Lauren Liess: Expanding from Designer to Lifestyle Brand

Episode 8 June 30, 2022 00:39:34
Lauren Liess: Expanding from Designer to Lifestyle Brand
The Interior Collective
Lauren Liess: Expanding from Designer to Lifestyle Brand

Jun 30 2022 | 00:39:34

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Show Notes

The line between interior designer and lifestyle influencer is a fine one. The Lauren Liess brand has expanded from Interior Design Studio to include the Lauren Liess Blog and The Property Collective, in addition to three books (with a 4th on the way), numerous TV features and dozens of product collaborations. Lauren Liess’ entire brand evokes a feeling of home across all channels. Her brand feels like those late, slow hours of summer afternoons that seem to linger a little longer than the day before. It feels like the neighbor you grew up next to. As her brands expand, as do her offerings, we’re talking about how to evolve into a lifestyle brand as an interior designer here on The Interior Collective.

The Identite Collective and IDCO Studio present The Interior Collective, a podcast for the business of beautiful living with your host, Anastasia Casey and guest Lauren Liess of Lauren Liess & Co.

 

In this episode, Lauren and Anastasia discuss:
  • How Lauren got her start in the industry
  • The process of publishing three (soon to be four) books
  • Expanding into e-commerce and product lines
  • The role video content plays in brand building
  • Why lifestyle was the natural step for Lauren

 

Mentioned in the episode:
 
 
Thanks for reading an excerpt of The Interior Collective Season 1, Episode 8: Expanding from Designer to Lifestyle Brand with Lauren Liess. You can listen to our episode on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or access the full episode transcription below. You can follow Lauren on Instagram and visit her portfolio of work at the Lauren Liess website.
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Episode Transcript

Anastasia 00:00:02 Hi, this is The Interior Collective, a podcast for the business of beautiful living presented by IDCO studio and I'm Anastasia Casey. Today's episode of the interior collective welcomes Lauren Liess as our guest and current and beloved IDCO client. We're working with Lauren Liess on three different website projects, as well as a few client systems and processes right now. The Lauren Liess brand has extended to interior design studio, Lauren Liess's lifestyle blog, and The Property Collective, in addition to countless books, TV appearances, and product collaborations. Lauren Liess's entire brand evokes a feeling of home across all channels. Her brand feels like those late slow hours of summer afternoons that seem to linger a little longer than the day before. It feels like the neighbor you grew up next to. As her brands expand, as do her offerings. We're talking today about how to evolve into a lifestyle brand as an interior designer. Lauren and her husband, David, run their interior design firm in Great Falls, Virginia, just outside of Washington, DC. They've made their own home as magical and as functional as possible with a relaxed attitude towards perfection. Living an indoor-outdoor barefoot lifestyle with five children, Lauren embraces when things tell a story–because that's what real life is and that's what is beautiful. Anastasia 00:02:03 Hello Lauren, and welcome to The Interior Collective. Laren 00:02:08 Hi, thanks for having me. Anastasia 00:02:09 I am so honored to have you. You poor thing. You're fighting a cold, you're listing her house this weekend. I cannot believe you squeezed us in. We are all so grateful to have you. Laren 00:02:21 I'm so excited that you invited me to do this. Anastasia 00:02:24 I have already given listeners the background, not that you need any introduction. But I know we really wanna focus on creating a lifestyle brand as an interior designer. It definitely is a space where it kind of feels like that could be the next step. For many interior designers, we have lots of interests. There's lots of places where lifestyle and home obviously bleed together. And you've done such a beautiful job establishing that. And you just live that so fully and so openly. And I just wanna get all of the nitty gritty details about it. So if you could start, where did The Lauren Liess really begin? Laren 00:03:06 <laugh>. That is so funny. I started out, I guess when I graduated from college. I was doing my first apartment and I realized that decorating my apartment was way more fun than my job in communication <laugh>. So I was like, I'm having so much more fun, thrifting and painting and doing all of that than I was at my real job. So I took a distanced learning program and then started staging houses and then started turning those clients into design clients and then just kind of kept going from there. Anastasia 00:03:37 Amazing. So you majored in communications and that probably