From creating department store environments and styling mannequins, Marissa Nelums discovered the passion that would ignite her journey as an interior designer. But when an interior design firm stole her work, Nelums was determined to pursue entrepreneurship full-time.
On Saturday, Nelums celebrated the opening of her first brick-and-mortar showroom, Glasshouse Interior Design, on the South Side of Chicago in Armour Square, Block Club Chicago reported. The location of the studio was intentional. Nelums feels it was inspire more Black Chicagoans to pursue the interior design.
With her design studio, Nelums aims to “impart excellent service and build genuine relationships with each client” while also providing more affordable services, according to its website.
“I always wanted to keep my community at the forefront of how we structure things,” Nelums told Block Club Chiago. “I started this because there wasn’t a lot of representation for people who look like me in design. We’re extremely proud to reach more than just the people who can afford design services.”
Just 2 percent of interior designers in the United States. are Black, according to the job search company Zippia.
Nelums began to pour into interior design after her father died. What started as a healthy outlet turned into her career when she was hit with another studio stealing photos of an apartment she had decorated.
“I thought, ‘If I’m good enough to steal from, maybe there’s something to this. Maybe this is something I can do long-term,’” said Nelums.
Glasshouse Interior Design specializes in any design, including modern and industrial. Nelums, who is often referred to as the queen of glam, said she loves “contemporary furniture pieces mixed with high fashion accessories” and “mixing textures and patterns to create cohesive monochromatic spaces.”
“From bold colors to neutrals I like to style every space like an outfit, each piece is stylish and complementary to the rest of the room,” she added. Her work has been seen in Architectural Digest and Coming Home magazines.
In addition to her glam brainchild, Nelums also launched a home furnishings line to cater to those with smaller budgets. The collection includes private label drapery, artwork, and furniture.