We made a BIG announcement this week. Our speaker panel for the Spring 2023 Haven Workshop has officially been released and enrollment is open! Our lineup of influential women in the design industry is better than ever and we’re celebrating with a full week of interviews and home tours with our panel experts. Want more? Join us May 17–19th for your opportunity to learn from creatives you admire, in-person, face-to-face, real success, and failure stories shared. We’re pulling back the curtain on how we took our businesses and brands to the next level—and how you can, too. Click here to learn more and enroll.
Meet Laura Hodges
We cannot wait for you to meet Laura of Laura Hodges Studio! In our exchange below, she easily dispenses savvy business tips that you can start implementing right now. If her interview and insight have piqued your interest, just wait until you hear what she shares at the Haven Workshop. Keep scrolling to read her interview and enjoy a sneak peek of her waterfront Oxford Project being featured on the blog this week!
We’re so excited to hear what you’ll be sharing about Sourcing Product & Vendor Relations at the Workshop! Sourcing is a huge time commitment but has massive payoffs, do you have any tips on how to streamline or ease the process?
Sourcing product is such an important part of our design planning and finding the right pieces at the right price, from reputable vendors, while also making a profit is definitely a challenge! One of my best tips is to learn all you can about the various vendors and makers… and there are a lot! Visiting High Point Market, taking factory tours, visiting the D&D and 200 Lex in New York City, and getting to know your local furniture makers and retailers is the first step towards learning all you can about furniture design, manufacturing, profit margins, and procurement. Always be open to learning about more the manufacturing process and nurture your vendor relationships for the best customer service.
What is one skill you think everyone in the design industry should learn?
Sales! We all need to be creative and organized but you must be able to explain and sell your designs to your clients for a successful business.
Have you taken a huge leap of faith in your career and did it pay off?
Yes, in 2018 my husband and I decided to work together so he joined our firm as COO, handling the operations and finances so that I could stay focused on the design planning and client interface. Luckily it has worked out very well but it was definitely a leap of faith for both our work and family life!
Who gave you a piece of advice that changed your career trajectory, and what was it?
My PR agent guided me to only show projects on our website that represented the type of work we’d want to repeat, even if it’s only a few projects. I thought we should show everything we’d ever completed but focusing on the type of client and the type of project we really wanted was some of the best advice I’ve received.
How do you measure your success?
I measure success by the satisfaction I have with my everyday life. If I can feel proud of the projects we’re completing and know that our clients are happy and trust us, then I know we’re doing good work. Recognition by the design industry is amazing, of course, but I find true success on a more personal level.
The Haven Workshop is an intimate, community-driven learning experience for interior designers who are looking to up-level their business and build a successful brand.