I am just so excited! My kids recently started their summer break, and that means we are just weeks away from our annual family road trip. Call me crazy, but I look forward to these 30 or so days in the car with my husband and our three kiddos (9, 7, 3) more than any other event or holiday all year long.
Thirty-ish days on the road, seeing friends and family, exploring new cities, gaining inspiration by the different sights and cultures, and ultimately just being together. It’s really what I work towards those other 11 months of the year . . . for the opportunity to just be with them.
Well that’s not completely true, because I absolutely LOVE what I get to do and who I get to do it with. And honestly, I’m still a bit in awe that I get to do it at all. Four days a week I create spaces. Spaces for families to live and grow, spaces for businesses to serve others, spaces where people will gather and be together.
When I think and reflect on how and why I get to create everyday, I almost always default to the thought that I just fell into this work. Which to some degree, I did.
Sometimes you just fall into what you are supposed to be doing. Necessity can reveal a passion. I never knew I wanted to grow up and be a designer and home stager. I always pictured myself pursuing investigative journalism, cracking cases and breaking the news, like Lois Lane from Superman.
But when my first two kids were toddlers, my husband was in the house flipping business. He would purchase homes that needed remodeling and updating, and then he would fix and sell them.
At that time, the market transitioned from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market, but we found that when a house was staged and styled, potential buyers would be better able to envision themselves in the home, and voilà, my career was born.
When I first started, I would shop every sale aisle, and when I couldn’t afford to purchase anything else, I would just shop my own house.
I would take art off of our walls, pillows off of the sofas, and even the bed from our master bedroom! Staging these homes allowed me to help my husband’s business while also igniting a bit of creativity in me. And I ran with it!
While the staging business continued to grow, so did the need for a designer for many of our clients. When the opportunities presented themselves, we jumped at them. I was excited to start designing homes for others, something I had already been doing for my own family.
My husband and I spent six months gutting and remodeling our little ranch house in 2012. We walked into our home pre-remodel and just knew the potential it had. While it hadn’t been updated since the 1970s, we could see past the low ceilings and choppy floor plan, and we opened it up to create a space that we could enjoy together with family and friends.
I learned so much about renovation during this time. We filled in a sunken living room, vaulted the ceiling, added reclaimed barn beams, shiplap and wood floors. The list goes on and on. As I dreamt up each space, thinking about the memories we would make there and the friends we would host, I fell in love with design. Designing spaces to gather in, where memories would be made, and anyone could just feel at home.
As Lexi Grace Design has expanded our scope of design, we have also expanded our team and space. Most definitely out of necessity, the LGD barn was built and now houses our staging inventory and design studio. And although we pretty much melt in the Arizona heat, it offers us a space to be together as a team and create 9 months of the year. It also makes for a pretty fun space for floral workshops, birthday parties and other events.
With every space and each client, our style has grown and evolved. While we offer multiple styles for our staging and design clients, I can confidently say our signature LGD style is bright and airy with lots of texture and natural elements. We pull inspiration from all over and love incorporating what we discover as we travel. Above all, we strive to design spaces that anyone can feel comfortable and at home in, whether you are actually home or not. Spaces that encourage belonging, conversation and community.
It’s funny; when we began to really identify what it is we want to bring to our designs, we started to attract clients that embraced the same thoughts and practices. Belonging. Community. Togetherness. Home.
As Lexi Grace Design grew, so did my family. We adopted our daughter at the end of 2013. The desire to create a sense of home and belonging had never been stronger and the ability to share that with others is a crazy benefit to having this platform with my clients and community.
Through the LGD shop, we get to invite others into our adoption journey, and we have the chance to help support home and belonging for someone else. Anyone visiting our website can purchase a HOME shirt, and all proceeds go directly to support an adoptive family or first-mom.
Sometimes when I think about my career and what I get to do everyday, I look at my team and just laugh.
We get to hang out all day and design? We get to style living rooms and kitchens? Pick out tile and play with paint colors? We get to meet with clients as they dream about their new homes, their baby’s nursery, their bedrooms?! We get to tell others about adoption and support families in the adoption process?! This cannot be real life?! And we get to do these things together?! Crazy!
I truly, truly have to sit back and reflect from time to time. When things seem too good to be true, or too hard to see clearly, I just reflect and remember, and I am so thankful for what’s in front of me right now. And right now, it’s a month in the car with my kiddos!
We will explore 17 southern states, swim at the beach, tour the space center, hike the Smokey Mountains, and most importantly, we will be creating memories just being together . . . because that’s what home really is all about: sharing it with others. No matter how beautiful the space, or where you are, what matters most is who’s there with you.