Courtney Cuschieri, of Charisma Design Studio, is a professional interior designer based in the town of Los Gatos in California. She has over 16 years of experience in the industry. Learn more about her work in this interview for byDesign!

What is your favorite part about being a designer?

I enjoy helping people and using my creativity.

Who or what would you cite as your most important influence?

My family influences my work.

Can you tell us about your personal brand?

Designs with Personality. We provide high end luxury residential new home builds and remodels: beginning from the initial planning stage, providing full sets of plans, to selecting all the building material, furnishing and finishes. We are a full service design studio!

What is your favorite color palette to work with?

Any color palette! I love color and choose specific palettes depending on project needs.

If you could travel back, what advice would you give yourself as you start this career?

I would tell myself to soak up all the wisdom from other designers around me and learn from their successes and failures. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, others are willing to help. Make connections and network. Be brave and confident. You can do this! This will help you advance as knowledge alone is not enough.

Please give us an overview of the more personal side of your business, how did it come to be, any interesting stories about the origin you can share?

I knew I wanted to be an interior designer since I was in the sixth grade. My teacher gave us a “design your dream home” project on graph paper and I was so excited to design it into reality. I ran with it and had so much fun. People along the way told me I would change my mind when I got into college but I was determined to do what I loved. My mom was very influential and very perceptive about what her daughter liked. She helped me pursue my dreams and took me to architecture and design firms from an early age to ask questions and learn from the best. She also took me to the designer showcase homes in San Francisco to help inspire me. She would buy me design plan books and I remember reading and reviewing all the different plans for hours at a time. I feel blessed to have realized early on what I wanted to do to be creative and help people achieve their dreams into reality.

Do you have anything you can share about how you and/or your firm have been affected by COVID-19, and any tips for other designers on how to navigate and cope?

I have not been affected greatly by COVID-19. Yes, I have had to change how I normally do things but I have found it to be a blessing in disguise as I have been able to install other virtual services and work with clients via Zoom and other virtual programs. I want to encourage other designers to reach outside their comfort zone and have confidence that this too shall pass and that they will come out of this health crisis stronger. Take this time to work on you and your business. There is no time like the present to change things up and add programs and services that can help the way you do business.

What do you like most about DesignerInc?

I like the diverse array of various vendors and options to choose from. I also like the Facebook group and the resources provided. DesignerInc provides tools and a dashboard that is easy to use.

What inspires you and keeps you going?

I am inspired going to showrooms and markets to see the latest new product launched for the season. I love reading about new design trends and ways to work smarter not harder. Integrating new programs or products. My family is the thing that keeps me going. Their love and support is what I need to keep presuing my passion for design and supporting them right back.

Follow her on Instagram: @charismadesigninteriors