A letter from Sophie.

Dear Jessamy,

Would you mind if I asked you about the path you went down to become a designer? Did you get a degree in interior design? Did you do an apprenticeship? I’m at a crossroads. I’ve been in a corporate career for the last ten years and I’m looking for a change. Interior decorating is something I truly enjoy and have a desire to learn more about, but it’s difficult to know where to start. I’m currently taking an interior design class at a local design college and am thoroughly enjoying it, but I want more. I’m supposed to be working right now but all I can think about is ordering throw pillows and slipcovers…

Thank you,

Dear Sophie,

I completely enjoyed your letter and thank you for writing. In some, “what are the chances” sort of way, I think you asked the right person. Because- the basic gist of my story is, I just went for it!

Here’s the scoop…

I do have a lengthy design history. I have loved design, art, color, visuals, since birth really :) They are a very important part of my life that I couldn’t live without.

I fell into an art degree, and went on to work as a graphic designer in advertising and merchandising. You name it I designed it- billboards, t-shirts, marketing materials, semi-graphics, wedding invitations, logos, etc… I enjoyed the work but it never felt effortless. Throughout the jobs I held, people commented on my color sense. That was one element of the work I enjoyed most.

At about the ten year mark (sound familiar?), I started daydreaming about other possible creative outlets… I had this paint color consulting business idea that I contemplated for a few years (not a lot of competition in the area), wasn’t sure if the concept would take? But the idea really excited me! And it seemed attainable.

So one day I was feeling lack-luster and thought, what am I waiting for? And that was it…

Time to get focused- I selected a paint brand, met with a really nice rep. (Benjamin Moore), learned the products, choose a business name, designed a website and card, and worked really hard (sometimes for free)… waited…waited… First call, second call, third call… I’m in business, yahoo!

I admit, I sweat out the first appointments (lol) and thought… what the heck am I doing? But- to my surprise, this work felt effortless! I loved/love every aspect of Color Zen especially the fact that simple changes like new paint colors, can completely change a client’s perspective on their home for the better. And that feels powerful.

I am really lucky, I took a chance and it paid off. The business is expanding and I’ve had a lot of “right place at the right time” experiences. I can say I’ve always been hell bent on loving my job so much, it doesn’t feel like work- and I believe that has happened, and for this I am deeply grateful.

And Sophie- I hope you go for it too, and the career shift brings you much happiness!


(thank you Real Simple for the photo)


One thought on “A letter from Sophie.

  1. Thanks to design professionals like you, we learn so much and gain the courage to step out and take risks – in color and in career. Thanks for sharing your story. I'm inspired.Sarah

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