explains a lot of what we're gonna touch on a little bit later, cuz you do such a good job with sharing your life and sharing behind the scenes. So we'll get into that in a bit, but I want to really kick things off with noting that you are the most organized, easygoing, yet detail oriented client we have ever had at IDCO. You've been such an immense pleasure to work with and you've facilitated the smoothest projects in IDCO history. How? How do you have so many irons in the fire while still always being so chill and relaxed? Laren 00:04:19 You know, honestly that makes me teary–you saying that– because I don't see myself that way. So I really appreciate you saying that. Somewhere along the way in the beginning, I heard someone say something like ‘there's no such thing as a design emergency’. And I think that's just kind of applicable to so much of life. We have so much to be grateful for–we can choose to freak out about things, or we can choose to be okay and be thankful for the things that are going well. And I feel like it's just kind of a choice. When I was 23, when Dave and I were getting married and I had just seen my cousins go through these sort of bridezilla wedding planning situations and they were the sweetest humans, but they acted crazy. And they were upset about things. And I was just super conscious at that moment– do not want to do that to the people I love. And so I really coached myself to not worry about anything as it came, and over the five months we were planning our wedding, it started to become habit. And so we were like, well, this is gonna be like a microcosm for how we treat our life. We were like, it's about us getting married–who cares about little Jordan almonds or whatever. So I've tried to very consciously keep my level of happiness or contentment as an important factor when working, and doing things, and trying to keep work in perspective. Anastasia 00:05:52 I love that. That's such an important note that there is no such thing as a design emergency. I know that people listening will probably have a gut reaction and say, that is not true. I have had design emergencies and there certainly could be moments when something goes horribly wrong. But unless the house has caught fire, unless it's flooded, most things can be tended to in a few hours or a few days. So thank you for that–very important reminder. We are not doing brain surgery and we don't need to live our lives with that level of stress. Laren 00:06:28 Absolutely. Anastasia 00:06:29 So let's rewind a little bit. You currently have three beautiful books and you're working on your fourth! Am I right? Laren 00:06:37 Yeah. So I'm working on a fourth and a fifth. The fourth one is a design book, but the fifth one is the kids' book. I'm working on those right now and, just kind of digging in. We're at the photo shoot stage of the fourth design book right now. Anastasia 00:06:52 Amazing. That is so fun. I can't wait to see the kids' book as well. What significance do you feel like your books have had to your brand as a whole? Laren 00:07:02 For me personally, they've been major. They are these sort of experiments where writing helps me process, and think, and come to conclusions, and develop my style and philosophy of living. So each book just kind of helps me grow and solidify my thoughts. So it's really great to verbalize things. I'm very much a list writer and a writer in general. Once you have a really strong handle on what it is you want to do, and how you're trying to help, and what you're trying to achieve–it becomes easier to do everything, whether that's designing someone's house because you have a stronger handle on what it is you're about or whether it's publishing an Instagram post. Once you kind of figure things out, which the books have helped me do, it just really helps in all forms of communication. Anastasia 00:07:52 I feel like your books have really established your visual aesthetic and your visual point of view so, so, so much. I know for many designers a beautiful coffee table book is such a bucket list / check mark type item. How do you feel that the books have really contributed to the trajectory of your career? Laren 00:08:17 You know, I think they've been really helpful. I think it helps establish you as an expert in terms of if you're going for furniture lines, or product collections, that kind of thing. When you share your expertise, you begin to be looked at as an expert and it helps you become one. I think it's been good for self-confidence and in going after things. You know, we love what we do. We create these interiors and it's so fun and you love doing it for your client, but then it's so fun because you can show what you did and sort of help other people, and connect with other people, and readers, and kind of let that project live on a little bit more, which is really fun. Anastasia 00:09:04 Yeah. That's such a good point. I've never considered the fact that it just helps