blessing because the designers were able to explain things that I did not know, simply because there are things a person can only learn on the job through experience. My employer was a very patient and relaxed boss to work for; she was good at keeping a situation calm and talking through problems with clients and contractors. I saw the importance of listening before acting and how consistent communication is a needed skill in the industry. It was valuable for me to watch how conversations went around the design table and it was empowering to be accepted and welcomed to contribute when sitting around the design table. I appreciate everything that I learned and I hope to one day work for Ambiente Interiors again. I think the most phenomenal thing about my experience at Ambiente Interiors, was how it fell together. My position there was completely the hand of God – no body can take credit. While I was at school, I had been researching a custom home builder that I had heard a lot about. I researched their work and their staff, I followed their projects on social media, I was sold. This was the place I wanted to work. But God had other plans. For over a month, I had tried calling this company many times, but could never get through or further than leaving a message. Not going to lie, I was confused. At the time, this company seemed to be placed on my lap by Jesus, but it took a swift turn to the left and abruptly ended and I did not know what to do. It was nearing the end of my classes and I had still not nailed down a practicum placement. After being shut down by the previous company I was pursuing, I went back to the drawing board. “God I don’t really know what to say, I thought you were lining up that one placement for me perfectly! It was honestly seeming too good to be true! I have no idea where to look or where to start…” When God closes a door, He opens a window. I believe that statement whole-heartedly. 100%. I literally punched, “Interior Design Firm Regina” into Google and Ambiente popped up. From there, God played the cards and I watched in amazement as my practicum came together in a matter of two days.
I want to challenge you guys to live boldly and to allow God to grow your dreams and ideas. You may think you’ve got a sick plan figured out, but I’m living proof that God is 100% able to do so much more than all we could ever plan or imagine. If you are willing to hold on tight and be patient, I know that God wants to do something incredible with your life. Prayer and constant communication with Christ is your ultimate weapon in the battle of the unknown. Go for it guys – my practicum was too amazing – I can’t imagine what He’s going to do this summer!
– Stay Satisfied