Having the Pinterest house won’t make you happy and other design lessons with Wendy Glaister

Wendy Glaister grew up in retail, specifically in her parents’ jewelry shop, which influences every aspect of how she operates her interior design firm. It is evident in the classical music she plays as a backdrop for her social media short form video content and the dedicated customer service she offers to her clients. This summer, at Las Vegas Market, she is poised to win two ASID ANDYZ Awards for Best Residential Space and Best Showroom Space.

This week, DNN Editor in Chief Courtney Porter, sat down with award -winning designer and former ASID Central California Nevada’s President, Wendy Glaister, to discuss running a successful design firm, being an active participant in ones’ local design community, expensive design mistakes, and the emotional toll caring for clients can take. Click play on the video to watch the discussion or read on for highlights. 
one of Wendy Glaister's ASID ANDYZ Award-winning spaces
One of Glaister’s ASID ANDYZ Award-winning spaces

Wendy Glaister’s keys for success in interior design

Word of mouth still reigns, according to Glaister, and her clients have lots of nice things to say. Her relentless devotion to her clients is evident in each story she tells, which, she warns, “can take an emotional toll.” One of the most difficult things for her is drawing boundaries because it can be a lot to shoulder. Glaister cannot help but become friend, neighbor, mentor, psychologist to her clients. She understands the intimacy of being in someone’s home, and the transformative role she plays in seeing a project through to the very end. It’s always worth it, for Glaister, though, “Knowing someone trusts you, that is everything.”

Wendy Glaister was an early Houzz adopter

There are so many business growth marketing ideas for interior designers looking to uplevel their business: hire PR, get published, do showhouses, join ASID, IDS and other networking groups, be active on social media, etc. It is incredibly overwhelming, especially if you’re a one-person shop. If you can’t do it all, where do you focus? Wendy was an early adopter of Houzz, advertising on the platform as far back as 2015. She still attributes much of her success to Houzz, and specifically to being an early adopter. For a designer getting started today, they may not have as much success on the already saturated platform. It may behoove them to get experimental and trailblaze a newer platform. Find the place in the Wild West that doesn’t already have a populated boom town and become the mayor. 

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Having the Pinterest House won’t make you happy

The “Pinterest house” symbolizes the idea of an immaculately styled and picture-perfect home, depicted in beautifully curated images on social media platforms like Pinterest. It has become a representation of an ideal lifestyle that many people aspire to attain and the reason many clients call interior designers. Glaister immediately delves deeper: “Having the Pinterest house won’t make you happy” she says. It serves as a reminder that focusing solely on aesthetics are a band aid fix for something else going on. She reminds us to avoid getting caught up in materialistic pursuits and the constant comparison with unrealistic standards. Instead, she encourages us to seek happiness in authentic self-expression, meaningful relationships, and a sense of purpose beyond the pursuit of material possessions.

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