Member Spotlight

    Member: Sallie Kjos, Grey Hunt Interior, LLC - South Riding, VA


    When did you realize that you wanted to become an interior designer?

    Growing up, I was always influenced by the design world, so much so, it blended into my life pretty seamlessly. My dad worked on restoring vintage cars & building houses. He would always quiz me on the color pallets used and how to get the perfect shade of whatever color I could imagine plus style of homes with detailed information. Pair that with my aunt’s store, named the English Cottage (my family is from England), and I was already half way to being a designer! It was here I would obsess over the antiques, home décor items, and whatever knick knacks I could get my hands on to make my own styled displays. And luckily for my aunt, I was pretty good! So when college rolled around the decision to pursue a career in interior design was an easy one. I loved being able to create and make things beautiful and complete!

     Who was the first interior designer to make an impression on you?

    This is probably a very common answer but Martha Stewart, of course! I’ve always thrown myself into doing arts & crafts, being creative, even some DIY. Really seeing the beauty in what others considered leftovers. I’ve always loved taking what is in front of me and creating something unexpected. Another tip I’ve taken from Martha- to always go above and beyond. Whether it was with hosting or décor, she always went the extra mile to make everything come together. Now, with my own hosting and work in design, I am sure to pay attention to the details. This goes beyond the overall look of a room but focuses on the impression a space has on your mood, comfortability, and most importantly- functionality.

    What are some of the things that influence you, aside from furniture and décor?

    Art is huge for me! And of course, framing art as well. It really gets me every time because it can totally make or break a space. It continues to set the tone for how you want your home to be seen, or how your home is a reflection of you. It really is an additional dimension to design that is personal to that very space. It what helps make the room an individual with its own voice.

     What are your go-to basics?

    As much as I love black and white and all its contrasting goodness, I tend to work with calming color pallets for my clients with lots of grays/neutrals and building color based off of preference. Especially in the Washington D.C. area, everyone needs a chill pill when they get home. And in this case, I am the pharmacist and the chill pill is their home! Additionally, what products you use in a space matters as well. Products can have a big influence in how your home looks, functions, and performs overall. So, making sure I’m always working with fab but dependable trade companies is important to me.

     Are you seeing any particular style requests trending amongst your clients?

    As I mentioned before, I am always getting requests for calming spaces with clearer colors and more open floor plans. But at the end of the day, the overall look and feel truly depends on the client.  Some want dark and dramatic and some want light and bright.  I feel that it depends on how they want to use their home as a retreat.  Some want to have the happy light and bright and others want the sophisticated lounge feel.  Like pour me a cocktail & chat or listen to Getz & Gilberto.

    Aside from particular styles, I have noticed my clients are more knowledgeable on trends, designs, and they are ready to dive in to customize and be brave.  I love hearing “I want a large-scale wallpaper” or “I want to ditch the builder grade for my dream kitchen and bath” and the best is, “I want to take these walls down!” YES! Let’s stop thinking inside the box- take down those walls and begin designing in, out and on top of the box!

     What’s been your career highlight to date?

    Being featured in Home & Design Magazine as one of their “Hot Talent” designers was a great honor! As things continue to grow, I’m excited to see what’s around the corner for me, my career, business and life. Aside from that, being able to transform people’s homes is a never-ending highlight. Especially when the project has ended and my clients thank me from the bottom of their heart- It just gets sweeter every time!

    What’s the most treasured item in your own home?

    My boy’s Greyson & Hunter of course!  My business is named after them and the reason I work so hard.  I want them to be proud of their mom, to see all I can do, and how I try to make things better and more beautiful for others.

    Now, switching to designer Sallie to answer this one, I would say as far as my home décor- my gold round convex mirror that belonged to my Poppy (grandpa). It was brought over from his Bungalow in Watford, England after he passed. Since I always adored from a young age, I got to keep hold of it!