Thurman Design Studio, Nashville, TN
How did you first discover Universal?
Coming from a design background, I was already familiar with Universal. But, when I opened my own interior design firm it became especially important to have a furniture resource that ships quickly and is set at a reasonable price point, so these Universal features really caught my attention. Plus, with so many different styles to choose from, I know the pieces can appeal to a wide variety of my clients.
What makes Universal one of your go-to resources?
Universal is a great fit, and I can use their products for various projects. I especially love the Universal To The Trade website because it is easy to navigate, and it allows you to order on the spot. Because I do so many of my client presentations in digital format, it’s great to have such amazing imagery at my fingertips.
Which To The Trade program feature does your business benefit from the most?
With an average ship window of about 2 weeks or less, I never have to worry about if a delivery is going to hold my project up; I know that shopping Universal will always help to propel the timeline of my projects forward. I also love how I can be working into the wee hours of the night and the website is always accessible to me. I can order everything I need right then and there. To me, that’s invaluable.
Tell us about your latest design project.
I actually just completed a design project where I sourced about 80% of its pieces from Universal. This project was inspired by my client’s love of color as well as some major core updates that needed to be done, including the kitchen. My client was willing to go bold, which I love. She really likes some of the more cleaned up, modern lines of furniture, but also appreciates a really ornate lamp or a funky bookcase. So, I knew Universal would be the best resource for me as I designed this space, since I know I will find quality pieces in a variety of motifs.
What was your design philosophy for this project and others?
My design philosophy for this project and in general is definitely inspired by my travels, with Cambodia being my favorite destination so far. It is so interesting to see how color is used differently throughout the world. I really believe that traveling can be one of the best ways for any designer to learn and grow. I also make a point to try to include items in my designs that have some kind of story, which always adds an element of interest.
What was your favorite Universal piece to include?
My client was really adamant about wanting to have a large, statement bookcase that she could style with photos and other cute trinkets. Once I found the Martel Etagere, we both agreed that it was the clear winner. This was the one piece of furniture that really set the tone for the rest of the space. It was important for me to find a piece that added height and drama to create a more elevated, fascinating design.
What were your highlights from fall market?
Hands down, the amazing green Wells Accent chair with Moore & Giles leather in the new Soliloquy collection! I have already ordered those. They were so cool! But overall, I was really impressed by the subtle introduction of color into the showroom. That is just what I’m drawn to. I also noticed that the styling of the showroom was really fun and quirky in general, from neat pillows to other unique accents. Those smaller touches really helped to create an overall positive energy.
See more of Laura’s work at thurmandesignstudio.com or on Instagram @thurmandesign