establish your expertise as you expand into other lifestyle elements, such as collaborations and collections. That is such a good point. I do wonder though, how freaking hard is it to write a book?! <laugh> Laren 00:09:24 You have to love to write. I would say that if you're writing your own book, you have to enjoy the writing process because it is intense. I usually take about a month off or three weeks off and just hit it every day from the moment I wake up to going to bed and just really go at it. So you have to enjoy the writing process or you have to hire a ghostwriter, which is great too. People do that as well. It just costs money but it… I think it's very much like designing a house or producing something, you have this vision for this thing that you want to be, and you really don't stop until it's perfect for you and right. For you knowing that it's not gonna be for everyone. You have to be a little bit vulnerable and soul search a little bit and dive deep to do it. Anastasia 00:10:22 What do you feel like your books are able to convey that you can't in other platforms like social media or your website or the blog? Laren 00:10:31 You know, I think the books are slower and more intimate. People are often curled up on a couch with a book. I love seeing pictures that people post when they have my book and they're sitting on a porch swing, or a glass of wine and they're like, ‘the kids are gone, I'm reading her book’. <laugh> You're reading it at a different time when you're on your phone. I think lots of times, it's borrowed time–same with on the computer. But with a book you've sort of made a conscious decision to go and treat yourself. So I think people's mindset is a little bit different. So you can speak a little bit more slowly, and tell a bit more of a story, because you have more of someone's attention and time. You can go deeper. Anastasia 00:11:16 So to the designers who are listening, who dream of penning their own book in the future, where do you start? This feels like such an abstract concept. Like I'd love to have a book. So if you could break it down into a few actionable steps, where we can all go find book agents, or get book deals, like, what does that look like? Laren 00:11:36 So I'll kind of share my process with you. I think this seems to be how it works, but I'm sure there are other ways. How it worked with me was, I was writing a blog for years and a book agent approached me about writing a book. And so I wasn't ready at the time. I think we ended up writing the book maybe two or three years later. I came back to her, I was like, ‘I don't have enough pretty projects. I'm just getting started. You don't wanna see these jobs on glossy paper’. But for me it was, and I think for a lot of people, it's that agents start approaching you. I don't know how you go about getting an agent, but I would guess that there are ways to find them–I don't know if there's listings, but I think there's ways to ask people. But agents are always looking, and they are looking on Instagram primarily now, and it was blogs. Laren 00:12:29 They're looking in the shelter publications. So putting yourself out there to get noticed is huge. And developing your voice, your style, that aesthetic through the images that you're putting out there. When an agent sees that you have a strong point of view, they're interested. And I think it comes down to also really finding out who you are honing in on that and learning about yourself because no one wants to see this same book that's already been written. So it's what's differentiating you from everybody else? You've gotta do you and embrace what you're about and really communicate that and put it out there. I think they'll find you, or there's probably a way to find them. And then from there what's really cool is a good agent will work with you and say, ‘this is how you do a book proposal. Laren 00:13:18 Here's the formatting’. She was like, ‘come up with a concept’. So like, okay. And I went back a few weeks later, ‘here's my concept. Do you like it?’. That was for Habitat, the Field Guide to Decorating. And she was like, ‘yeah, this is great’. And then she shopped it to publishing houses. So then she made like an auction–I don't know if they all do it this way, but my agent did it this way, where she basically had an auction. And then the five publishing houses could just bid on the book and you pick from the offers and you go with the one that you want. Abrams is my publisher and I just adore them. And the day before I was like, praying ‘I hope the right thing happens’. I went to my bookshelves and pulled down all my favorite books. Like some of them vintage books from the seventies and stacked them. And my favorite book stack was all Abrams. It was this huge stack, and then like I had a couple from the other publishers. I was like, ‘oh my gosh! I pray that it's Abrams’. And so it was. It just kind of worked out. Anastasia 00:14:24 That's amazing. I can