• Phyllis Harbinger

Giving Back Through Your Craft

Throughout the year, but especially during the Holidays, we have a chance to reflect and to forecast. I would like to take this opportunity to ask you all - How did you "do good" in 2018?

There are so many ways in which creatives in the Design/Build industry can participate. We can offer our services as donations, or provide gift certificates for various organizations, which benefits the organizations and helps them raise funds.

These are some ways I’ve given back and you can as well:

1. We can participate in showhouses. All proceeds that are made from people coming to the showhouse and other events, such as the opening gala, go to a charity. Creating a room in a showhouse can be a great way for a designer to get exposure to prospective clients and also to capitalize on media opportunities. A showhouse generally aligns with a local high-level magazine, which will feature the designers in a special issue. I actually got three new clients from an ASID Showhouse I participated in and one is still my client today. We have done three homes for her!

2. Work with Habitat for Humanity or help out at a shelter or a low-income housing project to bring great design to those who need it most.

3. Another way to "do good' and give back to your community is to partner with a television show. Two years ago, I was asked to participate on a George to the Rescue episode for a lovely family who had a three-year old girl, Mia. She suffered with Cerebral Palsy and we were there to create a new basement, which I aptly called the Kid Cave. Watching the promo video for our episode brought me to tears and I can honestly say it was one of the very best experiences in my career. To be able to make life sustaining changes to a home so that Mia could be more independent, her brothers could have a space to interact with her and to give their mom a spa bath sanctuary was a highlight in my life. When little Mia uttered "I love my room," I cried with tears of both joy and delight. The reveal happened a few days before Christmas and truly brought new meaning to the concept of "doing good" for me. I highly recommend this experience to all!

The team and I on site filming

Our fabulous Host George

Filming on set

Mia's finished room

So, at this joyous time of year, think about bringing joy to those in need. Think about design changing lives and how you can make a difference.

Click here to be inspired by watching our George to the Rescue episode. Happy Holidays to all!

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