Rachel Guest is the founder and CEO of LookNook, as well as the company’s lead designer. Want to know more about Rachel, and the vision behind LookNook? Just ask her.
How did the idea for LookNook evolve?
As a designer, one of the things I appreciated about the traditional design process was helping clients discover their own style. I always asked a ton of questions, showed them many inspirational images, and sorted through functional details to suss out what would make them feel most comfortable in their space. That’s when the fun begins! I enjoy playing around with all the design ideas and relationships within the space. This part of the process has no rules for me, and because of that, I often find that clients will expand their comfort zones in unexpected and inspired (and inspiring) ways. It’s what I like to call free-range creativity, where there are no boundaries.
Fifteen years of experience working with clients helped shape the concept for LookNook. At the core, why I love designing, is what I believe to be the transformative power of creating a true “home” where there was once simply “space.” The greatest investment most people will ever make is the purchase of their home. Most people care deeply about what their home looks and feels like, so it can truly reflect who they are. Having a designer’s input to help create cohesiveness and harmony with all the products they love is an opportunity most would truly appreciate. Unfortunately, the traditional interior design model is cost-prohibitive and, simply put, somewhat intimidating to most potential clients. LookNook turns that model on its ear by making the process affordable, accessible, and as easy and pleasant as shopping online. We are really very excited about it and feel everyone deserves the chance to experience great interior design in their own home.
Tell us about your designs:
In addition to the designs I create, LookNook has a team of dynamic designers who curate room looks for living, sleeping, eating, playing and working. We categorize those designs in a number of ways: by styles ranging from traditional to modern, contemporary to eclectic to cultural, and everything in between. We also curate by budget at an array of price points, which is critical to offering the experience to the broadest base of clients. Our design process truly is for everybody – it appeals to a huge variety of tastes and budgets.
So, say I’m a potential LookNook client. What’s the process?
Great question! You can browse LookNook just like you would any online shopping site or inspirational idea site. You can browse our design boards by the type of room – or nook – that you are looking to transform. Or, you can browse by style – or look. Every board contains 13 items, curated from a variety of vendors to create a design that can be unique and fitting to you. When you find a look you love, you can purchase a LookList, which is a detailed shopping list that tells you exactly where to go and purchase each item. In a traditional interior design project, that process of finding a workable design starting point could take weeks and hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars. If you tried to do all that research yourself, it would be overwhelming and a lot of work and you may never achieve the look you’re going for. We allow you to have fun getting to that starting point, and all you pay for is the LookList, which costs much less than even an hour of a designer’s time.
What if I want to customize a LookList?
That’s the beautiful part. When you purchase a LookList, you’ve basically purchased the ability to speak with one of our design consultants to help you customize your order. If you want to swap in a different chair for that room, we’ll help you find one. If you need to change certain sizes or colors for a specific item, we’ll do that with you. It doesn’t cost you anything extra.
How do I order?
Well, if you want to order on your own, you simply take the LookList and you’ve got all the details you need to purchase those items at retail prices. But, if you like, you can call our design consultants and order through LookNook, which has some added advantages. For example, we have negotiated discounts with all of the vendors represented on the site. That means if we order for you, you pay less than if you do it on your own. Also, some of our designs include items that are only available when purchased through a designer. Those items won’t be available for purchase unless we purchase them for you. If you really want to save time and spare yourself from doing the ordering, we’ll even oversee the entire delivery process for you for an additional fee.
Sounds amazing! What else would you like the world to know about LookNook?
I suppose nearest to my heart is to emphasize the relationship between the materialist environment and the empowerment people can experience by creating a home that emanates the best of who they are. One should never underestimate the power of feeling good in one’s own space and how your space can truly affect how you feel about life, your productivity and your aspirations. If you aren’t feeling that at home, it’s hard to find harmony in the world around you. Also, within each design created at LookNook, our entire design team believes every design should be given its best execution. By that I mean we design with sustainability and quality in mind because these products are significant purchases for each individual. And if the old saying “home is where the heart is” is even a little true, helping people choose what to bring into their homes, and hearts, is incredibly important to all of us!
Nature’s Bounty Dining Room – Inspired by the beauty of nature, this design mixes natural materials, neutral colors, and clean lines to create an inviting dining space that will please almost any design preference. It’s all in the details in this eclectically curated design.
Really Retro Living Room – This eclectic living room design is elegant while still comfortable and inviting. Retro and fun, this space mixes mid-century modern furniture, neutral accessories, and gold starburst accessories.
Muted Melody Bedroom – This design is blooming with sophistication and features a warm walnut bed frame and dresser, dark teal and paprika colors, and asian influences. Mirrored surfaces reflect traditional patterns, and muted textiles mingle with sleek furnishings. Create a suite retreat with this exquisite bedroom!