really say from my end I have a lot of designer books and I definitely feel like your books being published by Abrams, they just have a different, tactile quality that really bring it to the next level. That again is just so reminiscent of your brand and how grounded everything is and how things are so tactile. So I think you found the right publisher. You mentioned one thing, saying that the agent had come to you. Just to clarify, you did not write a book before you got an agent. Laren 00:15:02 No, and I didn't write the book until I got the book deal because it takes so much time. Anastasia 00:15:07 Got it. Laren 00:15:07 Just a proposal. And for that proposal, you basically are gonna wanna write a table of contents title, and then introduction, and a sample chapter, is usually what's required for each proposal. Anastasia 00:15:20 That is so helpful. Laren 00:15:21 Then you just hammer It out and fill it out from there when you get the book deal. Anastasia 00:15:24 So you also mentioned that when you were first approached, you were like, ‘my projects are not book ready, this is not where I'm at’. I know when we're pitching things to get published in magazines and whatnot, we're told we have to withhold our photos of projects. Do you have any insight, if that was true with the book as well. Were you not allowed to share projects? Did you have to start saving up projects over years? Laren 00:15:47 Yes. My contracts have an 80/20 rule. So 80% cannot have been previously published. Now it gets really gray with Instagram, and I'm really on the fence myself about this because I'm always hiding my best work because it's four books. And so it's really hard. And then I see the people that share everything and I'm like, ‘oh my gosh, that's amazing’. They're putting their newest stuff out there, at install. And I'm like, ‘why am I sitting here following the rules?’. <laugh> As a reader of a book, I also know the feeling of paying $35 or $40 for a book and opening it up and being like, I've seen all this on Instagram before. It's really hard. I don't blame anyone who does that because trust me, I leak a bunch of pictures when I get right before publication. Laren 00:16:39 I start to leak the images, but it's just really hard. I think there's probably a balance. I don't think some publishers care as much as other publishers. It is to protect you, because you're gonna get reviews on Amazon saying, even though I know my book was 80/20, I still would get a review on Amazon ‘well, we've seen all these projects before’ and you're gonna get a one star review. And that one star review will keep you from selling as many books. Anastasia 00:17:09 This is kind of personal and you can certainly not answer, but what, what made you decide, I know as designers who are getting started, like their current work is so, so influential on the kind of work they're gonna book next, and if they're gonna book another project, a dream project. What made you decide that it was worth withholding your best and brightest projects, to save it for a book versus potentially having those to share and propelling to the next great dream project? Laren 00:17:45 That's such a good question. I haven't really thought of it before, but you putting it that way I think writing books is as important to me as my design business. I guess it's not a tiered thing–they're probably on equal footing. So I almost look at those readers as clients in a way. And so I wanna do them justice and I don't know if it'll change, but I'm also very happy with the clients I have, with the clients coming our way. I'm sure if I wasn't, I'd be like, ‘get those pictures on the website right now’. So I'm at a happy place with what's coming in our door. It's because the book is not, it's not secondary to the business–writing is just as important. Anastasia 00:18:34 I think that's such an important distinguishment and something for those listening to consider. When you are really thinking about a book deal, is it going to be more important for you and your business to be able to use those projects right away? Or do you know that there's a few projects and it's probably more than a few, you probably need quite a few projects for a book, and you can set those aside before deciding to move forward. So just a little tidbit that I wanted to get some insight in. Thank you so much for sharing that. Thank you for explaining the mystery, the magical mystery of book deals <laugh> But there's way more facets to the brand. So in addition to your authored complete bookshelf, you also have a growing eCommerce business. In our experience, eCommerce is very challenging to maintain your brand integrity and the emotion of your spaces. How are you able to bring your signature over to the shop without watering down the brand? Laren 00:19:35 Gosh, I think that that's a challenge because the things that often sell the best are the least expensive items. So you're always looking for those deals