Oh, I Design

Behind the Design: Ivy Designer Jessica Klein of Oh, I Design

Ivy Designer Spotlight: Jessica Klein of Oh, I Design – Boston, MA

How did you get where you are today?

I’m originally from Oklahoma, grew up in Oklahoma City, and went to college at Oklahoma State University (Go Pokes!) where I gained my Bachelor of Science in Interior Design. Shortly after, my now husband (then boyfriend) and I moved to San Diego, CA where he landed a fantastic job opportunity and where my career really began. The risky move to California was my biggest motivator to begin my blog and take on side design projects while working in the design industry full-time. Not only was I eager to learn, but I was anxious to make like-minded friends since leaving Oklahoma. During my time in San Diego, I was fortunate enough to grow my blog and online presence (this was before Instagram was a main platform designers/creatives were using), start a creative connection San Diego chapter where I met some amazing women with similar goals, and gain invaluable experience in the design field. San Diego will always hold a special place in my heart, not to get too sappy.Fast forward 4 years, we are now located in Boston, MA. Yes, the complete opposite to San Diego. My husband received another incredible opportunity with the same company that we couldn’t pass up. So we packed our bags and headed East! I’m thrilled to say since we’ve moved here, I have established my design business and lifestyle blog (Oh, I Design Blog) and have worked with a handful of fantastic clients that have brought even more business. We also added a member to our family; her name is Evie and she will be 2 in September! It seems we will be here for the longterm and I couldn’t be more happy about it!

Oh I Design is a creative studio focusing on residential design, boutique commercial design, styling, e-design and organization. How do you make sure a client feels secure, happy, and like “themselves” in their newly designed space?
I think the most important part of making sure a client feels secure and happy in their new space is bringing in art, accessories, and/or other design elements that are meaningful to them. One of my favorite parts of my job is finding new life to some of my clients’ treasures. When they say “Wow, I never would’ve thought of that”, I know I’ve done my job.
Who are you favorite local Boston vendors and people of the trade?
Market Stalls at the Boston Design Center and Niche Boston for plants. Ridge Painting & Restoration is my go-to painter and Benjamin Moore is my go-to for paint. I also like Longleaf Lumber and Farrow & Ball…the list goes on!
What’s the design scene like in Boston? Can you name some of your favorite local shops?
I’ve only been in Boston for almost 4 years, but I’ve found the design scene to be extremely supportive! The city is big enough for there to be constant inspiration and events, but small enough so that there are enough projects to go around. My favorite local shops are Hudson in the South End, Lekker Home, Mohr & McPherson, Reside, and like I mentioned above, Niche Boston and Market Stalls.
You run the Oh, I Design Blog as well which has become a leading destination for all things design and lifestyle in New England. How does the growth of your blog impact the growth of your interior design business?
The blog came before the design business and it’s a very important part of my company. Oh, I Design Blog constantly brings in new clients – design clients and blog partnerships – so I see a lot of value in continuing to create content. It’s been a huge passion of mine for almost 7 years now!
How does designing make you feel? 
Designing is my happy place. It makes me feel at ease and it’s incredibly fulfilling.
What’s your business mantra?
I thank William Morris for putting this into a beautiful quote, “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.” As well as, work hard and be nice to people.
You’ve been featured in domino, PopSugar, Better Homes & Gardens and HouseBeautiful to name a few. What’s your secret to getting published?
I think the key to getting published is the photography. I’m currently working with a PR company in Boston and she has helped me understand what different publications look for when they receive pitches. It’s been extremely helpful as I am now able to be a little strategic when styling & photographing the space.
How much time do you allocate to social media, email/newsletter marketing and content marketing?
On average, I probably spend 1-2 hours a day on Instagram, Twitter & Facebook. Pinterest depends on the project phase, but typically, I spend 3-5 hours per week on Pinterest. I try to blog 1-2 times a week. My newsletter is a work in progress.
Why did you join Ivy?
Once I realized I was using several different programs to accomplish all that Ivy offers, I knew it was time to make a change. Once I learned about Ivy, took part in one of the webinars, and had a fantastic chat with Reisa on the phone, I knew my design business would greatly benefit from Ivy!
What have you learned from the Ivy Designer Network (the private FB Group)?
I would join Ivy just for the online community! Seriously. Not only has the Ivy Designer Network Facebook Group been helpful to learn about different trade sources for products we see at Restoration Hardware, Pottery Barn, etc., but it’s also a great place to learn about how other interior designers run their businesses. There is a lot of invaluable knowledge that is kindly shared in the Ivy Family!
How does Ivy help streamline your day-to-day workflow as an interior designer?
Being able to propose items, easily have clients approve per proposal item, and then convert into an invoice for payment in a matter of seconds is saving me time and saving my clients’ time. I used to have a Google sheet for each client, but then, I would have to create a separate invoice and it got to be confusing and messy. I also love that I can track the payment and shipping status of each item. Every designer knows the amount of working parts that happen to make a room come together, and Ivy has been an incredible asset to my business.
What’s an Ivy feature you can’t live without?
Proposals, invoices and the Ivy Product Clipper!

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