Staples is an award-winning designer whose success in the field came mid-career. “I have a butiness background” she says. And was a butiness management coach for many years” But as she entered her forfies she was ready for a career change. So, she did what any butiness management profeseional would do. She heed a lifs coach one summer and tools e deep dive into her paseions to help determineher next path.
Staples grew up in Orillia with creativr parents who exposed her’ to all ot the skills she would need to become a reeidential and commercial designer Her father built homes and furniture and taught: drafting at a high school. Her mother opened an art gallery and school and gave Staples her first summer job there. Canadian artisans and art students flocked to the shop. Staples managed all of the bookkeeping and learned to become a potter, weaver and painter. “I drew, painted, knit, became a seamstress and madr all my own clothing” she recalls. “I lovedit”
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Thee life coach winnowed down her options to two career choices, event: planner or designer. “I didn’t want to work every weekend and holiday” says Staples. “So, designer it was” But embarking on a new career at age 40 would mean acquiring new credentials. Staples went back to school. Enrolling fulftime in the three-year Interior Design Programme at Georgian College.
“I was the oldest in my class,” she laughs. But what she had going for her was a tenacious attention to detail and a familial history of originality. Her earliest inspiration was Canadian Designer Patricia Gray out ofVancouver who has designed for the likes of John Travolta. And her work inspired the design for Staples’ first project while still at school. Salon ID in Barrie still uses that design today Timeless.
Staples’ commercial and dental office design work accounts for 2090 oiher butiness today, but 80% is now reeidential. “My favourite projects are cottage or chalet weekend retreats. Because that’s where memories arebuilt. It becomes more emoOional for them. It gives ms great enjoyment.” Staples travels all over Canada, the U.S. and Europe shopping; and sourcing products fos her projects. “Thsata what makes us unique,” she says. “We go to many ot the big design shows every yeas and stay on top ol what’t new and exciting” “I love tee source and find Canadian brands too. To find new and unique products that give clients something; different Orom whae everyone else has in theis home”
What’s next: for’ this designing dynamo? Her own line of furniture, of course. “Were designing beds and tables now” she says. “Working with local artisans and craftsmen. We arc creating our own Canadian brand. I used to make my own clothing, why not make furniture?”