Seriously, I think I have been doing visual design my whole life. It all started with my mother putting pictures of my siblings artwork in my crib to visually stimulate her baby! I would say it worked and also say if my fine motor skills had been developed enough, I would have rearranged them to my liking!
Then came my bedroom shared with my sister that I agonized over the "old" comforters handed down by my grandmother that were not going anywhere and the mismatched furniture and accessories that were all wrong. When my sister went to collage and I got to design my OWN room, I took the job very seriously. The design scheme included Impressionist "inspired" wallpaper and bedspread, painting my own bedroom furniture and changing the knobs, and hanging posters of Van Gogh and Claude Monet (alongside Michael Jackson - ugh!), the perfect accessories and I was good to go!
In between the crib and the bedroom were the countless wins (even a state fair) of the Social Studies fairs that I loved (big nerd) and the set designs of plays - I painted the cardboard backdrops of that last picture (BTW check out my mullet) and with the desire (not the father who would allow) to major in Art History in College I think it is safe to define a "theme" for a future career.
Even when I went to the career councilor in College for a direction of study, she recommended Anthropology - which at the time she was close if it were ANTHROPOLOGIE the store. After a major in City Planning, I landed at the corporate headquarters for 2 major retailers and my last place of employment, Bath and Body Works on the visual merchandising (first pic of us in New York City, SOHO) truly was the beginning for me and my business.
We would travel to places for inspiration in design and displays so when we moved to Hudson, I wanted to create and BE one of those places to BE INSPIRED. I really learned a ton from the industry and my bosses and looking back feel it was all the right path for a girl that showed the "natural" inclination. Thanks Mom for putting those pictures in my crib!