Cincy Chic: Why did you start your own business PC Design LLC?
Paige Castellini: After working as a designer for more than 10 years, I wanted to reach new demographics and give people an affordable option for interior design. My hourly fees start as low as $25 for simple advice and ideas. People can definitely justify spending that versus spending $100 for one hour and not getting much “bang” for their buck.
Cincy Chic: We love the concept of your “Virtual Design.” How does it work?
Castellini: I think the best way to tell you about this process is to give you an example:
Let’s say you’re looking to re-do your living room but have no idea where to start and are just tired of what’s there. You will e-mail me some photos of the room from different views, such as from a corner or outside a door into the room. Then, send a description of what you’re looking to do and the budget you’re working with. It doesn’t have to be a lot, but enough to give us an idea. We’ll reply to your e-mail and then go through and put some ideas together for a “Starting Plan.” At that point, I will contact you, discuss the fee and decide if you want to implement the design or if you would like us to do it for you.
It’s very simple, commitment free and “virtually” inexpensive. You decide what you want to do, in the time frame you want to do it in. No pressure!
Cincy Chic: What’s the biggest home dècor mistake you see people keep repeating?
Castellini: People are very afraid of using different colors, limiting themselves to what they call “neutral” shades such as white, cream, beige, taupe and off-white. There are so many color choices available and ways to include color in into your plan, it’s just a matter of finding the right one’s that work together in your home.
Cincy Chic: What’s the most important advice you can give those overwhelmed with home decorating?
Castellini: It’s always best to consult a professional to take your ideas and put them all together into a coordinated plan. It will save you time and costly mistakes in the long run.
If you don’t know where to start, my clients find this very helpful: go through home magazines, pull out some pages that catch your eye or see yourself comfortable in. Lay the pages out in front of you and circle what appeals to you most. Show them to your designer, if they are qualified, they will be able to tell a lot about what you are trying to achieve just form the selections you have made.
Cincy Chic: What’s the most fun/interesting project you’ve worked on locally?
Castellini: A nail spa in Kenwood. Not only was I the designer, but also the general contractor. It was the first commercial project of this caliber for me. I did a lot of research on codes and state requirements. We took a storefront, that was previously being leased by a printing company and didn’t have the proper water flow for a salon. We renovated the entire space, including bringing new water lines in from outside to make it “salon compatible” It was challenging and an incredible learning experience and the clients were very happy with the final outcome.
Cincy Chic: How do you define your sense of style/dècor? How is your house decorated?
Castellini: I love soft modern looks. The dark wood finishes, like ebony and walnut are very sharp, especially when mixed with lighter upholstered pieces. In my home, I have taken that idea and mixed in some 1920s antiques to create a very comfortable, modern environment. I typically keep my upholstered pieces solid in color, and bring patterns in with the window treatments and area rugs. Since I am also an artist, I take a lot of time coordinating the right pieces of art with their surroundings.
Cincy Chic: Where do you get your decor inspiration from? Any local spaces that you’re in love with?
Castellini: My inspiration comes from looking a tons of “home” magazines, reading trade articles and looking online at manufacturer sites to see what is available. I also like to get out and shop around, see what stores are displaying and see what customers are buying. I absolutely love the dècor of the Cheese Cake Factory in Kenwood. They have created a wonderful ambiance with soft, inviting colors mixed with metallic finishes. The lighting is also impeccably done and the fixtures are beautiful. The food is also really good!
Cincy Chic: Any exciting projects you want to share with everyone??
Castellini: Right now, I’m getting a lot of calls from people wanting to spruce up their home for entertaining friends and family through the holidays.
Cincy Chic: What’s your favorite thing about Cincinnati?
Castellini: I love that Cincinnati isn’t flat. I love the hills and the neighborhoods situated in the hills. You don’t just drive down one road straight through the city. They are winding, tree lined, and tons of old architecture with lots of character. But my favorite spot is in Kentucky, on 75, at the cut in the hill going North, just as you come around that last curve and the view of Cincinnati comes into site. I love it!
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Photo: Courtesy of PC Design LLC