We had the good fortune of connecting with Amanda Gorski and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Amanda, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I have always been drawn to the creative arts. As a child I always wanted to be an artist. I chose creative electives at an early age, preferring art class to additional physical education classes or technology classes that the majority of my class would take. I feel deep within me an urge or need to create. When I am doing something creative, whether it be interior design, painting, drawing, photography, I am at my happiest. It gives me this little bubble that I can get into and block out the noise of everyday life. Which currently involves an infant, a toddler, a puppy and a husband! Not that I need to block these individuals out, but I spend my day thinking of them and taking care of them. Sometimes I feel like I give my all to other people. I spend my day doing things for others, taking care of others, performing for others. What I love most about interior design is creating a space where others can feel their happiest. I am a firm believer in the theory that your environment is sacred and will directly affect your mental and psychological state of mind. If you are able to come home to a beautifully and well thought out abode after a stressful day then I believe you will feel a sense of relief. I find this to be true for myself, thus it brings me great joy to be able to do this for my clients. I would love to be able to simply redesign my own home over and over again. As a designer, I find it terribly difficult to work on my own home as my tastes are always evolving and expanding. I hate to be confined to one aesthetic for an indefinite amount of time. Being able to take on new projects provides me with an outlet to keep imagining and then executing all the ideas I would love to do for myself but realistically could not do!
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
My first internship was in New York City for the home decor designer, Kim Seybert. I spent two summers interning for her before I switched gears to test the waters of fashion pr, which I quickly discovered was not for me. I realized I wanted to do something where I could be creative, interact with others outside of an office, and not be tied to the same routine everyday. I took my experience working in the home decor field and applied it to interior design. I spent time working for a small boutique design firm in NYC and then went off on my own. It was terrifying to do this as it’s a slow grow business and very much word of mouth. Especially 8 years ago when social media was just beginning to be used to help promote business platforms. When you are a creative and you work for yourself, everyday is a risk. Every job is necessary and could make or break you. Often times you will take projects on simply because you need the paycheck, but the project will turn out to be something you wouldn’t necessarily promote for one reason or another. I found this to be the most challenging aspect of interior design because every job leads you to the next. You will spend so much time working on a project and if a client puts their foot down or hinders your creative vision it will feel like a waste because you simply can not put your name on something that you don’t feel represents your creative aesthetic and essentially ends up being a waste of time. I feel that it took me years to finally be able to determine which projects would be beneficial for me both creatively and financially. I give a lot to my clients and I only want the best outcome for them. It crushes my soul a little bit if I feel like a client is not happy with what I present to them and I will always go above and beyond for them because I want both them and myself to be equally as happy and proud of the final result.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I have friends visit from out of town often enough that I feel like we have a good routine for this. I love checking out vintage or antique stores. I like to check out the shops in the heights, or other places such as Upper Kirby Consignment or Courtney Barton. We will often take our visitors to check out the Menil Collection, Rothko Chapel and the CY Twombly Gallery or the MFAH. Then we would go for a fun lunch somewhere. I always make sure to bring my guests to Tiny Boxwoods. You simply can not visit Houston and not go to Tinys and get a cookie or have a delicious white wine mojito. Another great lunch spot I love is Verdine, a local vegan restaurant in the Heights that I just happened to have been the designer for. Dinners are where I like to really showcase Houston as we have such an evolving culinary scene here. Some of my current favorites are Rosie Cannonball, their focaccia di recco should be illegal, State of Grace for some of the best oysters, Nancy’s Hustle, I love how different their menu is and the atmosphere reminds me of some of my favorite places to eat back in NYC, Tonys or DaMarcos for the most delectable Italian food ever, Theodore Rex for a culinary experience, El Tiempo for the best Mexican food in town and don’t forget the frozen sangria margaritas, Nobies for a great cozy/boozy night of delicious comforting dishes, and lastly either Uchi or MF Sushi, both of which I could eat at every single day and never get bored! The list goes on and on!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I never considered interior design as a profession. Not until one day when my significant other, now husband, suggested it would be something I may like as he had noticed how much effort I put into designing my room in my new apartment that I was sharing in NYC with two other roommates. It suddenly made perfect sense that this would be an ideal career for me. I am a cancer and we naturally and instinctively are homebodies. We are creative and appreciate all things artistic and beautiful. Our homes are our safe havens, our refuge. It was a lightbulb moment that sparked a movement within me.