that people will buy. But at the same time, you wanna sell your furniture and the things I've designed, which are furniture, and tile, cabinets–all those more big ticket items. I think when you mix those things with the sort of less expensive, but still awesome things that you just put around the house, you get a good mix. We started ours during COVID because most of our design jobs just came to a total halt. We're like, okay, we've gotta make money somehow. So we just started it up andit's always evolving. Anastasia 00:20:26 Yeah. What, one thing I think is interesting, you do sell fashion pieces. You sell clothing that is so well curated and so cute. I was looking through it with the team yesterday and I was like, ‘dang, those pants are adorable for $35’. What made you decide to bring in that aspect of the lifestyle brand? Laren 00:20:46 You know, I think, and again, it, like when we started this, it was during COVID and I remember just being like, I really want comfortable clothes, but I don't wanna wear sweats every day. <laugh>, which is me. A lot of days I wanna wear comfortable clothes, but don't wear sweats. Um, and I, I guess for me, our brand is sort of a whole lifestyle and it's everything from food to clothes, to music, to gardening. And so it's just sort of one aspect of what interests me, um, and what I like to think about and share. Um, and, and then also I was getting a lot of, you know, you'll get DMS, like, what are you wearing? Where'd you buy that? And you're kind of like, well, why am I sending all of this to like, you know, free people, you know, when I could design something and sell it. So some of our pieces are resold. Some of them are designed and have our label on them. So it's been fun. And I would say our clothes are probably our biggest sellers, which the mom jeans <laugh>, Anastasia 00:21:45 That is amazing. We will link those mom jeans and everything else in the show notes, but then let's shift back to furniture because logistics of eCommerce freak me out. As a web designer and developer, that often comes up when people are like, well, how am I gonna handle shipping? And that's not for me to figure out. So how do you ship to Sally Sue in Idaho who ordered three sofas from you and how has your team prepared to scale that? Laren 00:22:20 So we have relationships with shippers. I have two different furniture lines, and both of those furniture companies will work with our shippers to get furniture delivered directly white glove into somebody's house for the smaller items. We have a warehouse and somebody working to pack everything up and send it out. Anastasia 00:22:39 Got it. So you have it figured out. And so your lines, which you've designed are being built specifically for you, they will work with the shipping companies that you've established relationships with and they'll get it to anybody in the continental United States. Laren 00:22:55 Absolutely because our furniture is sold on, not just my website, it's sold on like One Kings Lane, Wayfair, like it's sold all over the internet and in boutiques all over the country. So if we have to ship somewhere, how do we get to here? They'll tell us right away where it needs to go to do we have a great, like our, our teams are awesome. Anastasia 00:23:16 Well, that sounds amazing. Cuz it's been a major pain point for so many of our clients now talking product lines, you have some amazing collaborations. And one of my favorites is your cabinetry line with Unique Kitchens & Baths. How do you choose what projects or products make for a good collaboration? Laren 00:23:38 You know, for me, it's, I have my eyes on, in general, like anything that goes in the house I kind of, or I guess on your body even. I think it's just like what is sort of a staple in my life and in my clients' projects, I wanna be able to design and get my hands into and, and really make tailored. So it's kind of like going after like kitchen cabinets is obviously a huge one because for so many years I would work with our contractor cabinet people, which would potentially be different depending on where in the country you're working. And I would always be like, I need this hand finished. And I mean,I've literally put like coffee and tea on things and hand finished wood before. It would be such a time suck just trying to communicate what you wanted. So when UKB approached me, I was so excited. I was like, oh my gosh! So it took us months to develop those finishes that I was after. But once we have 'em, now I can just easily spec them for a project. And people who don't hire us can get that look too, which is really fun. Anastasia 00:24:41 So in that instance, UKB reached out to you, but for things like your tile line for your hardwood floors, did you approach partners that you already loved working with? Or how does one manifest a collaboration like that? Laren 00:24:56 So for all of our partners, this is a really interesting thing. All of our partners