We had the opportunity to connect and chat with Shira Charles of Charles Interior. Shira’s recent blog, “Smart Design Within Your Interiors,” was truly appreciated, so we reached out to continue the conversation. You can read the full interview below to learn about Shira, Charles Interior, and more. Also, keep an eye out for future collaborations from Charles Interior x Cloud9 Smart.

About Me:

Charles Interior Founder and Principal Shira Charles

Single mom to a beautiful and smart 13yo daughter and new 3mo old pup, living in Jersey. Working in interior design nationally, dabbling as an artist and trying to give back as much as possible to make the world a better place. (See our work with WWO)

How did you get into design?

I was working for a healthcare company that was frustrated with the renovations in many of their nursing homes. I recognized the disconnect between the client and designers and got involved. After a few short months I realized it was what I needed to be doing full time!

What is the most memorable or favorite project you have worked on? 

Hmmm, hard to say. There are elements of a few that I really love. I would have to choose the photography studio for Joey Lawrence (If you haven’t seen his work you MUST). It was a small job but the elements involved were so my vibe. Reclaimed wood, black iron loft, plastered walls etc. That doesn’t always happen.

Who is your ideal client?  

My ideal client is someone who really values a good design, and what goes into design. An individual with a fast paced, life who wants us to come in and transform their space with culture, nature, functionality and art as the focus. It’s also incredibly important to me to respect the people I work with. So, someone who cares about making an effort to better the world…that’s someone I’m excited to work with.

How were you introduced to Cloud9 Smart?

A fellow Linkedin connection! Joe Apfelbaum

In your recent blog post, “Smart Design Within Your Interiors,” you mentioned experiencing the most impractical frustrations in beautiful spaces. What are some examples of these frustrations that you have come across while working with your clients?

Lack of education. When a client doesn’t understand the extent of impact on their home/life/business/staff by not doing things properly in the design and build, by not investing in the proper product and better service…they won’t spend on it or take the time to do it. For me I wish people took the time to listen and research on items like lighting and tech. I want to walk away from a project knowing it’s beautiful AND functional on all levels. Not just surface pretty and then frustrating and headache inducing.

What is your design process, and when would Cloud9 Smart step in to help?

The simplified version of our process boils down to 1. Learning about and understanding the client and the project’s needs and scope. 2. Design Development 3. Execution and Project management. But that’s incredibly simplified. For a more detailed breakdown of how a project works, check out the post we did on it. Cloud9 Smart comes in at the end of 1 and beginning of 2.

In your blog, you also touched on how the design of a space can affect productivity. Many of us are still working remotely, and it is essential, but some may find it challenging to stay productive. Do you have any suggestions for designing a productive home office space?   

Keeping it true to you. And plants. So surrounding yourself by things that make you feel relieved/joyful/excited. Whether it’s your favorite candy, a book or desk accessories that are unnecessary but you just love them so much more than the standard. Plants – real, fake, or art. Doesn’t matter. All of those options bring out the right energy. Real is best though as it transforms your air!

Like Cloud9 Smart, you work with both residential and commercial spaces. Do you feel Cloud9 Smarts assistance to be essential for both types of spaces?

Absolutely. I don’t know that one is more or less important than the other.

If a client wanted to work with Charles Interior potentially, what is the best way to reach out?

By contacting us through our website!  And of course following us on Instagram, Facebook and Linkedin

More on smart design with Cloud9 Smart:

Our Process

Design Your Smart Home

Lighting Design