With an eye for detail, an intuitive understanding of interior styling and an obsession with organising everything, Susan Townsend shares with us how she got to where she is now as well as more about what she does.
How did you get in to organising other people’s homes and interior styling?
I started off working as a model when I was very young and was lucky to travel the world and work with some amazing creative people and staying in beautiful accommodations. I was hooked on interiors from then on and designed many of my own homes.
Following my years of travelling I trained as a florist with Jane Packer and when I moved to Canada for 8 years I got involved in home organising as a side business to my floral design. I would prep homes for sale for all their floral needs and it just evolved from there as I just couldn’t stop myself from ‘tidying up’ and putting my own touches on everything.
What services do you offer in terms of home organisation?
I can do as little or as much as people want. I can organise play rooms, bedrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms and pretty much any other space they would like. It’s all about getting order in to people’s lives. Sometimes it’s hard for clients to imagine their space in a new way, to understand that their home could potentially work much better for them. Once rooms are organised and tidy it’s so much easier to keep them that way because everything has its place.
We always find that clients will pack a house, put it into storage for 6+ months and in the intervening period forget all the things they thought they needed. Is editing existing furniture and accessories something you can help with prior to a renovation?
Yes definitely. It’s the perfect time to reassess and edit what they’d like to keep and to get rid of the things they don’t. I have found that clients find it easier with someone like me there to help them as they can get attached to certain things, but deep down they know they shouldn’t hang on to. I can also help with the selling of furniture and accessories if required.
What other services do you offer?
Apart from organising I can help prepare homes for sale. This can either be styling for the all important photo shoot for the estate agent photos, or more of an in-depth session where I move furniture and change the space to make it more inviting to buyers.
If a client needs to sell an empty property I also offer full staging services where I bring in all the rental furniture and accessories. A furnished space is so much more appealing than an empty one.
I can help with full on moves where I organise everything from sorting belongings, booking movers, assisting on move-out day and setting up of the new home. This service is suitable for either seniors, people downsizing, or for anyone who is too busy to do it themselves. It is a time consuming ‘job’ to move and I can take the stress out of it.
What’s your dream project or do you have any favourite rooms to work on?
My dream project would be to work with a family who would want me to organise their house from moving in stage. This way one could implement all the great organising tools from the get-go.
My favourite rooms to do is either a kitchen or a walk-in pantry. These two spaces are the most impactful as it makes a huge difference to your everyday life when it runs smoothly and is tidy at all times. I also love a good wardrobe detox!
Portrait image: Courtesy of LumityLife by photographer Helene Sandberg.
All other images kindly supplied by Susan Townsend.