Welcome to the first in what will be a long and illustrious list of interviews with interesting people in or related to the interior design industry!
I hope you enjoy the interview, it makes a lovely read for a weekend morning! You can find Debbie’s website here.
LH: How is your day going? What has been something interesting or inspiring you’ve seen,done or thought about today?
DB: Well it’s still early but I love that every day is peppered with ideas and inspiration from so many different places. This morning Muriel my (ex!) mother-in law called. She is 85ish and the most incredible lady and source of inspiration. I love the ideas, knowledge and experience that comes from people who have invested time and energy into creating wonderful homes – there is so much wisdom there that I want to capture and share.
LH: Tell us about your background and how you got to where you are now?
DB: Setting up thedecorcafe.com is really a summary of my life to date! I started my career marketing colour at Dulux – I used to love doing all those colour ranges, colour cards and lovely products to help people transform their homes. Then I hopped the fence into branding and packaging design – which was all about helping companies to find the image that suited them best. And after my three kids were born, I spent a while setting up schools in America.
It has all led to where I am now: I have a passionate desire to make it easier and more fun for people to keep control and create a home that suits them and their family.
LH: What is your favourite thing about your job?
DB: I love to see the joy that comes when people discover that it really is possible for them to create a house that they love to live in – and to watch them grow in confidence and delight in the changes that they make.
I 100% believe that the look of your home makes a difference to how you feel and can play a part in helping you to be who you want to be – and so when you see that unfolding in front of you it is a very special thing indeed.
LH: Have you noticed any trends emerging in homes lately?
DB: Well the big trend is to un-trend! We are all talking about being eclectic and mixing old and new and creating personal schemes. And actually that feels great to me.
LH: What do you think is the biggest mistake that homeowners make with decor?
DB: We all have our secret disasters don’t we?! New, enthusiastic home-owners can be over-confident. They whizz out and buy all sorts of stuff they like and make some very expensive mistakes. The sad thing is that this really knocks their confidence and so they start playing it very safe and never really get the gorgeous home they deserve. We just need to learn some key principles and skills and with a bit of practice you can really unleash your creativity…enter decorworkshops from thedecorcafe.com – the fun and friendly way to learn the skills you need!
LH: What is an idea or item you have integrated into a home decor scheme that the client would never have dreamed of choosing, but ended up loving?
DB: With me it tends to be the other way round. I am always thrilled by the fabulous ideas that people have themselves and the pleasure is in giving them the skills and confidence to make it happen.
LH: If you could have one ultimate dream piece for your home, what would it be?
DB: A magic wand to tidy my three teenagers’ bedrooms!