We had the good fortune of connecting with Monica and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Monica, what should our readers know about your business?
I run an online interior design studio called Reflected Interior Design. What is online interior design you ask? This is a way in which you can visualize your room professionally decorated with a cohesive style. I create a detailed 3D photorealistic interior design for your room according to your personal style and room measurements. You get 3D images, 360 degree tour, shopping list, setup instructions, and direct styling guidance from me. You get to see your room fully designed upfront, and the shopping list with direct links is an easy way you can purchase pieces to achieve the designed look. It’s an instant gratification moment when you can see the final result of your decorated room.
Many of my clients are individuals or families that had just moved into a new space. During this busy and stressful time, I make the design process fun, easy, and streamlined through online design which sets me apart from traditional in-person design services. I love turning empty rooms into cozy, tranquil, and functional spaces. I love working with contemporary styles such as mid-century modern, industrial, coastal, bohemian, transitional (mixing traditional with contemporary).
For so many of us, the pandemic changed our perspectives in how we use our space. The online arena of the design industry has boomed during the pandemic during a time when people are in their homes more, wanting to improve their surroundings, and seeking more online services. I started this business during the pandemic feeling the same way! As I was organizing my house, I wanted to find a way to make my space not just good, but great! I wanted a beautifully decorated home to make my space complete. It was then I started formal training in interior design through a combination of Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and eDesign courses. This inspired me launch my business, Reflected Interior Design. Since then, I have worked with many clients including new homeowners and those that needed to refresh their spaces.
What are you most proud of? I’m proud of finding my way in this online arena, in creating and running this business. I come from an entrepreneurial family, but hadn’t got that route initially. It gives me some insight of my family’s roots, and how my parents had to build their businesses from the ground up as refugees new in this country. I had the privilege of having stable work before I launched this business, but my family had to build from seemingly nothing. I’m proud of my family and can appreciate even more the work and patience it takes.
How has your work-life balance changed over time?
My work life balance has definitely shifted after having kids. I gained a new job and had more to do! There are only so many hours in a day, so I often remind myself to prioritize the things that I want to get done the most. I am so grateful that I can work remotely. I enjoy the technical part of design work, and working on computers, so online design really suits me. I am also grateful that I can also outsource certain household tasks, which helps maintain my work-life balance/integration (and sanity).
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I love museums of all kinds. I am a curious person by nature, so the Museum District fulfills my desire to learn and imagine. The Museum of Fine Arts Houston gives me sparks of inspiration for my designs. It is wonderful to see the many different types of art this museum encompasses. The Houston Museum of Natural Science brings out the curiosity in me. Who isn’t amazed when seeing gigantic dinosaur skeletons?
Dining: We would eat at Uchi (and book for a weekend reservation way ahead of time!). I love the different surprising flavors they use in their dishes. I once had a cilantro ice cream for dessert–cilantro! Who would have thought to use this in a dessert? And it was tasty.
As a mother of young children, we are always at playgrounds, splash pads, and active outside. Favorites are Weir Park, Levy Park, and Discovery Green.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to thank Jenna Gaidusek and the eDesign Tribe community that she leads. This is a supportive group for those doing online interior design. Thanks to my husband and my best friend for being ongoing cheerleaders in my work!
Personal photo: Priscilla Baierlein Photography