Photo by Julia Atkinson for studiohomeonline.com
Julia Atkinson began blogging way back in 2008 whilst jumping between travel, ski instructing and being self employed in the interior design industry. She now runs her blog Studio Home full time.
1. What made you want to blog?
It was a bit of a sweet combo of circumstances really. In early 2008 I discovered Design Sponge (insert: http://www.designsponge.com/) which acted as a gateway to the design blogging world for me. I totally fell in love with the casual vibe and inspirational content often connecting readers directly with independant designers themselves as opposed to via a store or even the “un clickable” pages of a magazine. I had a small interior design business at that stage and thought that it could be a great way to make it stand out from the rest….but ultimately it really boiled down to my passion for the creative industry in my part of the world and the fact there were no other sites focussed on this at the time.
2. Where do you find all the amazing people we read about on your blog?
I’ve been trawling around the internet for 6 years now, so have a large network to tap into! Many of my posts profile new offerings from brands/people I have blogged before – I like to check in on their progress and they are great at keeping in touch. I am lucky enough now that I get quite a few submissions which is awesome and without a doubt Facebook and Instagram are the BEST for keeping tabs on my favourites and being introduced to exciting new brands.
So yeah – I spend a bit of time online…
3. What is your favourite thing to cook?
This is a scary question as cooking is not a strength. I’m going to say I like to eat Mexican the most as I am ok at cooking it.
Moving right a long….
4. Can you tell us a little about your work in the interior design industry?
I moved on from my life as a young ski instructor and retrained as an interior designer at the age of 23. I worked a lot in the furniture industry which I really enjoyed then had a bit of an ignorant brain spasm and at 25 decided to ditch my good full time job and go out on my own as an independant designer. (hmmmm….my Dad used stronger words…)
Despite my total ignorance in running a business (of which I have learnt many lessons !! ) I was lucky enough to work closely with a residential building company and get creative with the realistic budgets of young families. I also designed and furnished 2 houses for the national Heart Foundation Lottery which was cool (and VERY challenging re budget!) and was lucky enough to lead the charge on a complete re design of a historic pub into a fresh and popular restaurant.
I moved back to the ski industry in Marketing in 2010 and since then have only taken on a handful of projects. Having been full time with the blog for just over 12 months now, I don’t think I’ll be dipping my toe back in the design industry. I definitely think it requires time to cultivate all those trade relationships and product knowledge, not something for a part timer.
Of course I still LOVE watching all the innovative design happening from the sidelines!
5. What are your plans for Studio Home in the next 5 years?
Working alone on Studio Home means I am constantly wading through a million ideas and have difficulty weeding out the unneccessary ones! But in short – plans for this year are big and I’m not looking much further than that at the moment.
This year I am hoping to do a NZ road trip interviewing and holding seminars focussed on Online Media for the Small Creative Business. I have almost finished developing a doc on this which I plan to use as a basis for talks with creatives,students and have downloadable from my site.
I’m also mid way through getting a really new project off the ground…its so exciting but I can’t quite share yet! Lets just say its taking my relationship with the creative industry down under up a notch and I really hope my readers are going to like it!
Finally my ultimate is to do some travel beyond my normal planned visits to Australia and go further a field to interview Kiwis and Aussies seeking their creative success out in the big bad world!
We’ll see…we’ll see…
6. What are your three favourite blogs?
These do change for me but at the moment:
Miss Moss : http://www.missmoss.co.za/
Design Love Fest: http://www.designlovefest.com/
Cabin Porn: http://cabinporn.com/
Thank you for your time Julia we will be off to read more of your blog ASAP. Visit Studio Home to see more.