Sandra Blank, of Blank Space Designs, LLC, puts her heart in her works. She believes that while some people look for beautiful spaces, her company creates beautiful places instead. Learn more about her work in this interview for byDesign.
What is your favorite part about being a designer?
Getting inspired by the simplest idea or tiniest object. Then developing it into something that just grows into a full-fledged design with all the wonderful details. There is no greater feeling of knowing what and where the final product all started from.
Who or what would you cite as your most important influence?
I want to say something profound like the Parthenon temple in Greece or the Hermann Miller chair but, honestly what influences me most is the most cutting edge design. I look at who’s current and relevant today and what good design is coming in the future.
Can you tell us about your personal brand?
Some people look for a beautiful space and we make a space beautiful. We put our heart and soul into creating a beautiful and custom product that’s always unique and personal.
What is your favorite color palette to work with?
I love all color palettes but, right now I’ve been working with a lot of muted tans, pale pinks, warm whites in conjunction with some warmer tones of black. I like the grounding feel of the unexpected color of black in the mix.
If you could travel back, what advice would you give yourself as you start this career?
Don’t sweat the small stuff! Being a very detailed person I would spin around and around trying to fix the smallest things because everything had to be perfect. I wasted so much time doing that. I realize now that in most cases it doesn’t really matter in the big picture of it all and most people don’t even realize the difference.
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 changed careers late in life. About eight years ago, I was laid off from my job at a major corporation and told my husband that I want to do something that I’ve always been passionate about which was interior design. He said: “I’ll give you three years to figure that out.”
So, I enrolled in school and as I was attending a design program at the local college I thought that I needed to get some kind of experience to prepare myself for when I graduated. I thought that if I could use my prior skillset of project management to get my foot in the door somewhere that I could see how things really worked. I got a job as a project manager with a small investment firm that “rehabbed” homes. Initially, I helped them develop some processes and procedures and asked if I could eventually help with some of the design elements. They gave me a bathroom to design, then they gave me a kitchen and after a year or so I was designing entire homes from top to bottom and interior to exterior.
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?
Since SIP has been implemented I have been holding my client and vendor meetings online via Zoom. I like the idea of still seeing their faces and reactions. Instead of texting everyone like I normally would to save time I now have been making more of an effort to call to make more personal connections with clients, vendors and contractors.
What do you like most about DesignerInc?
I love the variety of products and the ease of navigating the website. I also appreciate the support when I have questions. The staff is always quick to respond and very courteous. I honestly also like reading Designer Spotlights (like this one)! I like finding new vendors and am interested in other designer’s stories and portfolios and looking at their websites. It’s a great way to find other designers from all over the nation.
How do you plan to continue to grow your business after the SIP has ended and with limitations still in effect?
One way I plan to do that is to diversify in my business. I plan to use technology more for client meetings and plan to start selling products online. There is still going to be caution around everything for a long time to come so we must think in innovative ways to keep our clients engaged as well as creating new prospects.
Follow her on Instagram: @blankspacedesignsllc