By Tina Jepsen
Nicole Davis’ career is centered on the world of interior and product design. As a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, Nicole dove headfirst into design as an Editorial Intern at Scranton-Gillette Communications. Within months, she took on the role of Assistant Editor and then Managing Editor.
And for the past six years, Nicole Davis has served at the helm of Furniture, Lighting & Decor Magazine and its predecessor publications: Residential Lighting and Home Fashion Forecast. Her knowledge about what’s trending now, and what’s next in the world of home furnishings and accessories cannot be overstated, and she’s received numerous awards for her various editorial work.
She is, quite frankly, helping to shape the world of design as we know it. She’s the ultimate influencer.
In an exclusive interview, the House Tipster media team got to know Nicole better, and get a better grasp on what fuels her work with this popular industry publication.
House Tipster: You went to school for journalism. What made you want to write and edit for the design world?
Nicole Davis: I ended up in the design world in a happenstance sort of way, actually. I was hired at Furniture, Lighting & Decor's publishing company, Scranton Gillette Communications, as an editorial intern years ago working on several different publications in the medical, water management and building worlds. Shortly after I started, an opening popped up on the decor book and I've been in this wonderful industry ever since! I had no formal training in design when I started but it's been really fun to learn.
House Tipster: What makes Furniture, Lighting & Decor different from other design publications?
Nicole Davis: Our content is horizontal in fashion, meaning we cover all categories of home furnishings (furniture, lighting and decor), instead of focusing on one vertical channel. We also aim to present a consumer magazine feel in a to-the-trade package.
House Tipster: What are some of the biggest accomplishments of your career thus far?
Nicole Davis: Furniture, Lighting & Decor is still a fairly new brand, launched in January 2017. I was part of the very small team that reimagined and relaunched Scranton Gillette's legacy decor brands into Furniture, Lighting & Decor — it was an incredible undertaking but I'm so proud of what we've built. In our first year, we were also a finalist for a Jesse H. Neal Award, which is a very prestigious journalism awards competition — the icing on the cake.
House Tipster: What trends do you anticipate for 2019 and beyond? Is there anything bubbling at the surface that HT readers should keep on their radars?
Nicole Davis: In terms of product, a few trends will continue to stand out into next year: mixed materials, strong sculptural forms that create bold statements, and overall an eclectic but curated look.
In the industry in general, something that I think will be a focus in the coming year is an emphasis on point of view, quality and customization. The way consumers shop for home furnishings has changed dramatically, and manufacturers and retailers of these products are trying to figure out how to get that business. One way to do that is to stand out in the types of products you offer, as well as the way you present your story, so working to further refine both of these will be on the forefront.
Although Furniture, Lighting & Decor is a fairly new publication, their readership is growing by the day, due in part to Nicole’s efforts.
To hear more about Nicole’s perspective on the changing landscape of furniture design, check out this panel discussion from Las Vegas Market.
Thank you, Nicole, for your time and perspective.