When it comes to design, former furniture specialist Kathy Coady understands how to make a room aesthetically pleasing to the eye, and comfortable on the body.
Thanks for joining us, Kathy! Tell us a little bit about how you got into the design business.
I always had a fondness for beautiful things. When I was in my thirties as an at home mother with one daughter I decided it was time for me to attend school to study my passion Interior Design. When I received my degree I worked for large retail furniture showrooms. I did this for 15 years. Then in 2011, I decided I didn’t want to sell furniture any longer I wanted to provide design solutions to clients therefore began my own design business, New Angle Designs.
What are some of the first things you try to notice when meeting a new client at their space? Do you have a checklist, or is it a meet and greet to feel out their personality?
The first thing I like to do when I meet a new client is to put them at ease by letting them know that I am working for them to assist them in providing good solid design solutions for their home based on their lifestyle and needs. So we sit and talk about their vision and their priority’s. From our conversation I then make a list of what we talked about and review it with the client.
Working as a designer is committing to a career filled with difficult challenges. Which problems do you face most often? Clients or space? Do you have a method to work through those problems?
The biggest challenge I have is with clients believing my time is valuable. I charge an hourly fee for my services and over time have established creditability in the design industry and have valuable knowledge that can be used in their home. To overcome this mindset I use a lot of design rational when talking with my clients about design in their home.
Design shows are very popular on television right now. How have they influenced your business? In what ways do your clients now interact with you that they might not have before the popularity of the shows?
I think the design shows are helpful as they allow the clients to see there are many options in design available to them. I like it when my client is knowledgeable about the many products available. I can then advise them on how best to use these products to create a successful design for their home.
From the outside it seems like New England focuses on incorporating it’s rich history into many designs! Is that something many clients want? Describe if/how you might incorporate a sense of history into your designs.
I live and work in a seasonal/resort area outside of Boston called Cape Cod. This area provides me with inspiration from the sea and all the wonderful natural elements offered by the beach’s and ponds and the shoreline. So when I’m working with my clients I encourage them to bring the outdoors into their home design and to embrace the natural beauty of this area that has brought them to live on Cape Cod.
Do you have a design project you are most proud to have completed? What did it look like before? After?
One project I am most proud of is when I turned a room that was once a garage, which had been finished into a simple room with a sectional sofa, a TV, a few tables. This room was referred to as the “Dogs Room”. While the couple was at work all day the dogs stayed in this room. When the family came home from work in the evening they would sit with the dogs in this room to watch TV. It had no closets for storage, it had no proper lighting and they were using only half of the room. So I was able to redesign the room so they had a proper entrance, with wall sconces providing proper lighting. I designed a custom cabinet as a closet space for their coats and boots and storage for their dog toys. On the opposite side of the custom closet I designed an entertainment cabinet providing them with a proper home for their TV, additional storage and display shelving. Per their request I used the original sectional that they loved hanging out on with their dogs in their newly designed family room, no longer “the Dogs Room”.
We love rugs. Can you take us through how you use area rugs in your designs? Are there designs where you’re more likely to use a rug? Less?
Rugs a are very important item to include in all room designs. Foremost rugs help to define the space while also provides an anchor for the furniture in the space. A rug in my designs can most times be that one item that can add texture or pattern to a room. Rugs also provide protection for your floors. I try to use rugs when and wherever possible.
Which area rugs do you find most durable? Least durable?
I try to use all wool rugs if possible. They offer the ease of cleaning and are the most durable especially for high traffic areas.
We know as well as anyone that rugs can be expensive. Any assistance on how to cut down on the initial price?
Many times I will suggest to my clients an option to purchase a broadloom and have it cut and bound to the exact size they need. Often this can be the most cost effective way to have a durable rug at an affordable price.
Thanks for your time today!