that we have, approached us. Anytime I've ever approached someone, it has been a big fat door slam in my face, truly. So it, it is one of those really crazy things where it's goals that I write down manifesting or whatever you wanna call it. But I literally will write down what's on my list to go after. And those things just kind of start coming into your door. But we have not approached any of the ones that we have partnerships with. And I, I guess I find that people are, they seem better to work with and will do more for you when they feel like they found you versus you asking them for. So, um, it's just never worked out the other way for me. Anastasia 00:25:44 Interesting. Laren 00:25:45 I dunno if I read up desperation or what <laugh> Anastasia 00:25:48 If you're listening and wanna approach her about a line, contact details are in the show notes. I personally get nervous and being someone who really likes to be in control, I get nervous about putting my name aligned with another brand like that. What are questions you ask or how do you ensure that the Lauren Liess brand is executed to the quality that you would've done if you were doing it yourself? Laren 00:26:19 Yeah. I mean, we got very lucky with our teams. In some cases we had already worked with people before and knew of the quality. In every case we sat on samples, touched, actual kitchens with, with these doors in them. Used the hardwood floor, uh, tile had been working with a Kassa for years. So there were companies also, that's actually interesting now that I think about it. Most of the time there were companies that I had established relationships with and knew their product, not all of them, but always had to see and touch it. And, it's about the people mm-hmm <affirmative> because it could be the most beautiful project, but if you don't feel right with those people, it's going to be such a pain for you. Like we love our partners. Anastasia 00:27:09 What elements of your brand are you unwilling to compromise? Laren 00:27:16 Hmm, I think, I mean like the easy answer would be quality. <laugh> I think for me, it's how things look, feel, and function. You don't just want something that's pretty, like when you actually touch it feels plasticy. That was one of the, really the most important things for the kitchen cabinets with me. I had worked with manufacturers before who could get the color finish I wanted, but it was also the touch. Um, so how things feel, uh, is really important to me and also consistent quality because there are some companies you work with that can deliver a little bit and then they can't keep up that quality level, um, for, for sure. And then I think the people that I work with, it's really important to me that they trust my vision and that I'm not they're, I've done partnerships before where, um, you're just kind of asked to stamp things off that someone else designed and I that's, so not what we're we will do. Um, so we've actually had it, sorry, my <laugh>, my cough comes at you. Um, so we, we just always make sure that we're gonna have a really high level of control of the final company that consist around Anastasia 00:28:27 As a small business owner. It's more important than ever to ensure you're legally protected. IDCO Studio teamed up with our attorney, Alyce to offer you professionally drafted contracts, specifically for interior designers. You can head on over to www.idco.studio to purchase, download, fill in the blanks and consider yourself covered. Let's talk video content. You have your HGTV show where the world first fell in love with you, but you're taking it a step further on Instagram and YouTube with your darling Homework series. We love your reels and the personality they bring to your lifestyle brand. How do you make things feel so authentic while also remaining polished and professional? It's a very gray area and you just seem to make it work. Laren 00:29:16 Thank you for calling me polished. Because I do not feel like I am, but I think it's just kind of about doing the thing that you're sharing in the moment and getting it right then. We'll be cooking and it's like, your hair may be a mess or whatever, but like just grab it at that moment and make it so it feels real. I guess just try to, you know, try to be myself and just put that out there and share what I'm actually excited about at the moment. Anastasia 00:29:46 Camera time is a really hard thing for a lot of people. What tips do you have for those who feel camera shy? Laren 00:29:55 I think that it doesn't necessarily always need to be focused on you. Some of my favorite reels are the reels that I'm filming that are from my perspective. Um, and then maybe you can get a shot of you from like this side. Like it's kind of fun to show the person in the place. So you feel like you're experiencing what they're experiencing, but it doesn't always have to be you talking. Most of my Reels are just to music. I'm not even talking and I'm