Over the years, I have come across interior designers, business owners, architects, and other remarkable individuals, as clients and in daily life, whose work and lives completely inspire me. After getting to know these women and men, I have found that one of the keys to their success is organization.
As a result, I decided to develop a question and answer series, The Organized Lifestyle, which showcases their work and dives deep into the daily organizational systems, products, and habits they use and incorporate into their lives. I hope we can all learn a thing or two from them!
For our final 2016 Q&A post we interviewed Marika Meyer from Marika Meyer Interiors and Textiles. Based in Bethesda, MD, Marika is a talented interior and textile designer who consistently inspires us with her stunning client projects and behind-the-scenes glimpses of her daily life that she shares on Instagram (@marikameyer1).
Tell us about your business.
We are a full service interior design firm specializing in residential design.
What inspired you to get into the industry?
My interest and background is in fine arts so interior design was an easy transition. Interior design allows you to be both creative and exercise your type A personality type- which we have many at our office!
What has been the biggest surprise or challenge with your role?
The biggest surprise as an interior designer was the process side of the industry. Designing a space or a home is a process but implementing that design can be its own challenge! You must be organized and have a strong attention to detail to pull off a successful installation.
How would you describe your aesthetic? What style/brands do you gravitate towards?
We prefer a curated home with a mix of styles to keep the design fresh and interesting. We find the best way to achieve this is to mix vintage pieces into the design to balance out the new.
Does organization have a focus in your career?
Organization is very important in our field! The majority of our clients have families and we design for the lifestyle of our clients. During our "intake" period we like to really break down what our client needs are in each space and that typically includes storage. Storage is one of the top requests from our clients!
What are your go to products or tools that you couldn't live without?
We would be lost without custom MMI notepads! They have a grid on the pages so it is easy for us to sketch or take down notes.
Do you rely mostly on electronic organization systems or prefer the paper and pen type? Would you recommend a combination? How do you best manage both?
We recommend a combination of both electronic and paper and pen systems. The cloud has allowed us to work more efficiently and remotely when required. We always back up our electronic system with a physical project binder with all of the project's content. A little old school but it has been effective!
Are there any organizing tips you've tried over the years that did not work for you? What were they Why do you think they did not work?
We have tried countless organizational methods! One that comes to mind is toy storage. The feedback from clients is that the deeper the bin used for toys the less their kids will use their toys!
Are there any habits you have formed and use everyday to get and stay organized?
Lists, lists, and more lists! I always have my pen and paper nearby to jot down a passing thought or idea. I have even gone as far to keep a pen and paper on my bedside table for those middle of the night wake ups.
What is your favorite organizational tool that you use, whether it be a product, app, or routine?
Google is my #1 organizational tool for e-mail, scheduling, and project management.
Why do you think its important to stay organized in your role?
In our industry it is in all of the details- whether it is in the design or the execution. In order to achieve a design that both works aesthetically and functionally you need to be able to stay organized.
What is one piece of advice you would give others to stay organized?
Have a plan or process and stick with it! It can be trial and error but once you have found what works for you keep at it!