Chicago Design Summit 2016
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Chicago Design Summit 2016


Last week, I had the pleasure of delivering 2 presentations to a variety of design industry professionals from around the country at the Chicago Design Summit. The one-day, trade-only, event is billed as “the Midwest’s largest residential design summit for interior design, architecture and luxury custom homebuilding” and was held at the Merchandise Mart in Near North Side, Chicago City.

This year’s summit showcased 31 innovative programs, Continuing Education Unit (CEU) seminars and events featuring industry luminaries, strategic social media partners and over a dozen well-respected editors, along with 8 open houses, 7 new showrooms and 29 product debuts.

I was asked by Lefroy Brooks, one of the sponsors for the event, to deliver two CEUs:

– 9:00am, Feng Shui & Interior Design: this seminar explored the relationship between these two intrinsically entwined concepts and discussed the many different ways designers can support and empower their clients through the creation of beautiful, engaging spaces.

– 4:00pm, Feng Shui Materials: this session took a closer look at the philosophy of Feng Shui, identifying a range of specific fabrics, furnishings, and surface materials that can help promote the well being of a home’s inhabitants.

Both sessions reached full capacity and were enthusiastically received by attendees. It was great to see such a high interest in Feng Shui and holistic design from all kinds of design industry professionals (from architects through to suppliers and, of course, interior designers). My groups were particularly interested in cures for architectural defects, approaches to talking about holistic design with clients, and solving personal problems through Feng Shui.

Other popular presentations included “Designing for Millennials”, “5 Secrets to Social Media Success”, and “Beyond Green: Educating the Industry on how to Create a Cleaner, Greener and Safer Home.” It became increasingly apparent throughout the summit that designers are looking for new and exciting ways to incorporate holistic design practices in luxurious ways. Many are also looking for fresh ways to engage with the Millenial clients by integrating them into the design process itself.

A big thank you to everyone that attended my sessions and stayed after with questions. What a joy it is to do what I love with such a warm, receptive group of colleagues from around the country. Many thanks to the stellar teams at Lefroy Brooks and Cooper & Graham for this wonderful opportunity.

‘Till next time!


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Julie Schuster Design Studio

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