Kentucky, Sewing and a Whirlwind of Design
Several years ago, Nancy Waddell was sitting at her home in Kentucky with her small children, a strong sewing background and a desire to do something she loved. As a child, Nancy used to flip through building catalogs for fun and so the extra space in her home quickly became a workroom.
Not long after, Nancy began forging connections and relationships with a few designers around town who just had their hands in everything. She remembers receiving calls at random hours of the day, a designer friend on the other end saying excitedly, “What are you doing right now? I’m in your driveway and working on a project. Let’s go look at it now! I need your help!”
Nancy was quickly pulled into this fun, fast-paced world and began to build her experience and repertoire as she worked with designers and friends who showed nice houses and were often involved in high end design jobs throughout the area. Building relationships with these designers enhanced their business and helped Nancy to build her own business and experience as well.
Buckingham Drive Interior Design Arrives on the Scene
Entering into the world of interior design the “back way” sometimes works out for the best. Nancy cut her teeth in the world of sewing, building hands-on workroom skills, gaining knowledge of draperies and building a solid foundation of design elements. Upon moving to a new state, Nancy no longer had the extra space for her workroom, but she was not deterred in the least.
Nancy transitioned into the furniture field, expanding her expertise even further. This eventually led to a role at Ethan Allen, where her background in fabrics and drapery combined with her newfound furniture knowledge gave Nancy a leg up. Nancy stayed on with Ethan Allen for several years, moving from state to state and into a managerial role for a time as well.
Nancy’s love of her craft and a strong desire to work with clients one-on-one, building relationships and meeting their needs eventually led her to open her own business and Buckingham Drive Interior Designs was born. Nancy discovered quickly that working for herself, without the pressure of a corporation and with the ability to work directly on all parts of the process creates a huge difference in client experience.
“Customer service is everything. This is their dream and they deserve a good experience from beginning to end.”
That personal connection and attention to detail allow Nancy to deliver the very highest level of client satisfaction. Customer service is everything to Nancy. She goes above and beyond to ensure that the experience each client has with her is smooth from beginning to end and that everyone ultimately walks away with the dream!
Interior Design Found Nancy
For Nancy, it was never ‘I’d just love to be a designer, I’d love to decorate houses, that’s really what I want to do, it’s always been my dream.’ Yes, she was armed with strong sewing skills. Yes, she created a workroom in her own home to expand her repertoire. Yes, she’s always had a knack for putting color together really well.
But as Nancy describes it, this profession and this work found her and she simply can’t stay away from it. It’s in her soul. It comes so naturally to her, that even when she’s decided to focus on other things, people still constantly reach out and find her, asking for advice and direction to create their dream home.
When looking for a designer, Nancy says, “It’s good to find someone who is crazy about the industry and passionate, but it’s almost better to find someone who has a natural affinity for it – who is thinking about it all the time.”
And Nancy embodies this in so many ways. Once she began to design, she simply couldn’t stop. She was on all the time and hasn’t slowed a bit since then. When at a restaurant, Nancy observes her surroundings with a much more keen eye than most. She looks at the silverware and the linens and the window treatments and every single element of the design, thinking about how things do (and sometimes don’t) fit together and work in every space and questioning the why behind the design.
When talking to clients and sometimes in her every day conversations, Nancy has an innate ability to pick up on someone’s specific ‘design style’ and get a sense of not only what they might like, but what elements and features would work the best and allow them to feel comfortable in their own space.
The Stuff of Dreams
The part that Nancy gets the most thrilled about is the moment when all of the design samples arrive and she gets to sit down and piece everything together to start solving the puzzle. As an authorized Hunter Douglas dealer, the window treatments Nancy creates in a space are truly stunning – but they are a part of a much bigger picture. With a dining room table frequently piled high with wallpaper rolls, paint swatches and tile samples, Nancy literally cannot stop thinking about putting all of the options together in the best possible way for her clients.
Nancy is the queen of staying in the moment when it comes to sharing her gift and doing what she loves. More often than not, she’ll stop somewhere in the middle of the process – usually right at the point where everything is really starting to come together – look her client in the eye and say “Isn’t this fun? This is SO much fun!”
Interior design and decor is different than renovating your home or fixing the plumbing. To Nancy, it is a dream that she gets to help fulfill. She loves every single opportunity to help clients realize the dream that they’ve envisioned. These “life moments” are usually the culmination of a lot of thought and work and care – Nancy cherishes every opportunity to provide her clients with that dream.
Having a Plan is the Only Plan
Most designers have an ideal type of client – people with the drive, desire, motivation and the budget to get to work on the design, plus an open mind about the process and a relatively unclear vision of the specifics.
Nancy loves to step in here, help clients find their style, offer ideas and suggestions and really get the ball rolling towards achieving that dream interior. This may be the ideal client, but Nancy enjoys the opportunity to work with all different types of clients in various stages of the interior design process. She truly gets to know you and your story to create a space that fits your style and your needs.
Right now, Nancy is working on an attic – shiplap, staining, flooring, drywall – the whole nine yards. Throughout the process, the clients have added more and more wants to the list, leading to a more strained budget. Often times, this can lead to a panicked response from clients, leading them to suddenly start scouting for cheaper elements, change the design plan and compromise on their dream.
Nancy’s experience has taught her that the better way to handle this is to put the brakes on a separate part of the plan to ensure that you stay within budget on the current parts and that ultimately, your home becomes everything you want and need it to be. Clients and homeowners will always regret not doing the best thing the first time around.
Fortunately, Nancy is there to guide her clients through this process, encouraging adjustments where appropriate but never allowing clients to compromise so much that they end up with anything less than their dream interior.
After all, your dream is worth the investment, time and work. You are creating more than just a room in a building. You’re creating a home or an experience, and that is truly the dream!