just going about something I'm completely in the moment doing. And so you're comfortable when you're in the moment. And so someone can shoot you while you're actually enjoying yourself. That's great. But also shooting you being the, the camera I think is great. Anastasia 00:30:39 I think that's such an excellent point that people feel like doing Reels means that you have to be speaking to the camera or looking directly at the camera, but really you could be doing walkthrough site visits while you're talking on camera. I love the way you put it, putting it from your point of view, that's such an eloquent way to express what that feels like to walk through the home. And I think that's definitely a great place to get your feet wet if you're nervous about stepping into video. Laren 00:31:07 Yeah. I struggle to like, I mean, I don't know, like I'll scroll on Instagram in the morning and you know how video heavy it's now sometimes I just want pictures. Right? I struggle and suddenly video by video of the phone up in people's faces like all excited and lots of the times its in the morning, I'm like, whoa, slow down. Anastasia 00:31:32 Another thing to help people kind of get over that posting paralysis when it comes to video is the shorter the video actually, the better it performs. That's something I struggle with a lot at IDCO because our video producer always wants to make beautiful <laugh>, you know, 15 minute documentaries on things and we're really like, we need it to be way less than 15 seconds. So if you're feeling nervous or apprehensive, because you're like, oh, what could I really cover in a one minute video? I really encourage you that like five seconds is great. It can really just be a blissful moment in your day that you're capturing. Laren 00:32:11 Yeah. I think that's for me, when I think about a Reel, I'm like I'm putting a reel out in order to evoke an emotion in somebody and capture maybe the emotion I had. And you can do that so quickly. Anastasia 00:32:22 How has video contributed to the expansion of your brand? Laren 00:32:27 I think that, you know, we are sort of spokespeople for our brand, your brands, what your business does, but you know, when your name's on the door, it's also about you. So I think it takes it from like TUD or whatever, to, you know, really experiencing what it's like, what I'm like as a, a person where I guess as my, my social media person, <laugh> side of my persona. Uh, but I do think it allows people to see a different side of you and for clients, that kind of thing. I think they can instantly either watch a video and be like, I do not wanna hire her, or I'd really love to work with her. So it helps that way too. Anastasia 00:33:04 Do you have any ideas for someone who ne doesn't necessarily want to be the face of their brand and you know, they have a team and maybe their goal is they plan to sell the firm or retire in the future and it keeps going, how does someone like that potentially incorporate these personal elements that you're, that you've talked about to expand their lifestyle brand without it necessarily being Lauren Lisa's face? Laren 00:33:30 Yeah, I think that's, again, that comes to expressing that point of view, even if you're not showing your face for talking, um, filming in a way that shows what that person is thinking and feeling. And that's what I'm sure, you know, PE what we're mostly doing when we design a home, we're expressing our client's point of view. So delve into what, you know, what's my point of view and what do I want to come across and make sure that's communicated all that you're putting out there. Anastasia 00:33:57 Here's the juice <laugh>. Uh, are there any upcoming projects or collaborations in the pipeline that you're willing to share with us? Laren 00:34:06 We have a, a couple exciting ones. Um, I think, I think I can say, I won't say who we're working on rugs right now, and I'm really excited about that. So that's what I've kind of wanted for a while. Anastasia 00:34:19 Um, well, congratulations. That's so exciting. Not that Laren 00:34:23 What I haven't signed yet, so, Anastasia 00:34:26 Okay. It's fine. You're manifesting. It's even better and out there <laugh> and of course the two book deals. So the children's book and book number four for interiors. Laren 00:34:36 Yeah. And, and we're also starting this kind of cool new branch where we're doing like vacation homes. So we're buying houses that are kind of like tear downs or, you know, whatever we call 'em lost cottages down the beach, and then we're renovating them and then either renting them out or reselling them. And so that's been really fun. Anastasia 00:34:56 That is so fun. We have a whole episode with Blair Moore from Moorehouse, all about luxury short term rentals. And so I'll definitely link that episode in the show notes as well. Cuz I am so fascinated with that business model. Now for the next question, I'm gonna try to get through it without