My quest to find inspirational, creative souls continues... join me as I chat to another wonderful, quirky lady who has managed to turn a design dream into reality.
CREATIVE LITTLE SOUL INTERVIEW
Creative Soul: Stephanie Nichols
Shop: Steal The Limelight
Lives: Sydney, Australia
This week I was delighted to interview the very lovely Stephanie Nichols - an accountant turned lamp shade designer who is the creative force behind local Australian company, Steal The Limelight. Finding stunning lamp shades is one of my pet obsessions, so I was thrilled to discover that Stephanie not only stocks a whole range of beauties online, but she will custom-make shades to order (hip, hip, hooray!). Make sure you pop on over to her site for a peek!
WHAT IS YOUR DESIGN BACKGROUND?
I have no formal training in design but probably should have followed that path rather than accounting which is the path I took. I have always had an interest in home décor and interior design and have renovated numerous houses. Other than the complete rebuild of our house in Balgowlah Heights, my most recent home decorating adventure was in Beechworth, Victoria. I bought an old turn of the century cottage and moved another cottage from Melbourne onto the site. With the help of my brother who is a builder we completely redecorated the houses. I absolutely loved that project!
WHAT WAS YOUR INSPIRATION FOR STARTING YOUR COMPANY AND HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN IN BUSINESS?
Steal The Limelight was born out of sheer necessity. When I was decorating our home in Balgowlah Heights, I wanted some fabric lampshades to hang over my island bench but I didn’t just want plain ones. I looked everywhere but all the fabric pendant shades on the market were either made of poor quality fabric or they were very expensive. I researched the materials required for making my own shades for months and found good quality lampshade lining in Europe, Australian made wires and the Warwick Fabrics showroom where I made my first lampshade fabric purchases.
I have been in business for almost a year now! I love pouring over magazines and fabric houses searching for beautiful fabrics to create gorgeous brightly coloured and heavily patterned lampshades that people can enjoy in their homes.
HOW DID YOU TURN YOUR BUSINESS IDEA INTO A REALITY?
Many, many hours of research and many failed lampshade attempts that ended up at St. Vincent D ‘Pauls (a charity). My quality standards are very high, and of course my accounting background has been very handy! My family, particularly my husband Brett, are very patient!
ARE YOUR PRODUCTS MANUFACTURED LOCALLY?
I hand make all of my shades in my studio which is part of my home in Balgowlah Heights, they are each a labour of love and I never tire of admiring the finished product!
HOW CAN PEOPLE BUY YOUR SHADES?
My shades are available from my online store. I also regularly attend Mosman and Lane Cove Markets and recently made my debut at Billycart Markets in Narrabeen with my children's range. My products are also available from Galvanised at Millthorpe, near Bathurst and the soon to be opened I Heart Gallery here in Sydney. I ship to all parts of Australia via courier.