Calling all crafters and creative types!! Claire Zinnecker — Austin’s beautiful and best known do-it-yourselfer — will make an appearance at the Saint Cloud boutique on Thursday from 6 to 8 pm. You may have been witness to her creative genius on “Transformed,” the series she writes for Camille Styles‘ lifestyle blog. Or by way of her newly established design firm of the same name, where she executes clean, affordable design for residential and commercial interiors. But Claire’s self-proclaimed passion is creating DIY home accessories and furniture for unique spaces. Learn more about her here and meet the master-crafter in person tomorrow at Saint Cloud (5217 Kelvin Blvd.).
TELL US HOW YOU GOT YOUR START
I decided I wanted to be an architect around the age of 7. I was always making, drawing, building. In high school, my uncle — who is also an architect and was my inspiration for pursuing that career — encouraged me to focus more on interior design. I am so thankful he did! I went to the University of Texas at Austin and got my BS in Interior Design in the Architecture School. From there, I was fortunate enough to work under some of the most talented designers in Austin until I decided to start my own firm last year. I also wrote a DIY series called “Transformed” for the lifestyle blog Camille Styles that really helped me define my style while also reawakening my love for making.
Whenever I’m feeling stressed or had a bad day at work, I turn up my Jay-Z, Drake, etc., and jam.”
WHERE DO YOU GATHER THE MOST INSPIRATION?
I find inspiration everywhere ! A photograph, a fabric, a building or an abandoned building. I am constantly rearranging my house to experiment before putting the idea into practice in a client’s home. When I get in a brain rut, I put on my tennis shoes and go for a run. My best ideas come then.
YOU ARE A FIRM BELIEVER THAT EVERY SPACE TELLS A STORY. WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR FAVORITE STORY THUS FAR?
Oh, gosh, that’s tough. I loved helping Teysha with their boutique. They are not only wonderful people but also work towards a great cause. I really enjoyed getting to be a part of that process. I also love my client Ashton’s South Congress addition/remodel (probably because I would love to live in there myself). She was easy-going and excited. I love making clients create their dream spaces no matter what their budget is.
BIGGEST TIP YOU COULD GIVE SOMEONE WHO IS DESIGNING A NEW SPACE.
Edit! Pick a few moments to create; don’t throw every Pinterest idea into one space. Lay out your favorite design ideas, then try to find the common theme in them. Keep that idea consistent throughout the space. That makes the house feel cohesive but also gives you the starting point in each room to give it its own personality without becoming bogged down by a million ideas.
WHAT’S YOUR GUILTY PLEASURE?
Rap music! Whenever I’m feeling stressed or had a bad day at work, I turn up my Jay-Z, Drake, etc., and jam.
FAVORITE THING YOU’LL BE GIFTING THIS HOLIDAY SEASON?
Time with my family away from my computer and phone! Honestly,I’m not a huge “gift person,” but I do love wrapping them. Creating pretty packages is the best part.
ANYTHING ELSE YOU’D LIKE OUR READERS TO KNOW?
Thirty-five to 40 percent of my house is a DIY or a redone thrift find. I am always experimenting with projects, for better or worse, to see if making is better than buying. My house constantly has at least one work in progress, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’ve learned more from that than I ever did in school. I love every aspect of the creative process. I know how to handle my fair share of power tools, I can wire a light, and next on my list is learn how to weld.