Female Feature Friday: Katie Deem
It is no secret that I am passionate about women's empowerment and women in leadership positions. As women's history month ended in March, a new series emerged here at The Honest Mama blog. Each week throughout April and May, Female Feature Fridays will spotlight local female entrepreneurs in Champaign-Urbana and surrounding communities.
Meet Katie Deem, an interior designer who can help you create the home of your dreams.
Name: Katie Deem
Business Name: Country Home Charm
Tell us about yourself!
I grew up in the CU area and went to Illinois State University and became a middle school teacher. I taught for 5 years then I became a stay at home mom. My husband and I have three boys and we live in our dream home in the county in the CU area.
When did you decide to start your design business?
I often get asked my input and insights on anything decor related from my friends and I thoroughly enjoy helping them out! A couple years ago, my girlfriend told me she thought I should start an Instagram account and share my house since she knew I loved to decorate it so much. She encouraged me to turn my love for decorating into a business! To be completely honest, I was hesitant, but I decided to just go for it and have enjoyed every single client I’ve been able to help in these last couple years! I love being able to be creative and this was a perfect outlet to do so!
Why do you think having a thoughtfully designed home is so important?
I often tell my clients that you need to love the home you live in! I think that a home is a safe space and should provide you comfort. It is important to be able to relax in your home with things around you that you enjoy.
You seem like such a natural in your industry. At what point did you realize that you had an eye for home design?
I have always enjoyed decorating my spaces. I remember always rearranging my childhood bedroom and cleaning and organizing it. That carried on to my dorm room, to my apartment in college and then to the homes I have lived with my husband. When I was younger, I found it very enjoyable to create a room that could reflect me and each stage of life I was in. I truly found happiness in decorating and knew that that was something I loved to do.
Can you describe what the design process is like for you, both personally in your own home and when you’re working with a client?
I like to start with having the client tell me what purpose the room or the space is going to have and what pieces of furniture or decor will be staying. Sometimes clients have a hard time trying to describe what they actually want exactly, so by doing this first I can see in my mind the foundation for the project. Then I go in with questions helping me figure out the style and aesthetic. I take notes of needs, wants and decor options.
As for my home, I sometimes need a fresh slate and take everything off of a surface or out of a space and then I can start over. I love to “shop your home” and find pieces around the house or in a space that might work even better in a new space. Just by changing up decor around your own home can refresh a space for no cost!
When you are working with a client on designing a space, what is your favorite part of the process?
Without a doubt the finished product! It is just so satisfying to see how all the pieces can come together. I love how the client can be so excited to see the room changed to something they love. And who doesn’t love some ‘Before and After’ pictures!?
What motivates you to continue doing what you do?
I just absolutely love being able to help people love a space in their home. It’s as simple as that!
As a former teacher, do you will return to teaching at any point in your future, or do you foresee home design being your permanent calling?
I honestly do not know right now. I love teaching so much. I really like being able to help others decorate their homes too. I do know one thing, being a mom is pretty awesome and I’m just loving that job!
You are a superhero mom with three young boys! How do you balance life as a mom with your design business?
They sure do keep me busy that’s for sure. I try to focus on client jobs and online shopping when they are at school or sleeping. It’s definitely a balancing act but it works and it’s fun!
You can find Katie on Instagram @country.home.charm