Whitney Jones, Founder of Whitney J Decor
Meet Whitney Jones founder of Whitney J Decor an interior designer who hails from New Orleans. Her inspirations come from colorful art, culture and the music of her artistic city. Whitney’s design principles are simple blend the unexpected and be true to your clients inner style.
Location: New Orleans, LA
Year Founded: 2012
Title/Occupation: Interior Designer
Education: Art Institute of Pittsburgh
I started my journey into interior design after realizing that it was where my heart lies. I’m a home fanatic and love beautiful spaces. As a kid I’d been infatuated with space planning and cute decorative accessories. After starting and stopping college a few times (in studies I wasn’t interested in) interior design was a natural next step. After school, I immediately started my company and haven’t looked back since.
Can you give an introduction to Whitney J Decor? What decision led you to start an interior design company?
Whitney J Decor is a design firm catering to women that want a beautiful, yet functional, home. I am all about educating my clients about the importance of investing in key items that’ll last a lifetime and only purchasing items that they love. This way they won’t have buyers remorse from keeping up with the trends. I started my journey into interior design after realizing that it was where my heart lies. I’m a home fanatic and love beautiful spaces. As a kid I’d been infatuated with space planning and cute decorative accessories. After starting and stopping college a few times (in studies I wasn’t interested in) interior design was a natural next step. After school, I immediately started my company and haven’t looked back since.
Would you be willing to share how you started your company (IE: funding, branding, advertising and marketing)? What surprised you about this process? Was there anything that was more difficult or easier than you expected?
I started my business on my own. Funds came from my love. To this day, he’s the one that makes most of the monetary investments and I take care of everything else. I mostly use free marketing through social media and blogging. I also sell my very own handmade pillows (www.etsy.com/shop/whitneyjdecor), and part of the profits go to advertisements via Facebook and Pinterest.
In business there are challenging moments or not so pretty phases that some wish not to highlight. Did you have any of those moments? If so, can you share how you pushed through?
My biggest challenge is being an introvert. I have a hard time reaching out to people to introduce my business. It’s still a challenge for me, but I’m getting a lot better. I craft a few emails to different brands and bloggers, but they sit in my draft folder until I’m able to press send. It’s definitely something that I try to work on each day. I am constantly trying to open up more.
What interior design tips can you offer those updating their space or what’s a good accent piece every space should have?
- Whenever you’re updating a space, make sure you first have a plan. Don’t buy anything for your home until you have this plan in place. When you do start purchasing, ONLY purchase items that you absolutely love.
- Stop following trends if you aren’t in love with the style.
- Invest in quality furniture pieces.
- Don’t be afraid of color. You can bring in color with your art, textiles (upholstered furniture, pillows, throws, etc.), paint, and/or accessories.
I show you just how to get it right the first time with my virtual decorating workshop (www.whitneyjdecor.com/decoratingcourse).
Where does your styling inspirations come from and how do you keep them flowing?
I’m mostly inspired by nature, so in my spaces you’ll always see color, plants, flowers, animal art and sculptures, and lots of texture. One way that I stay inspired is by grabbing my favorite book and reading at the park. Being outside gets my juices flowing and helps me stay creative.
Can you walk through what a typical day consist of?
I usually wake up between 8-9am (sometimes later – I’m a total night owl). Coffee usually comes first. Then, I check my inbox to answer any pressing emails from clients. Next, I’ll head to my sewing machine to make 2-3 pillows, then I’ll head out for my meetings and ship any pillow orders out. Once I’m home, I’ll make another couple of pillows and work on design projects for a few hours. Before I go to bed, I’ll schedule my social media posts for the next day and do some blog writing. I’m in bed at about 1-2 AM each night.
With your experience, what would you say are the three main ingredients to a successful business?
Persistence, perseverance, and personality.
What productivity tools do you use to get work done? (This can be an app, software, book, etc)
My favorites are OneNote (the best software EVER), BufferApp, and the new Google Inbox.
Be sure to check out Whitney J Decor and follow their social media channels.