Always loving to create, Barbara Murtagh Nash had a passion for design from a young age. “I used to drive with my parents to my grandmother’s house and see old rundown farmhouses in the country. I would imagine what I could do to them and how it would look if I changed the porch or moved the windows or even just painted.” Murtagh Nash graduated from Penn State, took graduate classes at University of Miami, Broward College and the Art Institute and then began working at a small interior design firm in Coral Springs, Florida. Fast forward 15 years and Blue Sky Environments was conceived as a multi-disciplined interior décor firm and retail showroom. The small boutique firm has taken on projects of all sizes, conducted design seminars for the public, hosted many charity events and has been featured in local and national magazines.
What are you working on right now?
Residential clients that have projects of all sizes, from a bath to a whole house.
Where did the idea for Blue Sky Environments come from?
I had been wanting to start my own firm, but once it came time, I did not know what to call it. Then I remembered a children’s book that I read to my kids about the importance of blue skies and having a sunny attitude in everyday life, so I named my company Blue Sky Environments. My children’s names are Brian, Stephen and Erin so there is also a very personal correlation.
What does your typical day look like?
My job is never boring because there is no typical day. It can be everything from designing for a client, working on the website and shopping cart, problem solving, shopping for or with a client, visiting a construction site or all of the above.
How do you bring ideas to life?
Ideas come to life when you are explaining to the client how their spaces will look but what really makes it happen for them is when their rooms are installed with all your ideas and passion.
What’s one trend that really excites you?
I like to be inspired by trends but I try not to follow them. I prefer timeless interiors with a twist. I believe in the “anything can work in a space” attitude as long as you do it well and don’t overdo it!
What was the worst job you ever had and what did you learn from it?
I am not sure that I ever had a “worst job” but I learn from every job I do. No two jobs are alike, therefore you MUST take a certain learning curve away from every project. If I didn’t, then shame on me.
If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Technology is so important at this point, so I would have a better understanding of it from the beginning.
What is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Put yourself in your client’s space. If you ever are in doubt as to how to handle something, think how you would feel. This will give you the best answer.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Set objectives for your clients. It is easy to get scattered when you are doing a project that has many facets.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
I am a spiritual girl. Our world is missing so much love, therefore, I would recommend the Bible, the Torah or personal spiritual path reading.
What’s on your playlist?
Adele, Alana Morissette, Alica Keyes, the Rolling Stones and the Eagles.
If you weren’t working on BSE, what would you be doing?
I love sports, so probably working as a sports reporter or even a coach. I wonder how I would be accepted on the sidelines of a University of Florida football game!
Three people we should follow on Twitter?
Not a Twitter girl, sorry.
When was the last time you laughed out loud? What caused it?
When my son-in-law was trying on a “baby” backpack for the first time. I am so grateful that the baby was only a doll because it was hilarious watching him negotiate getting into it. At one point, the doll was upside down and he was holding her by the ankles. LOL
Who is your hero?
On a professional level, Coco Chanel. She was not afraid to think way “out of the box” and even though her style is not mine, I love her strength in approaching everything beautiful with passion and tenacity.
Where do you see your business going?
I think our new website is going to inject innovative ideas and design concepts into the home furnishing market online with endless possibilities. Our clients have a very good idea of what they want but do not know how to get it or where to put it. Now they can have both by visiting our website!
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