Interior design, like art, speaks to each of us in a unique way. Stepping outside of your comfort zone and combining paints, textures, and fabrics in unexpected ways results in great design. Others, however, believe that great design is about simplicity, clean lines, and modern furniture. Good interior design necessitates a thorough understanding of how to choose and apply materials, finishes, colour, light, and other elements. The intimate knowledge of how all of the many pieces come together, including the numerous interior pieces, is what makes the project a success! Cabinetry, built-ins, trim details, tile selections, paint & stain colours, flooring patterns and selections, countertop materials, plumbing & lighting fixtures, and so on must all be taken into account in the same way that the floor plan of your space is. When it comes to interior design, these elements all too often fall short, and the entire structure suffers as a result. When it does come together you get a place which you can truly call your home.
Susan Semmelmann understands this sentiment well. She says, “I believe that the spirit of living is in giving.” I’ve been in the construction and design industries for 25 years and am passionate about assisting others in assisting others. A home is a reflection of you and your lifestyle, how you live, and how you want to feel when you’re in your happy place. Home is so named because it is where we find life. I want to give my clients what they want through design so that they can relive the experiences and memories of knowing it was designed for them and those they want to share it with.”
Susan Semmelmann Interiors, her design firm, justifies the ‘custom’ in custom-made. It was launched in 2019, and she brought 23 years of design and construction experience to the table. Susan stepped out in faith, armed with extensive expertise and a crystal-clear vision, to begin her new venture with no clients and only a handful of employees willing to join her journey. When the number of clients quickly increased, she had to hire more designers and key personnel to manage her ever-growing clientele. In three years, the company has grown exponentially, with 70 projects in the works and unquestionably in high demand. Floor-to-ceiling feature walls, fireplace surrounds, ceiling details, cabinetry, tile design, and integrated lighting are just a few examples of the firm’s construction detailing options. They also have an in-house line of custom drapery, bedding, and upholstered furnishings made from luxury fabrics sourced and purchased directly from mills. They also offer custom-made beds, benches, ottomans, mirrors, and headboards. “If you can imagine it, we can build it!” she declares emphatically.
Values and Success
Susan did not achieve success overnight. She admits that scaling her business correctly presented many challenges, but she also believes that challenges are opportunities for growth. “I truly believe that the quality of life is determined by how you choose to perceive it. It all comes down to perspective. Difficulties are unavoidable, and when they arrive, they reveal character. It’s critical to maintain your integrity no matter what happens,” she adds. Her primary goal in building her business is to maintain loyalty, relationships, and a strong connection among her team members. She asserts that if the emphasis is kept on the significance of core values, the work will always reflect a high level of excellence, resulting in a trusted brand.
Today, the firm has become the talk of the town as a result of networking, word-of-mouth, and recognition from peers and contemporaries. “We are a turn-key design firm that can walk our clients through the entire construction process. From soup to nuts. We offer a wide range of custom consultation and design options, as well as hundreds of high-quality vendor lines offering art, décor, and furnishings,” she says. To address any supply-chain issues, the company focuses on diversifying product access and availability to meet the needs of its clients, including designing and manufacturing high-end furniture.
Susan also has a close relationship with the Fort Worth-based non-profit, a Wish with Wings. For the past 35 years, this organisation has granted wishes to Texas children suffering from life-threatening medical conditions. Susan recently presented them with a fully customised transformation of their office lobby, which she created using her personal resources. “It is my absolute joy to give to those who give selflessly to others,” she declares proudly. Susan and Marc (her husband) have become known as the “wing people” as a result of their involvement with these organisations, and they prefer this moniker; they use their wings to lift others up. They currently both speak publicly and counsel others on the value of faith and hope. “If my mission to bring joy and life to those around me is fulfilled then mission accomplished,” she states.
Reaching out for innovation
We’ve seen what happens when businesses don’t innovate. They may have been industry leaders decades ago, but their unwillingness to adapt to changes in consumer behaviour and technological advances may have rendered them obsolete. To differentiate themselves in a crowded market, successful business leaders must be innovative in order to keep up with changing demand and remain relevant. Driven by this want, Susan and her team are creating something exciting in Fort Worth. It began as a cautious commitment to take on 2,500 square feet of retail space and has now grown into a 10,000 square foot enterprise on Vickery Boulevard with plans for an online presence and off-site storage to hold goods and products. “The Vickery location will house the firm’s office as well as Fort Worth Drapery and Fort Worth Design Studio,” she adds. It focuses on making these resources available to the public and providing more options for other designers to offer their clients.
The end goal is simple. To make each client’s experience special and make their dream worth it. “They are trusting us with their hearts’ desire for their homes. Client relationships should be treated as partnerships, with all parties invested in finding the best solution. Incorporating our clients’ feedback into product design is possibly the best way to strengthen these relationships. When you start collaborating on the same wavelength, you can create something that is not only staggeringly beautiful but also emotionally satisfying,” asserts Susan.
Living your Dreams
On paper, living a dream life is simple, but making it a reality is difficult. In several ways, your ideal life will differ from that of others. It does not imply that there is only one ideal dream life to live. Some people define a dream life as working at a job they enjoy or being able to enter a flow state of mind while working. Others define it as being in good physical health, having a loving family, and having a large network of friends. Finally, a living dream life is one that you consider fulfilling, purposeful, and satisfying. And just because you want bigger and better things doesn’t mean your current life is unsatisfying. You must stop running from your purpose if you want to live the life of your dreams. You were created to live a meaningful and purposeful life, and as Maslow stated, the only way to be at peace with yourself is to live the life you were created to live. Susan puts it this way, “I like to move through life and experience the days as they come. I’m launching my dream later in my life, and it is the most amazing experience that I hope will inspire others. I will always be in process, and that makes life a grand adventure!”