In our ongoing Designer Spotlight Series, we talk with interior designers and architects to see what inspires them, and get insights to how they approach creating beautiful spaces… This time we asked PJ Hurst to give us some insight into how she approaches her work.
Stikwood: How long have you been in business as an interior designer?
PJ: I started my career in the design world ten years ago and established my own firm four years ago in Bend, Oregon—offering full service interior architectural and design services.
Stikwood: Tell us a bit about your business and experience:
PJ: My career began in business and marketing at a major accounting firm quite a few years ago. While I loved it there, I craved to fulfill my creative side and decided to go back to design school. After years of working full-time and going to school full-time, I completed my BFA in Interior Architectural Design at California State University, Long Beach. Soon after, I started working for a variety of boutique interior and architecture firms in Los Angeles.
I spent much of my early days in Los Angeles in the commercial architecture and design world—designing for hospitals, restaurants, hotels and high-end luxury interiors. The majority of my time was spent honing and developing my skills in the commercial world of private airports while I was at tammy edmonds DESIGN (teD). A proud moment in my career was at teD where our biggest project in San Diego, CA received the highly coveted Calibre Award. This project was awarded a LEED platinum certification.
My time there gave me such a robust understanding of construction practices and design sensibilities on both large and smaller scales. My husband was offered a job in Bend, Oregon. We both took this opportunity to unwind from the hustle and bustle of daily commutes in Los Angeles and focus on our little family. I started my design firm from there, focused on small commercial and residential interiors projects—including remodeling two personal homes we have owned.
Stikwood: Your designs are fresh—modern but human & warm, which we love! What role does Stikwood play in your designs?
PJ: Thank you. A well-designed interior space can be both mood enhancing and help shape overall life experiences. So much of our time is spent indoors, especially these days. By injecting a mix of spatial warmth, texture and simplicity into a space—it allows it breath. I have always loved bold high-contrast spaces - balanced by warmth and texture.
A space that allows your eyes to shift seamlessly into a space. Stikwood enables a designer to creatively use it as a textural and defining element within a space. I have used Stikwood commercially and in residential projects with such great outcomes.
I have used it as a diagonal pattern on a door, horizontally and vertically on the wall. My most recent endeavor using Stikwood is placing it horizontally on a kitchen island. The tape strips and the thin application is extremely easy to use without the smell of applied glues. It is important for me to use products that are eco-friendly and sustainable—with very minimal waste at the end of a product. If there is any left—hey, just use it on another project.
That’s how I have ended up using the Stikwood Charcoal product many times over. I love the look of Shou-Sugi-Ban (the traditional Japanese art of charred wood). The uses for it are endless.
Stikwood: What would you say is your “signature style”?
My design style is timeless with a warm and fresh modern sensibility. I often incorporate principles of Scandinavian design—mixing a bit of nature with new, vintage and repurposed pieces to create a thoughtful and timeless appeal. With attention to detail, my goal is to honor the purity of a space, while injecting our client’s vision, lifestyle and atmosphere into each project.
Stikwood: What was your favorite project using Stikwood products? What made it so special?
I absolutely love the custom diagonal patterned door we created using the Stikwood charcoal product in our Forest Modern home. We made the pieces a bit skinnier to give the door a more refined feel. By using a table saw and splitting the length down the middle and cutting them at a 45 degree angle to fit, it created a stunning and custom unique door. I love the flexibility to Stikwood horizontally, diagonally, vertically, on the ceiling, walls, on furniture or doors—the uses for Stikwood are really endless. The quality and uniformity of the Stikwood product enables each project to have predictable and exceptional results each time I have used it.
Stikwood: What is your best piece of advice to offer someone who wants to redecorate a room on their own?
Start with a plan and develop a palette you love. Then create a budget in the beginning. Projects are typically more expensive than you first think. But don’t let this deter you. Think creatively. Find antique or vintage items for cost savings, then SPLURGE on that amazing light fixture and a bit more on the flooring. Don’t over-design, but don’t forget the details. They are THE MOST important part of a project – like the Stikwood horizontal charcoal door. I have received the most comments on that wonderful detail.
Stikwood: Where can people go to find out more about your services?
"A well-designed interior space can be both mood enhancing and help shape overall life experiences. By injecting a mix of spatial warmth, texture and simplicity into a space—it allows it breath."
- PJ Hurst