Behind the Design: Kerry Green Design
Behind the Design: Kerry Green, Kerry Green Design – Los Angeles, CA
How did you get where you are today?
Kerry Green: I began my career in New York City with Alan Wanzenberg Design. I worked with Alan for ten plus years and then in-house at Tiffany and Co. designing flagship stores. After my son was born, I moved to Atlanta and worked with Suzanne Kasler. I have recently moved to LA and launched my own design studio.
You’re based in Los Angeles…what’s the design scene like? Who are your favorite vendors, suppliers, and people of the trade?
KG: LA is great! The design community is open and friendly. I love being in a town where there are so many workrooms and craftspeople and fabulous showrooms.
Una Malan is a beautiful showroom in a charming garden courtyard. Una represents some of my favorite brands like Dmitriy and Co. and Hélène Aumont as well as many unique artisan lines like Matthew Fairbank.
Harbinger – I mean everyone loves Joe Lucas. He is talented, friendly, funny, approachable, did I say funny? His showroom has fantastic lines mixed with remarkable vintage finds.
Some of my favorites include Moore and Giles leather, Katie Ridder fabric, Diane Bergson fabric, and Lief Gallery who just moved to a new location. I have loved this shop from afar for so long. It is such a pleasure to shop in person.
What’s your business model?
KG: I create interiors in a very personalized, client-centered way. I like for each project to be the best expression of how my clients live and what they love…a true reflection of who they are. My job to show them things they never knew existed and mix things in an unexpected unique way. As Diana Vreeland said, “Give ‘em what they never knew they wanted.” I travel a ton and like to source items for my clients around the world. I am off to Sydney in a few weeks and London and Paris later in the year.
On the financial side, I charge a design fee to start the project and a purchasing fee on all goods provided. I start the project with a high-low budget that shows clients a range per room of what we will spend. This allows them to make educated choices on where they want to spend money. If they fall in love with a rug that blows master bedroom budget, we can look for bedside tables that are less expensive and still stay on track.
Why did you choose Ivy as your software of choice for your business management needs?
KG: Ivy feels very current, fresh, and well thought out. I like the resources offered and the business community. Albert Hadley and his sense of always looking forward and seeing what the younger generations were doing has always inspired me. I think this applies to design, business, and life.
How has Ivy transformed your design business?
KG: My favorite Ivy story involves the Ivy Magazine and the Christopher Kennedy Compound Show House in Palm Springs. I was at my desk one morning discovering Ivy resources and reading an interview with Christopher Kennedy. I saw he was giving an Ivy sponsored panel talk that day, in 2 hours, down the street here in LA. It was a panel with Joe Lucas and Karyn Millet on the importance of photographing projects. Well, I got up, threw on a pretty dress, and went to hear that panel! After the talk, I introduced myself to Christopher and asked if I could be in his Show House. He very graciously gave me his card and suggested we keep in touch. So, I emailed him a few times to remind him I was very interested in being involved in his Show House. Guess what, a room opened up and he called to ask if I would design the entry!
This tale has moral that Ivy inspires. When you go out there and meet people, listen to panels, and get involved with the design community, great things start to happen.
I am also using Rebecca Orlov of Orlov Design to design my web page. She’s great and yet another recourse I found through Ivy!
Tell us about your involvement with the Palm Springs Show House…
KG: I designed the entry to the 2019 Christopher Kennedy Compound Show House. I am forever grateful to Christopher for taking the risk on a LA newcomer. Designing the space allowed me to get to know so many great LA vendors. The designers in the Show House are really top notch. It is exciting to work around talented designers and establish relationships in a new town.
What’s an Ivy feature you can’t live without?
KG: The product sourcing and ability to allow clients to pay NOW via credit card.
What are the big Markets that you go to? Why do you think it’s so crucial to attend?
KG: I love Maison & Objet in Paris! As I grow my own design studio, I plan to attend more U.S. markets such as High Point Market. I also find attending events like WESTWEEK at the Pacific Design Center is a great way to keep up on what’s new. Sourcing and discovering new lines and designers is an important part of the service I provide my clients.
How does designing make you feel? What’s your business mantra?
KG: The opportunity to create spaces that enrich my clients’ lives is so rewarding. From the flash of delight in a little girl’s eyes when she walks into her new bedroom to the smile of satisfaction on a Dad’s face as he plops down on the perfectly comfortable new family room sofa. These are the rewards of a job well done.
What’s your focus for 2019?
KG: Growing my LA client base. I am currently working on some fantastic East Coast projects but I would love to design more in my new hometown.
Ivy is the leading business management platform and community helping home professionals streamline their businesses by providing the technology, resources, and support they need to thrive. To learn more about Ivy, schedule a demo with an Ivy Guru who can show you how designers use Ivy to streamline their workflow and make more time for what they love, design.