Welcome to our Behind the Design page! Here we will have excerpts and updates about what we are working on, and some facts about the reality of the Interior Design Industry
Photo: One of our many excursions to Green Front Furniture, Farmville, VA in 2014
How we started
Beth Webb and Michelle Smith - Webb Smith Interiors
We are often asked about how we started our business, what it took, and how much investment we needed. Well, it happened pretty organically.
For years we had mutual friends that kept telling us that we needed to meet. In 2013 we finally met while volunteering at a church function. We hit it off right away and became fast friends. We both had a real passion for interior design! Beth had earned her Bachelor’s degree in Interior Design in 1997 and has been designing ever since. My background was in business and I’d been decorating friend’s homes for years. In 2014 Beth approached me about joining efforts to create our own interior design firm. Our younger kids were all school age at that point and we were both ready to take on a new challenge. It was a pretty easy and exciting decision.
First step, figuring out our business name. We threw around lots of ideas and probably got way too many opinions. Smith Webb sounded like a weapon (haha!) so we settled on Webb Smith Interiors. The first thing we did was immediately acquire our domain name, Instagram name, Twitter (before it was X) and Facebook page. Then onto the State for our LLC, registering with the IRS and the county. We had an accounting firm create an Operating Agreement for us. (Always a good idea, even with friends. Good paper trails protect good friendships.) As equal partners, we each invested $1,000 to get our business launched. We had our own computers so we started off with those. We had a logo made and I created our (old) website, a pretty daunting task for a newbie! Beth had beautiful projects she had designed so we started with those in our portfolio.
Now, this was in July of 2014, the middle of summer, with 4 young kids between the 2 of us. Yikes! That made for a bit of a juggling act to say the least! If we weren’t in front of a client, our kids were with us. We dragged them all over town, the county building, office supply stores, Target, HomeGoods, pretty much everywhere (We’d give that experience a 1 out 10. Would not recommend!) It was all definitely a big adjustment for us and our families. Things got easier once school started back up. We began to have some normalcy to our routines. We were very focused on building our business while still being present for our kids. Anyone who is a parent knows that the work/life balance is always a challenge. Our first rule for our business was “Family First”. We still live by that rule.
Thanks for stopping by and learning a little about Behind the Design!