New Year, New Opportunities
At the beginning of a new year, we typically look at ways in which we can move forward doing better. The interior design industry impacts the lives of so many with the work that designers do every day. This impact is far and wide. The growth and development of the design industry has come a long way. An area of growth that continues to be slow and undermined is the industry’s lack of diversity. Diversity matters. It’s a BIG deal, contrary to popular belief. Diversity of the team and the design bring a variety of different perspectives and ideas during the design process that can lead to innovation and an inclusive design experience for everyone. Not only do we advocate for diversity of the people, but diversity in thought and skill. This month, we hope to bring some awareness to the diversity issue and shine a light on diverse interior designers that have made an impact in the industry and in surrounding communities.
Diversity of the Team and the Design
We often see global culture and diversity rooted in design, but behind the sleek exterior, are there diverse faces that are designing these spaces? The answer is simple: not enough. The design industry is ironically a sea of people that look the same and often come from similar walks of life. To create diverse design, it starts with a motivated team of diverse individuals. Not only does this affect the future of the industry, but it affects the clients that we design for. It creates an environment in which inclusive design becomes reality and not just theory. The change is challenging — yet rewarding. Creating a platform for ethnic minorities can encourage future voices who want to be heard and claim their rightful places in the industry. Ultimately, it is about coming together as designers to create spaces for ALL!
Diverse Faces in the Industry
We’ve highlighted a few faces and companies that stand out in their work toward a more diverse industry. Hana Getachew is a New York based designer and is the founder of the bold brand Bolé Road Textiles that combines her passion for Ethiopian handwoven fabrics with her career and passion for interior design. She is devoted to creating a more ethical and sustainable world through her beautiful fabrics. Nicole Gibbons of Clare is our next featured woman designer. She owns a firm in Harlem, New York and is the owner of her wall paint company, Clare. She cleverly recognized a void in the design industry and pressed toward being an advocate, creating empowering communities, and seeing people from diverse backgrounds in positions of influence were a few of the ways to make change happen.
Justina Blakeney is an American designer best known for her bohemian aesthetic that is reflected in her brand Jungalow. She noted the same lack of ethnic diversity amongst designers in the industry. She believes that designers and creatives like diversity. Stories are more representative and real, and elements like texture and color are added to create more compelling spaces. Who couldn’t agree more? Creating story and tradition through space is important to creating inclusion within that space. Lastly, we commend Byron & Dexter Peart on their contributions to the design industry through their brand GOODEE. History and tradition shapes how they see the world and compels them to pay homage to who and what came before them.
Check out our Look of the Month! We’ve featured items from each designer’s company. Add the shopping list to your cart here.
Also, check out our Instagram page for tips on how to put diversity into action. Happy New Year!