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Design Spotlight: Camellia Butterfield, Interior Designer

May 24, 2018

Published by Pratt Home Builders | Article Written by Brittany Shaw Newman

In this Pratt Home Builders Design Spotlight, we get to know of the newest additions to our in-house interior design team, Camellia Butterfield. She left Tuscaloosa, AL to join our team in Chattanooga, TN, which has proven to be a great fit since Chattanooga is such an incredible outdoor mecca and offers an abundance of opportunities for one of Camellia’s great loves: rock climbing! At work, Camellia does a great job with helping customers realize their personal style within our many home plans and design options. Read further to learn more about her Camellia’s nature-inspired design style, love for tacos, and – what everyone wants to know- how she came to have such a fantastic name.

BN: First of all, how did you come by your beautiful and unique name?  And how often do people ask you this question?

CB: Originally born in the west – in Yorba Linda, California –  I roamed the earth for nearly 24 years as Camellia Oleda Aslami. When I turned 7, my family moved to Alabama, which coincidentally has the Camellia as the state flower. My name changed in the fall of 2013, when I married into the most southern name I could have ever imagined for myself, Camellia Oleda Butterfield (and no, to answer everyone’s most asked question, I did not seek my husband out for his last name).

BN: What inspired you to become an interior designer?

CB: My passion for interior design hit me when I started attending the University of Alabama. Walking from one campus building to another, I was not only inspired by the aesthetic design differences between new construction and remodels, but I also developed a new appreciation for the good versus bad function within interior spaces.

BN: What specifically is your degree in, and what experience have you had so far?

CB: I received my Interior Design Bachelor’s degree in 2012 through the Human Environmental Sciences College at the University of Alabama. As a student, I interned as a Design Assistant for the UA Furnishings & Design Department, where I gained invaluable commercial project experience. Upon graduation, I accepted my first job with a design firm, Lampadas LLC, where I was able to change gears and manage high-end residential projects while gaining exposure to the small-business and furniture industry.

BN: How long have you been with the Pratt Home Builders team?

CB: I joined the Pratt Home Builders family at the beginning of January 2018, so I’m just shy of 5 months of being at the company, but everyone has been so welcoming that I feel like I’ve been here for years!

BN: What is your favorite part of the design process?

CB: At Pratt, my favorite part of the design process is getting to be creative with each buyer. Every house we build at Pratt, is specifically customized to meet the needs of our buyers, so that allows me to explore varies design problem solving solutions per house plan.

BN: What are some of your most memorable experiences with Pratt customers so far?

CB: One of my favorite moments at Pratt was working with one of our out-of-town buyers, who asked to bring their dog to their meetings (so they didn’t have to hassle with overnight boarding, etc.). As a fellow pet owner, I was more than happy to accommodate the additional four paws at our meeting, and by the end of our design sessions I wanted to take the little rascal home because he was so well behaved!

BN: What are three things you wish people knew about designing their new construction home?

CB:

  • The contract closing dates, assigned to each buyer’s home during the sales phase, is an estimated date. Home construction is a fluid process, and the schedule will inevitably vary with weather and site conditions, therefore the closing date will get revised during construction.
  • Pinterest is a great resource for interior design inspiration, however it can be very misleading for new home buyers going through new construction. There are several cases of installation that are pictured online that are not built per code, or set up buyers with high expectations that result in high-end, expensive custom methods.
  • The design process is always more than you expect it to be. There are so many details that go into each interior selection category, that also connect to other categories, to create a cohesive interior and exterior design concept. To make this process smoother, it is always helpful when buyers are aware of their personal taste when it comes to selecting material, function, aesthetic – this eliminates the guessing game for your designer, and helps speed the process up overall.

BN: What’s your favorite Pratt home plan?

CB: The Waterford is my favorite Pratt home plan because the first floor is great space for entertaining with the open concept, in addition to the function of a family-friendly layout for daily traffic with kids (and pets too).

BN: What is your favorite source of design inspiration?

CB: Nature is my overall design inspiration. You can source everything from material to patterns through nature’s elements. My personal design taste is derived from all things natural. I love having exposed wood throughout my interiors, mixed with organic tile textures, patterns, metal accents, topped with hints of greenery for simple accessories. I believe great interior design is accomplished with strategic window placement and layout, to frame in nature as much as possible, thus becoming a focal point – or art.

BN: What do you like to do in your spare time?

CB: If it’s weekday after 5:00 p.m. or the weekend, you will most likely find me nearby rocks or tacos. My husband and I love being outdoors every chance we get, which typically involves rock climbing (indoors at the gym on rainy days). If you’ve ever rock climbed, then you know what follows – hunger; therefore, tacos are my first choice of food after a good climb.

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