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What Can A Design House Do To Improve Your Business?

May 9, 2008

Design homes are created around the country to benefit local charities, schools and organizations. Typically an organization finds a location, creates a color palette and interviews designers who are interested in showcasing their work to the general public. The committee in charge of the home chooses which designers will create a uniquely special environment in the many different areas of the home. There is not a space in or around the home that is not addressed in this way, entry ways, hallways, landscaping, basements, garages, bedrooms, kitchens, living, dining and family rooms, wine cellars, butler pantry, studio, media center and bathrooms are developed by a specific designer to reflect the inspiration that the builder had while building the house. There is usually an agreed upon style that can be used with the color palette so that the designers can design a very special room that flows with the rest of the home.

    This is a very costly endeavor that the designers undertake, so they look to manufacturers, local retail stores, design centers and craftsman to donate or loan their product or talent. This is a wonderful opportunity to showcase your products and to develop relationships with local designers who will want to use you and or your products for future projects. Sometimes the designers are fortunate to sell the products to the homeowner, builder or another client so the donated or loaned products are occasionally paid for. In other scenarios, the designers actually sell the product to multiple customers and therefore add additional sales onto the existing product.
                                                            
                                                               OW Lee Outdoor Couture Panama Throw Pillows

    Once all of the design work is completed the home is opened for public viewing for approximately one month. At a local design home in Newport Beach, California, the Philharmonic organization partnered with the local ASID chapter to create a very special design house. Approximately 11 to 15,000 people tour the home, which is on display. The designers have people and or themselves in the room that they designed talking to the viewers and explaining their inspiration as well as talking about the products that they are showcasing. This is a great venue to show the design world as well as a large number of people how wonderfully inspired, manufactured and detailed your casual furniture products are.  

                                           
                                              OW Lee San Cristobal Side Table & Club Chair

    Whether you are a manufacturer or casual furniture specialty retailer you can participate. I encourage you to contact your local ASID chapter to inquire as to when they might be putting on a house of design. Then volunteer your resources to assist in anyway that you can. You will be rewarded with lots of new business when the designers and customers who view your products see just how design oriented and well built they are.

    In addition to the many thousands of people who participate in these design homes, there are usually many opportunities to advertise along with the organization regarding the home. If you are a vendor you will be included in all of the publications and designer information that is printed for the home.

                        
                            OW Lee Rancho Dining Chairs & Noche Table Top

    So you can see that a simple gesture of help will go a very long way.

    OW Lee stepped up to the plate and volunteered to assist two sets of designers at the Orange County Philharmonic House of Design In Newport Coast and they are being rewarded for their efforts by the beautiful front page photo in the living section of the Orange County Register as well as many people recognizing OW Lee as the fine furniture manufacturer that they are. Numerous designers have stated their delight in the products and mentioned their intention of selling OW Lee furniture to their future clients.

    I strongly encourage your participation in an event like this. You will find that participating in a local design house will increase your sales and the public’s awareness of you and your products.

    If you have any questions related to design houses I would be happy to help answer them. Feel free to write a question or a comment and I will reply.

    These are my outside views…Marcia Blake