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Our Tribe: Olive + Opal Interiors

October 01, 2021

Q+A with St. Louis Home Staging and Interior Design Firm Olive + Opal Interiors

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Olive + Opal is a total #girlboss company. What are the various roles of the O+O Team?

It’s taken us a number of years, and quite a bit of advice and coaching, to realize that if we all try to do everything, we can't be effective and efficient. We each have unique skills and realized that we really hit our stride when we focus on the parts of the job that really speak to us. That being said, we love to work together as a team and we collaborate with each other in any and all areas of the business.

Melinda:Co-Owner, Lead Stager, Manager of Instagram content

Anna:Co-Owner, Lead Stager, Manager of all the numbers, LiketoKnowIt Queen, Email + Blog Creator

Stephanie: Stager, Manager of Client Communication and Scheduling, Brings the fun

Alicia: Warehouse Manager, Organization Maniac, Brings order to chaos in our warehouse

Meg: Lead Interior Designer, Manages all fo the design and styling clients

Olive and Opal Interiors with Anna, Stephanie, and Melinda
Meg with Olive and Opal Interiors

Tell us a little about Olive + Opal Interiors and when or how you started -

Melinda and I have been friends for about 10 years and we’ve always shared a similar passion for all things home décor. We both worked in Corporate positions, Melinda in advertising and myself in finance, but for years tossed around the idea of starting a small business with each other.

In 2017 we decided to start Olive + Opal as a side hustle, focused primarily on home staging in the St. Louis area. We recognized there was a great opportunity for home staging in St. Louis area and while we continued in our corporate roles for the first few years of Olive + Opal, we eventually jumped ship to dedicate 100% to staging as the business continued to grow.

Stephanie joined us shortly thereafter and our little threesome focused on growing and improving our staging business. Just this year (2021) we decided to move into a larger warehouse space and with this exciting move we added Alicia to help us manage our warehouse and inventory. And most recently, we asked Meg to join our team and launched Olive + Opal Design, which will offer home design and styling services for homeowners looking for that extra help to love their home.

"In 2017 we decided to start Olive + Opal as a side hustle, focused primarily on home staging in the St. Louis area."

- Anna, Co-Founder

What first interested you in interior design?

When I was a kid I would always render new floor plans to rearrange my bedroom. I would try and convince my parents to let me change everything around - I loved this! When I finally learned what an "Interior Designer" was, that it was an actual career, it clicked. When Trading Spaces first aired on HGTV I got completely lost in the magic of the reveals. The rest is history!

Walk us through a typical day -

Most days I get to meet new clients and walk through their homes with them. As we walk, we discuss their design challenges within each space and I offer solutions from a designer’s perspective. Other days I’m diving in a bit deeper and creating visual mood boards for my clients, allowing them to understand how their design dreams can become reality. On the really big days, I’m styling rooms and getting to reveal a new space to my clients. On these special days I get to experience that “design magic” with their reactions first-hand!

The team of Olive and Opal interiors unloading home decor products

Where do you draw inspiration from?

Design is literally everywhere! I’m often inspired by nature - the color of an ominous stormy sky, paired with the organic moss creeping up the side of a tree, down to the earthy hue of stone pebbles or sand. Likewise, there is so much talent within local artists and maker- the composition of a new painting or a crafter styling a vignette at their local boutique. There’s beauty everywhere, and it can easily be translated into your home.

Do you have a favorite designer?

Going back to the Trading Spaces days where it all began, I’ve always loved Vern Yip. His clean lines and elegance is unmatched. I’m also currently admiring Shea McGee’s effortless style. Those costal vibes are strong, gorgeous, and so natural. Emily Henderson is always setting trends and lending design advice through her blog and I love following her as well!! The list could really go on and on.

Are there any emerging trends you're really excited about?

I’m embracing this less-fussy and authentic design lifestyle. Bold and moody pops with an otherwise relatively neutral color pallet. Expect the unexpected, whether it’s a painted cabinet or a large piece of meaningful and personal artwork. I’m here for it!

"There’s beauty everywhere, and it can easily be translated into your home."

- Meg, Lead Interior Designer

What's the difference between Staging and Interior Design?

Oh that’s an easy one! Staging is to umbrella a wide variety of buyers specific to a demographic location and appeal to the masses. The style of the stage is to highlight each space to its fullest potential and paint a picture of lifestyle. Design is personal! Design is function, durability and beauty all rolled into one. It’s breathing *actual* life into a home. Staging is about setting the scene.

You were early supporters of Colin and Finn. What initially drew you to our company? How do you incorporate our pillow covers in your or your client's decor?

We were obsessed with the mudcloth and leather pillow covers from Colin and Finn. We loved the quality, and the design was so perfect for our clients with a modern aesthetic! Huge bonus that you were an STL business! I think Anna initially found Colin and Finn on Etsy, and we love watching C+F grow and evolve!

Colin and Finn pillow covers in modern space

What's your best advice for home design enthusiasts?

Just start somewhere! Find a piece that you really love and then work your way out. It can be as small as an heirloom piece or as big as a new sofa. Adding layers to your rooms such as artwork, throw blankets, and pillows, is the final touch that really pull a room together. The sky’s the limit but you have to start somewhere, don’t get caught up in the details before the big picture. You can’t see the forest for the trees.

"The sky’s the limit but you have to start somewhere, don’t get caught up in the details before the big picture. You can’t see the forest for the trees."

- Meg, Lead Interior Designer

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