At RDG Planning & Design, we recently celebrated the grand opening of a new office in St. Louis. This office has a concentration in senior-living interiors. Our key partners in this new office. Kelley Hoffman and Catrina Cook, are building a fabulous team of passionate designers who are committed to quality environments for seniors.
This is starting to sound like an infomercial and that is not my intent. I do, however, want to amplify the value of interior design in senior living. It is amazing that many interior designers feel that senior living does not offer enough fulfilling, design opportunities. Really? From benching office layouts to bistros to theaters to amazing worship spaces, senior living is a microcosm of almost every type of interior space available.
The reality is, as resident-focused as we want to be, the marketing efforts in senior living are targeting the 50-something adult daughters. These adult children are influenced by HGTV, Pinterest and good design--in positive and negative ways. This interior influence is especially true when it comes to the first and lasting impressions that interior design can foster. What aspiring interior designer wouldn't want to engage in this wonderful world of senior living? There are opportunities galore!
As an architect, I understand that an interior designer can have as much, if not more, impact on the quality of life for our seniors. They truly make a house a home through their design eyes and attention to detail. We need great interior design to complement and enhance the architectural environments we are creating!
Personally, I think we need more young interior designers AND architects engaged in senior living. This involves those of us with more highway behind us than in front of us to invite others to join us on this journey. Then we must mentor them through the journey. I call this inviting and investing for our future. More to come on this topic.
SAGE is well positioned to be a key player in this inviting and investing strategy. Through education and networking, we can create a sustainable design community that is passionate about environments for older adults. We have a strong community of interior designers as stakeholders in SAGE, but there is always room for more.
Let's keep our eyes open for those talented people who can be difference-makers in senior living. Our elders are counting on us!
PHOTOS: The Ridge Senior Living, Salt Lake City, Utah/Alan Blakely Photography/studioSIX5