Owner Spotlight - Ashleigh Underwood
I’m Ashleigh Underwood, proud owner of Ashleigh Underwood Design.
I look forward to sharing my story. I hope that you will enjoy getting to know me better.
I grew up in the world of design and architecture. Although my parents were both in the business, I did not grow up with a lot of awareness of their work. What I did appreciate from that time period was the beauty that was all around me in the hotels my father designed and built, in the homes that my mother decorated, in the way that our family was supported by the elements of the home to create beautiful gatherings, wonderful family moments and special one on one experiences that I will never forget.
As I got older, I recognized my interest in style but felt overwhelmed by my parents’ own success in their fields. I initially got a BA in International Relations from American University but was unhappy with the work prospects. I moved to LA and began working with the brilliant designer Mark Cutler and while I was at his firm we were named as a Top 40 Interior Design Firm by Robb Report. Mark encouraged me to go back to school and was so incredibly supportive of my education.
When I left his firm in 2009 due to the recession, I attended UCLA full time and then started my own firm the following year. It has been such a blessing to be the master of my destiny and the trusted guide to so many families as they recreate their home to be the perfect space for them.
Today, people are looking for value in whatever they purchase whether it is services or goods. This was the major take away from the recession, and I think that it has been a great thing for the world of interior design. Our clients ask us to explain and teach them about the value of the goods that they are purchasing and to understand the deep wells of knowledge that we bring to a project. Gone are the days of people buying furniture that they don’t plan to keep long-term and gone are the days when you could get by as a decorator alone, now we truly are a guide for our clients.
I absolutely love the personal connection that I feel with my clients. I feel immensely blessed and grateful that they have chosen me and have entrusted me with something as personal as their home. This is a trust that I find overly exciting. I love to get to know each member of the family and to serve their needs and wants. Nothing beats the smile and pure pleasure on the face of a client and their family on moving in day. To be able to envision all of the magnificent things that they will do and experience together in their house fills me with genuine joy.
I believe that each family is unique, each person is unique, and it’s my job to reflect that in the design of the home so that each home is truly a reflection of the people that live there. I feel that I provide outstanding value to my clients and provide them the tools and the freedom to live their lives to the fullest. However, none of my work would stand out if I lacked mutual respect for my clients and their families and ideals. As designing their home is a responsibility entrusted to me, I believe I must also be honest and truthful in all my dealings.
These values have helped me cultivate relationships with my clients and have led to renewed ties years later. One instance that pops into my mind was when I once spoke to a family, and at the time they realized that the home that they were living in was not their forever home and so they decided to move. Two years later they excitedly called me to say that they were ready to work with me. To know that somebody kept me in mind all that time stopped me in my tracks. It was such a compliment and one I will always be grateful for.
While designing is my passion, when I’m not at work, I adore spending time with my toddler and two dogs. I am an avid reader of historical fiction and books on personal philosophy. I also love to cook, it calms me, and of course, I love the final product.
I am also very committed to educating parents about the correct way to buckle their kids into their car seats and car seat safety in general. Here in LA, car accidents are so commonplace, it is essential to buckle in your kids nice and snug, and rear-facing until they grow out of their car seat!
I have enjoyed sharing my story about the things which matter to me and how they influence the way I do business.
If you or someone you know could benefit from my expertise in interior design, kitchen renovation, bathroom design in Los Angeles, California, I invite you to get in touch. Please visit my website at www.ashleighunderwooddesign.com.