crying because it's just a very personal thing to me as we work on our family planning journey. But as I mentioned at the top of the show, I just can't get over how polished, professional, timely and warm you are. And so easy going to work with. I find myself thinking literally every day. How does Lauren do all of this while being a very hands on mom to five small kids? If you could share one actionable time management tip, what would it be? Laren 00:35:45 Um, you made me teary saying that, um, <laugh> I, you know, I think it is just maybe goals and lists all the time. Every day. It's constantly, I have a huge Google doc in my phone and I, I read a ton every morning. And so anytime I gain a little bit of insight, it goes into this Google Doc and it's constantly shifting long-term goals. Then of course I have like my daily to-do list. It's not in the doc, but it's always keeping the long-term goals in sight written down in front of me. So I kind of eye on the prize and then the things I need to get done in a day written down in front of me and really shutting off when the work time is over shutting off and being present with the kids and with Dave, it's not easy and I'm not always good at it. It's just really trying to set those boundaries. And um, you know, I, I don't know. I don't feel like I'm great at it, but I'm always trying to improve it. Anastasia 00:36:45 I think one of the ways is that you do it so well. From someone who's gotten to know you personally, in a working relationship, but then also I follow you in the insights you do share with us is what you mentioned before. It's like sometimes you'll just be making dinner and you're like, well, let's capture this. And that's technically two birds with one stone. Like your kids are really involved in it, but you're capturing that content where people can feel like they really connect with you and resonate with you or aspire to be like you. And you captured that content in the moment and you didn't make a fuss about it. It was very much like let's just film this, let's put it out into the world and it's now off our plate and we can move forward. Laren 00:37:27 Absolutely. And we did realize early on that the staged really pretty things were not gonna be for us because it really does demand time and attention from you and the kids. And it just, it's not a good thing. You wanna just be like, you guys be you and, and for me too, I love having, I'm such a chronicler. So I love capturing those moments on video. Like sometimes I go back and I see bold videos with the kids and I, I love it and they'll watch 'em too and enjoy it. Anastasia 00:37:55 I bet you guys just must have the best family home videos because you're so good at capturing those moments throughout. So as we wrap up and as you mentioned, having this running Google doc of ultimate grand Supreme long term goals, what does the future hold for Lauren Liess? Laren 00:38:15 You know, I don't quite know. I, I hope though that it includes getting to like hit some of those dreams that, that Dave and I both kind of have in mind, but also working less hours per week. I think that's kind of one of my goals right now. Um, just like waking up happy every day and maintaining that all day long, not being affected by any of the ups or downs that work may have and, and working less hours. I don't know if that's what's in store, but that's what I hope is in store. Anastasia 00:38:46 <laugh> I love that. I am manifesting that for you. I feel like we all can relate to that. Well, Lauren, thank you so much for joining us today on the interior collective, it was such an immense pleasure. And I feel like anytime I get to chat with you, the rest of my day's trajectory is on an uphill, um, joy. You just are so pleasant to spend time with, and I'm so grateful for your friendship. Laren 00:39:10 Well, well same to you and I'm so honored that you included me in your amazing roundup for people. Anastasia 00:39:16 Well, it's gonna be a wild ride to season, so I'm glad we got to it. Thank you so much. And I'm sure we will talk very soon. Okay. Laren 00:39:25 Big hug, talk soon! Anastasia 00:39:25 There is so much in the pipeline for Lauren Liess and we are, are so excited. We get to experience it. You can follow along with Lauren at Lauren, Liess on Instagram and shop her beautifully curated signature finds at Lauren Liess and Co. If you're listening on the go amid a detail of this episode, you can find all the links, projects, and images we referenced and other details from the episode of the interior collective on our website at idco.studio/podcast, we are in the first season and trying things out. So please, please, if you love this podcast, leave us a review. It makes a big difference in our decision to release the next season. If we have questions or topics you'd like to hear next season, email me at [email protected]. Again, that is [email protected].

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