Make Life Beautiful with Heidi Caillier
Heidi Caillier makes living beautiful look effortless.
Before starting her Seattle-based full-service interior design firm, Heidi Caillier started a blog to document her interest in interiors, leading to her first job at a design firm and eventually starting her own studio. A master of pattern and tone, Heidi is known for her unexpected blend of elements and styles. Heidi’s character-driven work has true staying power, and her layered, lived-in spaces have a way of feeling well-traveled, timeless, and fresh.
We’ve been long inspired by Heidi and the beautiful spaces she creates and were excited to catch up with her about her approach and process. Scroll through to read our Q&A and explore a few of Heidi’s favorite things.
What was your very first job — ever?
My first job was working the front desk at a Vet Clinic, and I think I made about four dollars an hour.
Tell us about your journey into the creative industry; when did you realize that you could turn your passion into a career?
After getting my master’s degree in Public Health and jumping around to different jobs trying to figure out what I wanted to do in my twenties, I started a design blog to document my interest in interior design. Funnily enough, that blog led to my first design job at a firm in San Francisco, which led to another. I learned a lot about the interior design business while working under designers for a few years before I went out on my own and slowly built my business from there, one project at a time.
If you could go back in time and give your young creator self one piece of advice, what would it be?
Don’t stress out so much! Also, hire a team sooner.
Where do you find the most inspiration for your work?
I find a lot of inspiration from design books, print magazines, and Instagram. Instagram is like a portal, and it works like a chain where you discover one account that leads to another. I’ve made so many great connections from it, and I think it can be a really great source of inspiration.
What does your creative process look like?
I think of ideas for my projects constantly — when I’m running, traveling, driving or just during my day-to-day activities, and I keep them all in a long-running list. When I sit down to start a project, I regularly reference that list and pull from it when I need inspiration. We start every client project with a Pinterest board and gather images to give us a starting point and a visual direction.
I only work on one project at a time in each phase, which really helps me compartmentalize my ideas and focus on the work. Each of my projects is unique, and each home I work on has different needs, so I could never pull from a project that didn’t come to fruition for the next. Every space calls for something different.
Your work has such a strong sense of character; what tips would you have for others looking to add that feeling to their own spaces?
I never want my spaces to feel overly designed, and I think it’s all about creating individuality by incorporating a mix of pieces from different sources. When you walk into one of my projects, I don’t want you to know exactly where everything is from—adding in layers of pattern, texture, and coziness can go a long way in bringing a feeling of character to any space. Also, never underestimate the power of a great vintage piece.
Which upcoming project or endeavor are you most excited for?
We’re working on a new build in Colorado that I’m really excited about. It’s always a challenge to infuse character into a new home, and we have a lot of ideas to bring it to life that I can’t wait to implement. Plus, my design book — “Memories of Home” will be released in Fall 2023 with Rizzoli, a huge dream come true for me.