By Tina Jepson
With Inspiration from MartinPatrick3
Inspiration comes when and where you least expect it. For Greg Walsh, the founder and president of MartinPatrick3, inspiration came from a simple childhood toy: LEGOs. As a young child, Greg would build house after house out of those tiny building blocks, only to knock them down and start again. It didn’t take long for Greg (and everyone around him) to realize that architecture and design were his professional calling.
Greg began to make a name for himself in the world of interior design beginning in 1989. By 1994, he’d created MartinPatrick3, a 17,000 square foot store focused on men’s lifestyle items, including apparel, furnishings, and interior design services.
What are some of Greg’s favorite aspects of his trade? What are his plans for the future of MartinPatrick3? These are some of the questions we were dying to have answered during our exclusive interview with Greg Walsh.
The Fine Balance of Interior Design
As anyone in the home building and design industry knows, interior design involves a lot more than just arranging furniture. In fact, the key to not just designing but excelling at the design process is to understand the client. Greg gets to know as much as he can about the people he works for, including their lifestyle and personal preferences before he tackles each specific project. He describes his role as an interior designer as “Personalizing [the house] and resonating the soul of the client in the interior.”
Photos courtesy of MartinPatrick3
Once he has a good grasp on what his client needs and wants, he combines the functional and technical aspects with “the beauty of finishes and furniture.” It’s a fine balance Greg and his team have mastered.
Of course, it’s not all fun and games. At times, Greg finds the balance of quality, design, and budget to be one of the most challenging aspects of the trade. To settle on furniture and finishes that appeal to the client and accentuate the home takes work—especially when the clients themselves don’t always see eye to eye.
It’s no surprise that most interesting work experiences involve design-related “domestic disputes.” Greg tells us,” Often, we play a role of ‘Couple Counselor’ during a project, balancing opposing viewpoints of budget and design.”
Yikes! Naturally, it always works out in the end, and the home AND couple are better for it.
Lessons in Design for Industry Professionals & Homeowners
Over his 30+ years in the industry, Greg has seen trends and designers come and go. But through it all, Greg has noticed that education is what creates a good interior designer. He encourages budding interior designers to learn as much as possible.
“Go deep into the interior design industry and dedicate the first five years of your career to studying, absorbing information, learning, experiencing, traveling, and understanding as much information as possible,” he suggests.
With some basic know-how, homeowners can also maximize their experience working with a professional interior designer. For starters, it’s always good to do some research before you start a home improvement or design project. “Explore different styles to determine what is important in terms of functionality and then aesthetically,” Greg states.
Oh, and before I forget, Greg recommends waiting to start a project until you’ve set a clear budget.
“Know how much you are willing to spend on a project before it starts," he says. "Then, hire a professional designer to do the work.”
At the end of the day, Greg is all about making interior design easy and fun for his clients. “My biggest joy is when clients almost forget they worked with us, the home is so individually theirs that they feel it is theirs and they did it,” he says.
This dedication is reflected in the MartinPatrick3 portfolio and their legions of happy clients.
To learn more about MartinPatrick3, including their inventory of men’s apparel, home furnishings, and design services, start at the MartinPatrick3 website.